Now, this community mural was a true team effort!
For a while now the people in the small mountainous village of San Cristobal el Alto have been trying to attract tourists by offering hikes on nature trails and by selling food and homemade products. Volunteer Miki Iwatsuki (JICA) has been involved in the project and has set up a mural project to beautify this charming village. And yesterday we painted the first one!
While Miki arranged everything with the owners of the wall, Laurel Jacobson (Mesón Panza Verde) had the wall plastered. She also sponsored the materials and organized all the logistics (paint, brushes, transportation and lunch for the painters). Laurel teaches art to the scholarship students at CasaSito and it was her idea to get the kids involved.
I came in to teach the students how to copy and enlarge a design and to prep them for the hard work. I also made the design with nature as an overall theme and more specifically apiculture since the family that owns the wall has beehives.
All nine of CasaSito’s art students joined us, as well as three of the students that participated in my mural project that we finished last week. CasaSito’s founder Alice Lee So Fong joined us too and off we went!
It was hot and humid but that didn’t stop us, not for a minute! The family of beekeepers helped us paint, as well as passersby and friends. The students did an awesome job and by the end of the afternoon the mural was on the wall, varnished and all.
What was incredible was that INMEDIATELY after finishing it, tourists started to pose in front of the wall to take pictures. People actually stopped their cars to get out and take pictures, causing a traffic jam in the narrow street. And the owner of the house already sold a bottle of honey because of the mural! I’d say, mission more than accomplished!
So all in all we had a great day. Lunch at Doña Angela’s (across the street from the mural) was delicious, as was the cinnamon bread with honey the family treated us to celebrate the completion of the mural. The only one not quite satisfied was the little boy of the house who was slightly disappointed that we didn’t paint Spiderman on the wall. Other than that, it was one of those days with a golden edge…
Please do go visit San Cristobal el Alto, it’s worth it!