Editorial: Art camp keeps Native culture alive

"They may have been in the early stages of weaving a rug, but the students in the Native Youth Art Camp were weaving more than yarn. It is likely they will discover they have weaved a memory of a culture and an art that will remain with them forever.

The second annual camp, held at San Juan College, was created to expand the artistic values of the American Indian culture, said Cindy McNealy, gallery coordinator at the college. "For them (the artists) to get in touch with their cultural arts, the Native American culture is just amazing and it's so diverse, there's so much art and beauty in it and we want them to be aware of that."

With more American Indians leaving the reservation — and all too often, their culture — behind them when they become adults, they also leave the arts, which are so important to their heritage.

The camp provides the opportunity for aspiring artists to learn the art of weaving, to visit with a sculptor, have a session with a pot maker, enjoy a day of mixed media and paintin, and discover the intricacies of basket weaving. In addition, the students will take trips to Santa Fe and Taos, where they will take in museums, galleries and studios.

The camp targets young people who enjoy the arts and would like to pursue art as a career. The camp's mission is to provide direction for the young artists and instruction on how they can enjoy a career in art."

Get the Story:
Editorial: Keeping important traditions alive (The Farmington Daily Times 7/27)

Relevant Links:
San Juan College - http://www.sjc.cc.nm.us

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