Avenues 2nd grade students have been taking part in an amazing global art collaboration for the second year in a row. A program called Crossroads joins Avenues New York, Avenues São Paulo, Jan Kath gallery and Kathmandu’s Kelsang Primary School in a yearlong carpet-design and pen-pal partnership. In the fall, Avenues New York students in 2nd, 7th, 8th and 12th grades took an expedition to Jan Kath's gallery space to view and touch carpets, learn about the process of making a carpet by hand, participate in carpet design activities and ask lots of questions.
Avenues New York 2nd, 7th and 8th grade students took the information that they learned at Jan Kath and combined it with new studies in narrative story-making and design in order to collaboratively make a carpet design in art class. The groups had practice sessions and many discussions before completing their final artwork. Each class has one collaboratively designed carpet that will be made into a real carpet, and every student in the class had a chance to contribute an image or a line, or to add color to the design.
Avenues New York 12th grade students completed their carpet design through digital photography, then explored alternative methods of photo construction. Students had many discussions with the people at Jan Kath gallery before deciding upon their final work.
Avenues São Paulo 2nd grade students completed their carpet design through collage and digital modification. They experimented with torn shapes of paper and different digital background colors, and held many discussions as part of their collaborative process.
They have sent the designs to Nepal, where they will be turned into a pattern of knots that can be followed by carpet makers. Soon, the process of dyeing and spinning yarns will be completed and students’ beautiful designs will be made into real carpets! The labor-intensive process of making a carpet by hand takes three to four months. While they wait, they are in the process of launching a pen-pal partnership with students across the globe. Additionally, the Kelsang Primary students are currently designing carpets.
Approximately 17 carpets will be exhibited at a gallery show at Jan Kath, which will open in late May. All carpets will be auctioned off, with funds going to support Kelsang Primary School.
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