From the Ordinary to the Extraordinary!

Think Art and what do you come up with? Sitting at a desk — drawing, shading, coloring…. For Simona Ambrosini, Italian artist and sculptor extraordinaire, Art is Life! It’s never right or wrong, but an expression of who you are and what you feel on the inside. When you’re done with your art piece, you should feel good. A range of positive emotions should flood your heart and mind.

This was essentially her message to the group of teens and older children who showed up on Sunday morning at the Emergency Home, for this special art activity. There was no paper, no pencils ….. After a brief introduction to her definition of Art and some instructions, she sent them all off into the lush garden to collect whatever materials Nature offered.

The final collection included full coconut palms, stringy roots, seed pods, leaves of all shapes and sizes… that was the easy part. The real challenge would be how all these bits and pieces of Nature could be put together to create a personal expression. Along with some students from Rajabhat University helping, the teens worked together to produce a picture of a man, a woman and heart in between.

Another team made a super-large face (what you have to do when working with palms!) – most original! Explaining that art can also be created on one’s own body, the focus for the younger children suddenly went on to dressing themselves up with flowers in their hair and other parts.

Simona’s little boy , Jacopo, was on hand to show everyone what his mother meant as he made wings out of coconut palms, and a mask from a leaf. Julia, Simon’s daughter, gave them a hand when she dumped out a bag of glittery stage clothes & hats. She also brought out her makeup bag to add more pizzazz to the bodily creations. Students and kids then worked on accessorizing their costumes with their naturally-made add-ons! See the pictures!

Since everyone jumped on the dress-up bandwagon, we decided that a fashion show would be in order. So we took over the stage in the garden and showed the girls how to strut their stuff – all in good fun! There were enough laughs and giggles to make for a Happy Arty day! They can look forward to more adventures in art as Simona will return next Sunday for even more That afternoon, Simona hosted another class for the HIV women – a little more subdued but nonetheless, with the same definition of using art to express what’s in their hearts. Providing paper, colored tape, colored pencils, magazine cut outs and other colored paper prints, the 12 women were invited to share whatever was on their hearts, through this medium of artwork.

It was interesting to see how some shared their innermost desires and thoughts; issues that were preoccupying their minds. When everyone was done, we went around the table, with each describing their artwork and interpreting what their pictures meant. It was a warm getogether, and as they learn to open up and share through this medium, the next art sessions will be very promising as we hope this creative outlet will provide them release from any inner tension and help with healing of troubled hearts. Join us next week!

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