Art for change: Taking on the taboo in underserved communities


August 2016 — Art can be a powerful medium in discussing typically taboo subjects. In underserved communities all over developing cities, art -- in the form of graffiti, theater, song and dance -- is playing an important role in giving voice to difficult conversations. In Accra, for example, art is helping a marginalized Muslim community better integrate into their neighborhood and surrounding communities. This month, we'll explore a variety of powerful projects that are getting creative in how they are making cities better for all.

El Arte del paisajismo en un barrio

Caracas, 25 agosto 2016 — La ciencia ha demostrado que los espacios verdes, las plantas y las flores pueden tener un efecto armonizador en la experiencia psico-social que tiene los ciudadanos en base a su ciudad. En muchas ocasiones, las ciudades inviertan mucha plata publica en rear jardines comunes para recrear a sus ciudadanos, pero estos nunca llegan a los barrios la cual se encuentra cual literalmente en la periferia de los dissents verdes de las ciudades. Es así que el programa social encuentra un espacio estratégico para mostrar como el arte del dissents de jardines dentro de los sectores informales puede crear cambio social, disminuir crimen y hasta enorgullece a los miembros activos de su entorno. Conozcan el programa llamado, “Con las Flores Esta la Union” del grupo Elementos Urbanos la cual basa su programa social en las flores, biodiversidad, habitat, y el dissent social la cual juegan un factor predominante en areas informales. Leer más.

(Re)Tratos nas ruas

Curitiba, 24 ‎agosto 2016 — Em Curitiba, um projeto de fotografia tem mostrado o poder da arte – e da empatia – como ferramentas de promoção da autonomia, do protagonismo e da reinserção de moradores de rua, dependentes químicos e pessoas com sintomas de transtornos mentais. Neste artigo, conheça o Re-Tratos da Rua.Leia mais.

El arte urbano le cambia la cara a la comuna 13 de Medellín

Medellin, 23 agosto 2016 — En una comuna deprimida de Medellín, el hip hoppermitiócomunicar un mensaje de paz y mostrar que el arte y el trabajo comunitario son medios de resistencia a la vida delincuencial y al conflicto. El arte cambióla percepción que los habitantes tienen de su barrio y mejoró la reputación de la comunidad. Leer más.

Social development through art

Chittagong, 22 August 2016 — Along the southern coastline of Chittagong lies the world’s largest ship-breaking yard. Thousands of people work hazardous jobs to cut down giants of the ocean into salvageable metal and make a living on less than two dollars a day. See more.

Mural sebagai bentuk Seni Urban dan Perlawanan Sosial

Surabaya, 19 August 2016 — Seni mural menjadi salah satu bentuk perlawanan terhadap fenomena ketidakadilan sosial di masyarakat. Kelompok Serikat Mural Surabaya merupakan salah satu pelaku aktif mural sebagai seni perlawanan. Komunitas ini merupakan gabungan siapa saja dengan visi serupa. Mereka bekerjasama lintas komunitas dan bersama dengan warga kampung menyuarakan kegelisahan fenomena kemiskinan di perkotaan. Baca lebih lanjut.

O teatro pode transformar a realidade?

Rio de Janeiro, 18 agosto 2016 — Como um grupo de jovens mulheres da Maré encontrou no Teatro do Oprimido uma maneira de falar abertamente sobre temas tabu em sua comunidade, como machismo e racismo. Leia mais.

Talking about arts and crafts in Dar es salaam, Tanzania

Dar es Salaam, 17 August 2016 — Tanzania has a long tradition of creating imaginative and thought-provoking art. Artwork is a way that the country preserves its heritage and shares the unique qualities of the culture, history, and environment of Tanzania. Tanzanian art culture is a diverse mix of influences with over 120 tribes which includes Makonde tribal carving, Tinga Tinga paintings, and Zanzibar carved doors and many others. Art in Tanzania is also important part of the country's national identity, and in that sense it's connected to the everyday world of regular people here. See more.

On community radio, music builds a shared space for the subaltern

Delhi, 16 August 2016 — Gurgaon, Delhi’s glitzy suburb, has been in the news lately for a gargantuan traffic jam triggered by faulty drainage and flooded roads during a heavy shower in the last week of July, unleashing a spate of fury over the city’s lack of planning and poor infrastructure. It’s not only the physical aspects like water supply, drainage and road design that was ignored, however, during Gurgaon’s exponential growth since the early ‘90s.See more.

Punk - Antara Musik, Seni dan Aktivisme

Jakarta, 15 August 2016 — Kelompok punk kerap dianggap aneh dalam masyarakat Indonesia. Dengan model rambut mohawk, celana jeans belel, bertato, dan beragam aksesoris yang dipakai membuat kelompok minoritas punk ini menjadi sasaran ocehan dan mendapat cap buruk di mata masyarakat. Namun kelompok musik punk Taring Babi di Jakarta menunjukkan hal sebaliknya dan bahkan berperan lebih dalam komunitas mereka tinggal. Baca lebih lanjut.

Prefeitura amplia apoio para projetos de inclusão social por meio da tecnologia

São Paulo, 12 agosto 2016 — Com o Programa Redes e Ruas, prefeitura apoia ações para inclusão social com uso de ferramentas digitais em praças, ruas e centros culturais. Nas atividades do Ponto de Cultura é de Lei, uma das 59 ONGs que receberam apoio financeiro na primeira edição do programa, ano passado, fosse um morador de rua no centro ou uma criança na periferia, todos eram convidados para produzir e compartilhar fotografias e vídeos. Este ano, a prefeitura recebeu 235 propostas que articulam cidadania e tecnologia de ponta em toda a cidade. Leia mais.

The Talking Walls: Strengthening community cohesion

Nairobi, 11 August 2016 — Street art has been used globally for creating public socio-political spaces of engagement. However, in Kenya, street art has, overtime, been seen as a tool of rebellion and vandalism. In Nairobi city, in particular, the concerned officials have come out to fight it, calling for youth to be given space to express themselves and earn a living. Street artists in Nairobi hope to open community dialogue towards positive social transformation. See more.

Estación Arte Viva de la Sabana: usando el arte como motor de transformación social

Bogotá, 10 agosto 2016 — Una estación de tren dilapidada en pleno centro de Bogotá ha sido parcialmente restaurada con el objetivo de convertirla en un espacio destinado a la creación y las representaciones artísticas. Una escuela de circo ha sido la primera iniciativa en un Proyecto que busca utilizar el arte y la creatividad como motor de recuperación de un barrio sumamente deteriorado. Leer más.

Reclaiming spaces for public leisure and community participation

Lagos, 9 August 2016 — Rapid population growth in Lagos continues to exert pressure on available resources, including public infrastructure and spaces. In 2008, the city’s administrator commenced a beautification program by reclaiming spaces and converting them into parks and gardens. This has not only added to the aesthetics of the city but is also fostering community participation and promoting a greener and cleaner environment. See more.

Can art help heal the lingering effects of apartheid planning?

Johannesburg, 8 August 2016 — Subjected to the constraints of apartheid planning and legislation during the height of the former regime, the suburb of Westbury in Johannesburg still experiences the resultant hardships of this spatial legacy. Artist and architect Lorenzo Nassimbeni was commissioned to create a public mural to adorn the walls and amphitheater of a major public space investment into the area and showed how art can be a medium for social change.
See more.

Accra’s marginalized integrate their community through art

Accra, 5 August 2016 — A low-income, Muslim neighbourhood in Accra has faced stigmatization that has even prevented community members from getting jobs. An organization, Nima Muhinmanchi Art, has been using art – painting, photography, and writing – to create a more cohesive and understanding community. See more.

Drama to Empower: Can theater reduce likelihood of prostitution?

Mumbai, 4 August 2016 — Mumbai’s Kamathipura is one of Asia’s oldest and largest red light districts. Exploitation is rampant, resulting in many girls being coerced into second-generation prostitution. The Apne Aap Women’s Collective (AAWC) collaborates with the Theatre Act to conduct weekly theater workshops for young girls living in Kamathipura to help them develop a skill-set that won’t force them to follow in their mother’s footsteps. See more.

SALUD-ARTE

Mexico D.F., 3 augosto 2016 — La marginación y bajo desempeño escolar se combaten con un programa nutricional y artístico en escuelas públicas de la Ciudad de México. Leer más.

Creatively reimagining space under flyovers

Bangalore, 2 August 2016 — With few public spaces left in the city, is it time to reimagine the space under flyovers as the new public space? Addressing issues of sanitation and hygiene, citizens and civil society have come together to reclaim this unmanaged space in Bengaluru city. See more.

MULI: llevando el arte y los museos a la gente

Cali, 1 agosto 2016 — MULI fue creado hace cuatro años con la idea de acercar a los artistas colombianos con su público. Acciones educativas, performances y arte público han demostrado desde entonces la capacidad del arte de impactar en las comunidades. En septiembre comienza su tercera bienal dedicada al arte público y muralismo. Leer más.

 

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Comments

How small things ( we take for granted) can go a long way in improving the lives of these workers, especially women is starkly visible in this comment I heard from a woman in a rehabilitation society in Mumbai, who had for the first time got access to a toilet in her home: I finally feel I have got the freedom: freedom to even eat and drink what I want and when I want.

Hello Peter,

that's a very interesting article about public parks and gardens in Lagos. Many initiatives in public space in the other cities from our network are started by citizens themselves, therefore it is great to see "the other side" and to know that governments are also working on providing better public spaces. However, I can imagine that this is difficult for two reasons: Like you said, there are not that many visitors yet in the new public spaces. Do you know if there are any initiatives to encourage citizens to use these spaces more? Or do officials trust that this will come with time?
Also, I was wondering whether the general feeling in the public towards this parks and gardens initiative is positive or whether citizens think that maybe other, more urgent issues should be tackled first?

Best wishes, Laura.

María Fernanda Carvallo's picture

Jorge, la iniciativa que presentes es un gran proyecto para recuperar espacios públicos desgastados, así como para acercar el arte a la gente con valores cívicos. Es una gran idea, me pregunto si conoces de donde salen los fondos para financiar la operación del programa, y si esta iniciativa podría ser sustentable para presentarla ne otras localidades.

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