At the Foundation’s first board meeting, one board member suggested that we fund a project where teens engage in making art. “Let it be a piece in which the teens could express their voice through creativity, perhaps something with a social message. Let them put the Foundation’s mission into action through a creative process”. We envisioned that this work of art would be big, include as many teens as possible, and that with motivation and planning, perhaps the piece (whatever it was) could be installed at the “Candle and the Heart” concert. The hope was to empower teens to take this project on.
With the guidance of a few adults, five teens got together for an initial planning session. After much brainstorming and collective soul searching, they decided to create a piece that was based on nature. The theme of the seasons was explored, and then was transformed into a solitary tree. Their vision was guided by Maya’s love for nature. The group scheduled several days to create the piece. Given space constraints, the number of artists involved in the project needed to be limited. The original five teens invited a few other teen artists to join. In addition, a group of teen artists from a local studio, “Roost” participated. In total, about fourteen young people contributed to the mural.
The mural was on display at the April benefit concert. The three panel tree design was a magnificent backdrop for the performers and was then on exhibit at the Unframed Artists Gallery on Huguenot Street.