Friday, March 22, 2019

Volcano Erupting Butterflies

I had almost given up on ever painting this mural, but am very glad I got the chance to paint it. The idea of a volcano erupting butterflies came out of a workshop I conducted in December last year for a group of kids from Alotenango. It was actually a workshop on Henri Matisse (click here for the full report), but that’s how things go, one idea leads to the other. Painting this mural would be the final activity wrapping up a series of art workshops for kids in the shelter after the volcano eruption last June. The design was there, as well as the funding, the volunteers and the wall. The only tiny thing missing was permission.
Long and boring story short, the permission never materialized and I thought this commemorative mural was something I should delete of my to-do list.  But then Suzan of the Carpentry Project in Alotenango reminded me that within days the opening of the brand new activity centre at the shelter would take place and wouldn’t that be a good location?
Indeed! This classroom is designed to be used for workshops, reading and other fun activities for kids and adults at the Santa Isabel Shelter in Alotenango. The special thing about it is that the whole building is made of trash! The construction was an initiative of Susana of PuraVida, and NGO specialized in using trash for building materials. Hundreds of kids were involved in the process, stuffing soda bottles with all kinds of trash, turning them in “eco-bricks”. The Municipality donated the terrain, the Carpentry Project offered to build the wooden frame and within a few months, this building was a fact. Last Wednesday was the official opening, attended by lots of kids and even two real mermaids who told the children what an impact all that trash has on their environment.

As usual, this mural is the result of a collaborative effort, so many thanks to the following people and institutions!
Dr. Jim Bader for Sponsoring this mural; Henry Navarijo for helping paint this mural and the logos; the Carpentry Project Alotenango for paying for the wall to be plastered and Susana of Pura Vida for having organized it. And of course the kids from Alotenango who made the original design.