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NORWAY

We are living in times that are challenging our generosity as human beings and how we view others. 

Others belong to different cultures and consequently have a different religious outlook or value things differently than we do. The EU, which started out as an idea to avoid a third world war, and consequently is a giant peace project, is going through hard times. The refugee crisis is challenging many of us and our tolerance towards others. The right-wing movement is gaining a foothold and the US has a new president, largely due to anti-globalization sentiments and fear of others. 

I believe that in this climate we could do with a bit of focus on inclusiveness, generosity towards others, and the celebration of diversity. Without globalization, we would still be eating fish, meatballs, and potatoes in Norway and would never have tasted things like spaghetti (or Italian noodles as they call them in China), quesadillas, meze, or sushi. We would still be dancing to fiddles, without having discovered the tango, capoeira, taekwondo, or tai-chi. 

Our ambition for Art for All in the World in Sandefjord – officially opened by the Norwegian prime minister on 3 June – was to create a project that celebrates inclusiveness, tolerance, and diversity. And what better way to do it than to use colours showing ‘it takes all kinds to make a world’. Sandefjord is a small town by world standards (62,000 inhabitants), so the impact has been very visible for many.

 

MORE PROJECTS

 
Quito, Ecuador | 1995 During an education and awareness project for 6,000 street children of Quito, Ecuador, we learned of a large number of children living in Quito’s prisons and set out to create an environment that would inspire a sense of possibility and hope. We ran a diverse range of workshops inside the prison focusing on teaching practical skills and providing the children with an opportunity to engage and express themselves. This included the creation of a series of large murals on the prison walls. Building on these activities, we were then permitted to take the children out to the streets of Quito to paint walls and infuse colour to areas in need of regeneration. Many of the prisoners went on to exhibit and sell work at the Fundacion Guayasamin Museum and secure jobs following their release as a result of this project.

Quito, Ecuador | 1995

During an education and awareness project for 6,000 street children of Quito, Ecuador, we learned of a large number of children living in Quito’s prisons and set out to create an environment that would inspire a sense of possibility and hope. We ran a diverse range of workshops inside the prison focusing on teaching practical skills and providing the children with an opportunity to engage and express themselves. This included the creation of a series of large murals on the prison walls. Building on these activities, we were then permitted to take the children out to the streets of Quito to paint walls and infuse colour to areas in need of regeneration. Many of the prisoners went on to exhibit and sell work at the Fundacion Guayasamin Museum and secure jobs following their release as a result of this project.

Tegucigalpa, Honduras | 2004 In July of 2004, we went to Tegucigalpa, Honduras to promote and illustrate the UN’s Millennium Development Goals, which focused on addressing issues such as the eradication of poverty, conservation of natural resources and the environment, employment, gender equality and tackling HIV-AIDS. To do this, we integrated art into the urban landscape, giving artists the opportunity to channel their creativity towards the benefit of urban revitalization and the platform to inform and uplift a community through powerful messages. In total, 65 national and international artists from over 25 countries worldwide participated in the project and created 65 giant sculptures and murals, some as large as 150 metres, which were donated to the city. About 100 public and private companies collaborated in this venture and supported the project financially. Furthermore, over 300 volunteers from universities, schools, colleges and the local community banded together to help realize the artists’ visions.

Tegucigalpa, Honduras | 2004

In July of 2004, we went to Tegucigalpa, Honduras to promote and illustrate the UN’s Millennium Development Goals, which focused on addressing issues such as the eradication of poverty, conservation of natural resources and the environment, employment, gender equality and tackling HIV-AIDS.

To do this, we integrated art into the urban landscape, giving artists the opportunity to channel their creativity towards the benefit of urban revitalization and the platform to inform and uplift a community through powerful messages.

In total, 65 national and international artists from over 25 countries worldwide participated in the project and created 65 giant sculptures and murals, some as large as 150 metres, which were donated to the city. About 100 public and private companies collaborated in this venture and supported the project financially. Furthermore, over 300 volunteers from universities, schools, colleges and the local community banded together to help realize the artists’ visions.

Sevilla, Spain | 2010 Between September 27 and October 11, 2010, we were joined by 50 volunteers and 30 artists from across the world to create the biggest public art project in Spain’s history.  Sevilla’s Poligono San Pablo area is a neighbourhood of 1960s-era apartment blocks outside the city centre.  When we arrived it was crying for development and regeneration. Following our efforts it has become the cultural centre of Sevilla, and with it’s 40 giant murals and sculptures, it is barely recognisable from the place it once was.

Sevilla, Spain | 2010

Between September 27 and October 11, 2010, we were joined by 50 volunteers and 30 artists from across the world to create the biggest public art project in Spain’s history. 

Sevilla’s Poligono San Pablo area is a neighbourhood of 1960s-era apartment blocks outside the city centre.  When we arrived it was crying for development and regeneration. Following our efforts it has become the cultural centre of Sevilla, and with it’s 40 giant murals and sculptures, it is barely recognisable from the place it once was.

La Herradura, Spain | 2013 The aim of this initiative was to heighten public awareness of marine biodiversity in the world’s oceans and promote the protection of costal and marine areas like La Herradura, Spain. We organised this project in collaboration with the Almuñecar Town Council and we invited well-known artists such as Eduardo Baquerizo (Spain), Victor Ash (Denmark) and Nena Sanchez (Curaçao, Caribbean) to paint murals for this cause. Working with the community, we created an outdoor museum and new public areas for people to meet and congregate. The project succeeded in increasing awareness of this important topic and bringing new tourism and life to the area. New walls were even granted by the municipality to create more murals related to the topic.

La Herradura, Spain | 2013

The aim of this initiative was to heighten public awareness of marine biodiversity in the world’s oceans and promote the protection of costal and marine areas like La Herradura, Spain.

We organised this project in collaboration with the Almuñecar Town Council and we invited well-known artists such as Eduardo Baquerizo (Spain), Victor Ash (Denmark) and Nena Sanchez (Curaçao, Caribbean) to paint murals for this cause. Working with the community, we created an outdoor museum and new public areas for people to meet and congregate.

The project succeeded in increasing awareness of this important topic and bringing new tourism and life to the area. New walls were even granted by the municipality to create more murals related to the topic.

Amman, Jordan | 2014 Our project in Amman was centered around the topic of clean drinking water. Across the globe, 768 million people lack access to clean water, and, each day, 1,400 children die of contaminated water. We wanted to create awareness of this global issue through the power of art. To do this, We recruited 10 international artists and 80 volunteers who transformed the area with 15 giant murals, including the abandoned Amphitheatre, which now resembles the Acropolis. The Queen of Jordan came out in support of the project, visiting the murals and chatting with the volunteers. The murals now serve as a point of discussion for educators and community members in the surrounding areas, and we have trained another organization to replicate the project in other cities across Jordan.

Amman, Jordan | 2014

Our project in Amman was centered around the topic of clean drinking water. Across the globe, 768 million people lack access to clean water, and, each day, 1,400 children die of contaminated water.

We wanted to create awareness of this global issue through the power of art. To do this, We recruited 10 international artists and 80 volunteers who transformed the area with 15 giant murals, including the abandoned Amphitheatre, which now resembles the Acropolis.

The Queen of Jordan came out in support of the project, visiting the murals and chatting with the volunteers. The murals now serve as a point of discussion for educators and community members in the surrounding areas, and we have trained another organization to replicate the project in other cities across Jordan.