We had a blast on Saturday, March 19th at Fig Jam – a Highland Park community event complete with musical performances, food trucks and lots of grassroots organizations. We used the opportunity to spread the word about our Wild Art sculpture, for which we are still searching for a home. As a recap: our final sculpture will be made of 200 metal paintings, completed by Highland Park youth as part of our Wild Art program in 2015. Through the program, the students received art, ecology and wildlife education, with an emphasis on how art can be used to improve communities. Read more about Wild Art here!
We are very grateful to the Highland Park Neighborhood Council for awarding us our 2nd Neighborhood Purpose Grant last night! We are very excited that the council supports our efforts with Wild Art, and we can’t wait to find a home for our piece. We have been working hard looking for exhibition sites, and can’t wait to share with you all once a final place is secured!
In our latest newsletter we catch you up on our new year goals and latest happenings. Oh and we talk about the year of the Fire Monkey…whatever that is.
Read it here.
We raised over $14,000!
Our crowdfunding campaign for Wild Art was a success, thanks to generous donations from people just like YOU! We were able to raise 70% of our goal of $20,000. Of course we were shooting for 100%, but we are very happy with what we were able to accomplish together, and can’t wait to apply what we learned to make our future campaigns even better!
The funds we raised will be used to complete our Wild Art sculpture, using 200 metal wildlife paintings by teens from Highland Park. We will keep you updated on our progress as things move forward.
If you donated to our campaign and selected a reward, we will get your gift out to you as soon as possible. Please allow 4-6 weeks for processing time.
Wild Art, a RuckusRoots program that connects underserved LA teens to nature in their own community and teaches them visual art skills, wrapped up last week at Academia Avance in Highland Park, Los Angeles. Over the course of 8 weeks, nearly 180 eighth and ninth graders worked with professional artist mentor Nino Alicea to learn artistic skills (color theory, composition and still life drawing). The learned about sustainability from RuckusRoots founder Christine Spehar, and also received education from wildlife expert Miguel Ordenana, who taught them about the amazing biodiversity that exists right under their noses in Los Angeles. The students combined these lessons by creating their own wildlife-inspired artwork on painted aluminum–the templates we used are of threatened native species. They chose between a monarch butterfly, a mountain lion, a trout and a peregrine falcon.
We are so proud of all of the students for their hard work and dedication to this program. Some who initially said, “I’m not creative,” or “I don’t like art,” ended up making some of the most beautiful work. We also interviewed some of our participants and are in the process of putting together a video with that footage, so stay tuned!
The next step for the nearly 200 beautifully painted aluminum plates is to combine them to design one, large permanent sculpture. Collaborator, friend and RuckusRoots artist mentor James Peterson is helping us with this piece of the puzzle. Next, we will work with the city and other local organizations to get our sculpture built and placed permanently. Our students will be able to help with that process and see their art pieces displayed this coming fall.
The goal for publicly placing this sculpture is to give our youth a platform to creatively express themselves, connect to nature in LA and to take ownership of and pride in their community. We believe this introduction to wildlife and conservation issues is the first step in leading young people to engagement in and possibly beyond Los Angeles.
Thanks to all who participated, check out our gallery of pictures below and stay tuned for more videos and updates about this program this summer!