The Memory Project: Humboldt High School Students Create Portraits for Nicaraguan Kids

 “Josman,” a painting by Jazminh Lambley a South Fork High School student was created from a photo of a Nicaraguan child.

Humboldt Arts Council Press Release:

The Youth Gallery at the Morris Graves Museum of Art features portraits created by South Fork High School Art Students.  The work, which is on display throughout the month of May, is part of The Memory Project, a unique initiative in which art students throughout the country create portraits for children and teens around the world who have been neglected, orphaned, or disadvantaged. Given that kids in such situations tend to have few personal keepsakes, the aim of the Memory Project is to provide them with special memories that capture a piece of their childhood – portable pieces of their personal history. As much as possible, the goal is to help the kids see themselves as works of art.

South Fork High School is the first school in Humboldt County to participate in this national endeavor.  In January, the students received photos of 16 children from Nicaragua and have spent the past three months studying portraiture and color theory in preparation to create the portraits in the media of their choosing.  Says South Fork High School Art teacher Sasha Lyth, “this is something I have wanted to do with students since stumbling upon the Memory Project website back in 2010.  It has been inspiring to watch my students challenge themselves as they create a work of art for someone they have never met, and for my students, participation in the Memory Project has been deeply meaningful, allowing them to really internalize the power of the Arts to not only communicate but also potentially create change.” Following the MGMA exhibition the portraits will be sent back to Memory Project headquarters where they will be packed up and hand delivered to the children as gifts this July. 

The Morris Graves Museum of Art, located at 636 F Street, Eureka is open to the public noon-5p.m., Wednesday through Sunday. Admission is $5 for adults; $2 for seniors (age 65 and over) and students with ID; children 17 and under free; Museum members are free. Admission is always free for everyone on the first Saturday of every month, including First Saturday Night Arts Alive!, 6-9 p.m. and KEET’s Kids Club at the MGMA.

Exhibition Dates:  May 3 through June 1

Reception Date:  First Saturday Night Arts Alive!, May 3rd, 6 to 9 p.m.

Museum Hours:  Wednesday – Sunday 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.

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