Hello! and welcome to my pitch for......
The JAMBULA Project
A capacity building arts education program in Malawi in association with REDD Horizon.
Having received £500 from the The African Arts Trust, I am looking to raise a further £1,400 to fund the first stage of The JAMBULA Project; a three-day art workshop and residency in November at Phynzira an education centre in the north of Malawi). Artists from both within and outside of Malawi have been invited to take part in this unique opportunity to spend time living and working together, to develop their skills and to build up a meaningful creative dialogue. The participation from local artists will be fully funded.
The focus of the first workshop will be on Malawi’s forests. Deforestation is a massive issue in Malawi - 30% of their forests have disappeared in the last 10 years. Action needs to be taken now. Artists will work together to generate and develop strategies to communicate the issue of deforestation within Malawi. Ideas could take the form of anything from designing t-shirts and postcards, painting murals and billboards or holding workshops at schools – the most successful of which will receive ongoing support from REDD Horizon.
The importance of the development of cultural life is largely overlooked in less developed countries. To encourage creativity is to enrich the lives people live, generate ideas, solve problems, lead to the development of successful organisations, initiatives and businesses.
The JAMBULA Project aims to
- Promote the importance of creativity and arts education.
- Develop a series of creative workshops in schools and education centres in Malawi.
- Build and support an enduring network of artists in Malawi.
- Foster meaningful dialogues between artists both within and outside of Malawi.
- Listen to and work with local communities to develop and support sustainable creative projects.
A basic fund of £1,850 will cover the cost of travel and allow me to hold a basic workshop (covering basic costs for 5 participants).
Depending on the amount I raise, I also aim to:
- pay a fee for local artist Myck Fisha who will help organises the workshop (click here for a short film of Myck talking about Kurt Kruger…!)
- cover travel, basic subsistence and accommodation costs for all Malawians involved in the workshop.
- buy materials for the workshop
- print project t-shirts (in Malawi) / commission billboard paintings
- contribute to Phynzira (the education centre where the workshop will take place)
- commission artists to begin work on future workshops and projects at education centres and schools.
REDD Horizon: a training and capacity building project based at the School of Geosciences, University of Edinburgh. REDD Horizon& 39;s main objective is to reduce deforestation in Malawi. Working with Malawi partners, they look to implement strategies to tackle this enormous issue.
PHUNZIRA: a UK registered charity that is raising funds to create a self-sustainable education centre in the north of Malawi. They have numerous artistic initiatives underway and are keen to develop a high quality arts program with The JAMBULA Project.
Since 2010 I have been volunteering as Project Artist for REDD Horizon. The initiator of this project, Dr Iain Woodhouse, a self professed & 39;out-of-the-box& 39; thinker, believes in the importance of the involvement of individuals from all sorts of backgrounds and disciplines for the success in any project with ambitions on the scale of those of REDD Horizon. (see the links at bottom if you want to read more on this).
A two week trip to Malawi at the end of last year provided the starting point for a fruitful collaborative partnership between Iain and myself. Together, we continue to develop new exhibitions, discussions and events. I also, met some wonderful Malawians who inspired my enthusiastic desire to foster their abilities as facilitators of positive change. It has been an eye-opening, thrilling, thought provoking, worrying but fantastic journey so far.
It also fuelled my enthusiasm and desire to work with Malawian creatives and involve them with REDD Horizon so that much of REDD& 39;s work can be done & 39;in house& 39; so to speak. I met some wonderful people whilst out there, whose value as facilitators of positive change, I believe, is not yet being fully recognised or utilised.
In Malawi, there is no real art education or facilities to speak of, and the idea of an artist doing anything more productive than making trinkets to sell to tourists is a curious one (perhaps to a certain extent we still have that attitude here- but at least there is a support network in place for those who disagree).
To take steps towards the realisation of ideas for projects in Malawi, I am keen re-visit the people and places I discovered last year that have ambitions and ideas that need support; to organise and be involved in a workshop with creatives in Malawi, with the involvement of anyone else keen (a cross-culture dialogue is mutually beneficial - we learn from each other, & 39;do-gooder& 39; aid is not my thing).
I believe in the breadth of this project and feel that a flexibility needs to be retained for its success. Various groups and individuals have already shown an interest and belief in my role with REDD Horizon, which has given me the confidence of the real value in bringing creativity to development.
So I am looking to you for any donation you feel you can give to support this project so that it can make immediate and exciting progress.
In the spirit of all good fundraising ventures, and as another way of supporting the local Malawian economy, I modestly pledge to send anyone donating the following:
A great big enormous huge thank you PLUS
£10 an e-post card
£20 + unique photograph taken whilst in Malawi
£40 + a drawing produced during the workshop
£60 + a CD of music recorded during the workshop
£100 + a t-shirt designed at the workshop
£200 + an especially commissioned personalised stamp or keyring made in Malawi
£500 + an extra-special extra-something
- “Imagination is more important than knowledge.” Albert Einstein - Iain Woodhouse on divergent thinking
- & 39;Support for creative industries offers significant potential for economic growth& 39;.- Report from the Commonwealth Foundation
- JAMBULA - A recent REDD Horizon event / exhibition at The School of Geosciences, Edinburgh University - here you can also find a link to & 39;JAMBULA (in motion)& 39; a short film I made using footage from my trip to Malawi last year.