In order to form a new society in which young people can develop innovative solutions to eliminate existing grievances, they must first learn to think freely.
Liberia lacks this space for free development. Art and design are not integrated into the regular school curriculum and art has no place in society outside of school activities.
This not only has the consequence that the young generation is not supported artistically and the art scene is hardly present in the country, but above all that it is difficult for young people to take responsibility for themselves, to speak for themselves and to represent their own views.
Art is closely linked to culture and culture and has an influence not only on the development of one’s own individual identity, but also on that of an entire country. Identification with a common culture can help bring people closer together and create peace. Due to the influence of Western states and the consequences of the civil war and the associated destruction, a country-specific culture is hardly recognizable. The young generation is increasingly losing its connection to its own origins and is striving instead for a supposedly better western lifestyle.
Together with the organisation Union of Liberian Artists we have therefore organised a one-week art and creative workshop in which the main aim was to teach children and young people how to create art from simple materials and “garbage”. Some of the children come from poor backgrounds and do not attend school due to a lack of financial resources. We would like to offer further workshops and regular lessons together with the trained and experienced art teacher Isaak Doubor and other volunteers.
In addition to promoting creativity, this could be an opportunity for young people to learn a craft that can help them not only make a living in the future, but also contribute to financing their education.