Free Arts Minnesota, Minneapolis Institute of Arts (MIA) and award-winning local artist Natasha Pestich have partnered to provide an eight-week interactive arts education experience to 100 students from several social-service agencies. The Identity Ink program features weekly classes connecting the art of screen printing to dialogue about individual identity, resulting in a final screen printing project that will be displayed at the MIA in August.
Identity Ink runs June through August and began with a visit to the MIA in June where students explored identity through nine artworks from the MIA collection. Weekly classes and discussions with Pestich will explore personal narratives on identity and will be applied to composition and design for the youth’s final screen print project. A public reception will be held at the MIA on Thursday, August 22, to celebrate and showcase more than 50 of the screen printed clothing (hoodies) created by the youth who participated in the Identity Ink program.
“The goal of the project is to offer access to an arts learning experience to young people for whom the cost of enrollment in art education would be prohibitive,” says Dan Thomas, executive director of Free Arts Minnesota. “We developed Identity Ink to give young people the experience of touring and thoughtfully reviewing an art exhibit at a major museum and the capability and encouragement to respond creatively to what they see.”
This project brings together three partners experienced in providing quality arts learning experiences. The MIA has been providing curriculum for many years through its Art Adventure program and school tours. Natasha Pestich is an associate professor at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD) with experience creating innovative workshops in printmaking. Free Arts has been offering art curriculum and mentors to at-risk children for more than 15 years.
This event was featured in several publications