Each year I try to do a project with my art students that makes them think about the impact their artwork can have. Last year we participated in the Global Art Project for Peace. When I read about the Butterfly Project I knew we had to contribute.
"The Butterfly Project" is hosted by The Holocaust Museum in Houston Texas, USA. The Holocaust Museum Houston is dedicated to educating people about the Holocaust, remembering the 6 million Jews and other innocent victims and honoring the survivors' legacy. Using the lessons of the Holocaust and other genocides, we teach the dangers of hatred, prejudice and apathy.
Stop Hate. Starting Here.
On my other blog outside-the-lines I wrote about the give a damn campaign so I knew I had to not only get involved but help spread the word.What is this all about?
The Butterfly Project mandate is to remember the 1,500,000 innocent children who perished as a result of the Holocaust by collecting 1.5 million handmade butterflies. In Spring 2013, these butterflies will then become an exhibition to serve as a memory of this event.
Why a butterfly? Good question. They chose a butterfly based on this poem:
I Never Saw Another Butterfly
The last, the very last,
So richly, brightly, dazzlingly yellow
Perhaps if the sun’s tears would sing
against a white stone....
Such, such a yellow
Is carried lightly ’way up high.
It went away I’m sure
because it wished
to kiss the world good-bye.
For seven weeks I’ve lived in here
Penned up inside this ghetto.
But I have found what I love here.
The dandelions call to me
And the white chestnut branches in the court.
Only I never saw another butterfly.
That butterfly was the last one.
Butterflies don’t live in here, in the ghetto.
Written by Pavel Friedman, June 4, 1942
Born in Prague on Jan. 7, 1921.
Deported to the Terezin Concentration Camp on April 26, 1942.
Died in Auschwitz on Sept. 29, 1944.
My oldest daughter is the same age as the young man who wrote this and died at the age of 23. I have three other children...living their lives in freedom....I see a butterfly as a symbol of hope and beauty in an ugly world. So many dreams died with each child ... so much potential lost.
I have to make a butterfly. My students will be making butterflies too. (They have a wonderful curriculum for educators here) I will tell them a little bit about the Holocaust - about the children. You see children are innocent and tragic casualties of war. Not just a war that happened 65 years ago but the wars that are happening today.
So, I am inviting each one of you who read this to take the time to make a butterfly.
"Children are the world's most valuable resource and its best hope for the future”
John F Kennedy
Will you join me? Make a butterfly? This link will take you to some wonderful free butterfly patterns
With a nod to Gandhi- I am going to be the change I want to see in the world.
This is what I want to do. I want you to make a butterfly. Follow the instructions as outlined by the Holocaust Museum highlighted in green below. When your copyright free butterfly is completed, pop it into an envelope including your name, email and blog or web address and mail it to:
PO Box 74
Carroll, IA USA 51401
Artworks Studio DEADLINE - May 1st 2012!!!!
I would like to take a picture of each butterfly I receive and post them in my art room for my students to see and on my blog. As soon as your butterfly arrives I will take a picture of it and then email you that it arrived safe and sound. I will also let you know via email when I post the butterflies on my blog. I will then send off ALL of the butterflies to Houston. (I have borrowed this idea from Trudi Sissons - Two Dresses Studio)
If you want to borrow this idea from me and have your own Butterfly event please feel free to do so. Let me know about it so I can see how your project is coming. If you just want to make a butterfly and send it directly to the museum the address is below. Butterflies need to be received at the museum by June 30th, 2012.
Holocaust Museum Houston
c/o Butterfly Project
5401 Caroline St.
Houston, TX 77004
~Instructions for Making the Butterfly ~
•Butterflies should be no larger than 8 inches by 10 inches.
•Butterflies may be of any medium the artist chooses, but two-dimensional submissions are preferred.
•Glitter and all glitter-related products should not be used.
•Food products (cereal, macaroni, candy, marshmallows or other perishables) also should not be used.