Today, in our small town of Alameda, CA, and across the county, there are no art teachers in public elementary schools. Some young students do experience art through a volunteer program but many do not due to the lack of available parents, programs, teacher’s schedules, and funding.
The Kids’ Chalk Art Project is an event to celebrate the creative spirit of our kids, and it is also the launch of “Re-Enchanting the World Through Art,” a non-profit that supports and inspires children’s creativity and imagination.
Our first project is to collaboratively create the World’s Largest Chalk Drawing with the kids of Alameda from kindergarten through high school, and the greater community of the San Francisco Bay Area. We are attempting to break the Guinness World Record and plan on obtaining a satellite photograph of the artwork to promote our mission. The chalk drawing will be created over a two-week period, culminating with a multi-arts festival, open to the public, on the decommissioned Naval Air Base of Alameda Point on June 7, 2008.
Our next step in the bigger picture is to use our 501(c)3 non-profit to help support and develop long term sustainable creative art programs in the elementary schools. These projects could be to help financially support art teachers, supporting and updating the parent volunteer art docent programs, buying art supplies, and artist-in-residencies. Through art and these programs, kids can learn how to be creative, feel empowered to become problem solvers, build connections to technology and the environment, improve the local community, inspire other cities and states to do the same, and help to solve some of the world’s problems.
Leading the project is professional artist and dad Mark Wagner, who has leveraged his vision to create a team of dedicated, passionate professionals, and formed a collaboration with the City of Alameda, Alameda Education Foundation (AEF - our current non-profit connection), Alameda Unified School District (AUSD), and Alameda PTA Council.