Cultureworks in the community
Thanks to everyone who made it possible for us to expand our programming into the Holland community over the past year!
In beautiful downtown Holland, Treehuis hosted our Character Design and Advanced Digital Photography studios. It was wonderful to introduce our students to the concept of a collaborative professional workspace and gain access to nearby parks and 8th street. Additionally, our Student Advisory Council discussed the need for a theater class, so we offered that at the historic Park Theatre this past semester. Students gained confidence and skills in character development, memorization, and storytelling as they staged their own versions of the True Story of the Three Little Pigs and the Frog Prince, Continued. We also held a class at the Outdoor Discovery Center, where we were able to explore the trails, draw birds of prey from life, and create characters from natural elements. And, we offered a Book Club Arts class at the Herrick Library, where students worked with a professional illustrator, developed characters and settings, and wrote poetry and short narratives with a student from Hope College majoring in creative writing.
Awakening - Hope College
In June of 2018, cultureworks executive director Emily CHRISTENSen joined the staff of awakening, a week long camp for those interested in worship and the arts in the christian church.
We explored the history of the visual arts in the church across cultures and what it means to pursue our creative work with honesty, excellence, and vulnerability. Students led a beautiful 2-hour celebration of worship at the end of the week. Learn more about awakening here: hope.edu/awakening or connect with them on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/awakeningathope/
Student work on exhibit at Lakeshore Health Partners
We are so grateful for the opportunity to display student artwork at Lakeshore Health Partners! Please stop by, and visit the gallery.
904 South Washington Ave.
Holland, MI 49423
Outdoor Discovery Center - Ecosystem Exploration Day
Cultureworks Emily CHRISTENS led a nature drawing breakout session for the oDC exploration day in March, 2018. Over 680 students attended, and an estimated 350 worked on sketches and learned about the history of naturalism, how drawing from nature impacts film and book illustration, and how drawing from life can help us see better and think more creatively.
Third Reformed Church Community art night
With help from the magnificent ava, cultureworks offered a paper marbling and ink workshop at 3rd reformed church community art night, January 2018
BiG read 2016 - story, art, community
CultureWorks joined and the Big Read Student Advisory Team to host an afternoon of art in response to story. Featuring unique immigration stories from West Michigan young adults followed by a creative response led by a local artist. November, 2016
PEOPLE LIKE US | A short film exploring the stigmas + shame surrounding mental illness. (3:08)
JUDGE'S AWARD FOR "BEST FILM" IN STUDENT CATEGORY OF THE SAUGATUCK SHORTS FILM FESTIVAL
With a goal of creating a youth leadership council, we piloted an Open Studio class in February of 2015. Now in it’s third session, each lasting twelve weeks, our Open Studio class, aka “The League of Legendary Leaders,” have taken their work to a new level. Each month, students select a topic of interest affecting them and their peers, explore it to understand more deeply, create collaboratively and engage the community.
Their latest collaborative effort, “People Like Us,” won the Judge’s award for “Best Film” in the student category of the Saugatuck Shorts Film Festival. The top ten submissions from 2015's film competition, chosen by a panel of judges from the entertainment industry, were enjoyed by over 200 people at the festival on November 7th. The students received a $500 prize and announced to the audience that they agreed as a group to donate the award to CultureWorks, so that others would be able to have experiences like this.
The class instructor Erin Drews explains, “The students were all very passionate about the topic of mental illness, because they all have come into contact with it at some level and see it as real, tangible and raw.” Jack Burk, the volunteer videographer said, “it was encouraging to see the 14 and 15-year-olds uniting over a common cause, and caring about things that matter.” The short film, which creatively challenges stigmas surrounding mental illness can be viewed here.
Karyl Morin, Executive Director of CultureWorks, noted the emotion that is evoked by the film. “The powerful message of empathy in response to the stigma of mental illness shows the great depth our youth can offer when encouraged to apply their creative confidence on a topic of their choosing. Our high school open studio at CultureWorks is a place for students to be leaders for positive change through creating in community.”
Odalis Medellin, CultureWorks student and member of the League of Legendary Leaders said she was “proud about what the group had accomplished, and excited to be part of something that has the potential to help people.”