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Update From AAU Sponsored Student in Bolivia

Academy of Art University student Sean Anderson, who the Academy is currently sponsoring to travel in northwest Bolivia with Concern America and Educational Safaris, has sent us some exciting updates on his work. 

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Sean has sent us some photos he has taken on his trip, all captured in a rural village called El Tigre.  These on-the-scene updates from Sean will make the exhibition of his final work, to be held at the Academy of Art University upon his return, even more special for its viewers. Sean’s writing makes it clear that he is having an amazing artistic and personal experience on this trip:
 
“These photos are from a rural village called El Tigre. There are about 200 people total that live there. It is a nine hour drive by four wheel drive to get there, and the village is built in the middle of the Bolivian Rainforest (quite an amazing place!)”

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“In addition to administering basic health needs (toothbrushes, anti-worm pills, and basic health education) with the rest of the group, I was able to do a portrait of a local girl named Felicia that sat for me there. The community gathered around their common area and watched. After about three hours of working, my model for the day was delighted to be finished, and so was I; it's quite a different experience doing a portrait with 20-30 people looking over your shoulder! I presented the drawing to Felicia when we were don; at first she was a bit embarrassed, but I think she enjoyed it none the less.  We talked about the importance of art in the community and to the individual with everyone there.”

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“We then gave the kids each two pieces of paper and two pastels and asked them to go out into the community and draw. The drawings were amazing! And I still have some of them to show with the exhibition [Feb. 28th - Mar. 31 2007 at the 79 New Montgomery Gallery]. After they all returned we decided to do a mini art show for the kids, each one came up and we gave their name, age and held up thier new creations. After an applause by the crowd, each one received thier own sketchbook and set of pastels and charcoal. Total there were about 80 kids that participated. It was an amazing experience to see the excitement and joy that comes from simple paper and pastels.”

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“Thanks to the Academy’s sponsorship of myself and the project, the kids of El Tigre now have a new way to create art as individuals and as a community.”

“I look forward to starting the paintings for the show.”

----Sean Anderson, writing from El Tigre, Bolivia

Original Story about Sean Anderson:

A unique artist. An inspiring experience. An artistic project that will make a difference in the real world. This is what the Academy of Art University is all about.

The Academy of Art University is currently sponsoring fine art student Sean Anderson, who is traveling in northwest Bolivia with Concern America and Educational Safaris. Sean is working on a painting project in conjunction with a health project called El Puente (The Bridge). El Puente is an important cross-cultural educational expedition and fundraiser for the Rio Beni Health Project in the rainforest of Bolivia, which provides basic health aid to rural villages.

Sean is not only participating as a volunteer for El Puente, but is also playing a key role in the project as artist-in-residence. He is creating a body of work that will bring to life the interaction between those coming from California and the native Bolivians. “I view art as a universal language…my goal is to use this language as a tool to convey messages that have importance to myself and to others” says Sean. His paintings will be used to spread awareness about the area and to raise funds so El Puente can continue its mission there.

In addition to sponsoring Sean’s travel, the Academy will also host a special show of his work. Sean estimates that it will take four months for him to complete his artwork when he returns from Bolivia. During his rare opportunities to access the internet, Sean sends updates about his travels. In his latest message he writes: “ There is instant inspiration here for me. The colors, architecture, people, and language are all extremely vibrant. My thoughts as to what the thesis will be for my series of paintings is starting to brew. I can’t wait to see what I will be thinking and creating in the next few days. Thanks again to the Academy and those from the AAU that have helped my project become a reality.”

Check back soon for more updates on Sean Anderson and for information about the planned exhibition of his work.

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