Unity in Diversity -Youth Art Talks

“We all should know that diversity makes for a rich tapestry, and we must understand that all the threads of the tapestry are equal in value no matter what their colour.” –Maya Angelou

Unity in diversity is used as an expression of harmony and unity between dissimilar individuals or groups. It is a concept of unity without uniformity and diversity without fragmentation that shifts the focus from unity based on mere tolerance of physical, cultural, linguistic, social, religious, political, ideological and psychological differences towards a more complex unity based on an understanding that differences enrich our human interactions creating diverse but united communities.

In January I had the pleasure of leading some local youth through my art exhibit “Unity in Diversity” at the Alberta Lottery Fund Art Gallery which is located inside the Shell Theater in Fort Saskatchewan. Each group participated in an Art Talk and then an art project where they got to create their own interpretations of the theme.

I lead a local group of homeschoolers through on January 18th and then on January 25th the Fort Saskatchewan Girl Guides came out for an evening of art.

Both groups were a great bunch of kids who had loads of questions and enthusiasm.

I walked them through my creative process and about what it meant to be united in diversity and how we can pair those two seemingly opposite qualities together. We discussed how families are one example of what this looks like. A family may have people with different views, interests, or preferences who show diversity in many aspects, but they demonstrate a sense of unity among them as a family and how this can be applied in a broader sense to community.

We talked about how this theme was reflected in the art how each piece though different and unique fitted within the body of work on exhibit. Finally we talked about how sometimes it’s easier to see the differences that divide us than the things that unite us; but that we can train our eyes and our hearts to extend grace and compassion to those around us and in so doing we as individuals can impact our world and help to create a more vibrant beautiful community around us.

Once we were done in the gallery we headed back to one of the rooms to create out art project.

All in all it was a great opportunity to share art, creativity and community with some fabulous youth.

Unity in Diversity

Unity in Diversity is my latest upcoming solo exhibit.

After the last few years of Covid and division I wanted to create something that was both beautiful and unifying and thus “Unity in Diversity” was born. Each painting in this series uses texture and color to visually represent and emphasize the beauty of differences and how when we unite our diversity with others we form a vibrant and beautiful work of art called community. This exhibit is a celebration of individuality and diversity but instead of having those qualities divide us they unite us.

Each painting is a unique expression of Unity in Diversity and represents on a microcosm scale our global diversity.

The “Talk” …

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You know what artists usually do best?

CREATE!

We are good at using pictures, colors and textures to convey our thoughts and feelings.

But in order to make those creations relate able to our viewers we need to do “The Talk”.

“The Talk” often fills artists with anxiety.

I think this anxiety partly comes from a fear of not being able to clearly and adequately express in words what we have already expressed on canvas.

It’s that old adage that a picture is worth a 1000 words.

I think it’s more accurate to say that some things, some experiences can’t be fully described in any other way but artistically and even then the art form used may still only be grasping at the coat tails of those experiences.

Then add in the problem of subjectivity, how you see and I see will be different.

Even how we perceive the same colors will vary from person to person andย at this point a lot of Artists will take a hard pass on that “Talk” because they are scared to put themselves out there for fear of rejection.

Who can blame them, Society today places an emphasis on living life on fast forward click that thumbs up button or angry face and move on.

But weย were made for so much more than that.

Imagine if we took time, actual time not just a scroll through to get to know someone, to learn from their experience and to share yours to actually interact with each other.

Can you imagine what the world would look like if we saw people, individuals for who they truly are?

You see friends I’m a Christian Artist not just because I believe in a Creative God but I believe in his creative process and that’s you.

You! Each and every one of you is a beautiful work of art and you are living a life that I’m not and there is value in sharing those experiences with each other.

And that is why I am doing “The Talk”.

It may not be as eloquent as I’d like, it may fall short of describing a particular piece from my original artistic vision, but I firmly believe there is value in our interaction and I’m willing to risk getting up in front of a crowd of people to share it with you,ย  so I hope you’ll take the time to join me.

To our shared experiences!

Cheers,

Amanda

My Exhibit “Blue Pomegranate” will be on display for the month of June with the official meet and greet happening on June 11 at 7pm and the Artist Talk happening on June 14th at 7pm at the ALFA (Alberta Lottery Fund Art) Gallery for “The Talk”ย  The gallery is located in the heart of the Sherritt Cultural Pavilion at the Dow Centennial Centre 8700 84 St, Fort Saskatchewan, AB T8L 4P5

Exhibit Hours
Thursdays & Fridays
11 am – 2 pm
Also open during performances at the Shell

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Time for an Update

Hello my poor neglected subscribers I’ve yet again abandoned you to go on a creative frenzy.

Sometimes I feel like being an Artist is like a boat on the ocean; sometimes I’m overwhelmed by the waves of creativity and other times I’m drifting on still waters.

The last few months I’ve definitely been tossed about creatively. It seems it’s all I can do to get the ideas out of my head fast enough.

So let me catch you up on a few things. I’ve of course been busy with my hand stamped Jewelry business as well as the whole art studio aspect of life.

I’ve become the secretary for the Society of Fort Saskatchewan Artists so that’s new

and I continue to be a member of CIVA Christians in the Visual Arts and am now listed in their artists guide.

I’ve also had a solo and a group exhibit at the Fort Saskatchewan City Hall Art nook Gallery.

Here’s a pic of my latest pieces on display

If you’d like to see more on the creation of these 2 check out and follow me on Instagram for daily posts at milke.amanda

So those are up on exhibit until the end of the month.

Tomorrow I am attending River fest as celebration of the North Saskatchewan River in Fort Saskatchewan. They invited me to attend the Artisan Fair so I’ve been busy prepping art for that. Including these new pieces.

And trust me that’s not everything! So as you can tell I’ve been insanely busy. If I’m not painting, I’m hand stamping and being a stay at home mom and training a new puppy

So now we have 2 munchkins and 2 poochies and a whole lot of busy daily life.

And starting Monday I’m also back to teaching some public art classes

And in all this crazy creative chaos I’ve been extra busy with my home based business growing over 300% this year and we’re only into September! My customers must think I’m doing an ok job since my business was nominated for the following awards from the Fort Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce.

So now I need to go dress shopping so I can attend the Awards Gala in October and see if I bring home a trophy.

So that pretty much sums up why I’ve been so busy and why we haven’t spoken for a while.

I’m hoping to eventually even with classes running and stamping orders to slow down a bit and not be so rushed. But until then, keep me loaded of paint and caffeine ๐Ÿ˜‰

Cheers for now!

Amanda