|Education for Global Citizenship (North South Centre)|
|Section one: Examples of global education materials|
|Theme IV: Art|
Television Series, Education Pack, Art Exhibition and Book
"The Right to Hope" project marked the 51th anniversary of the United Nations and UNESCO in 1995, two anniversaries that were reminders of hopes for a new order of peace, equity and environmental security. The project asserts the importance of social and cultural values in national and international affairs, as a means towards allowing humankind to live sustainably on planet Earth.
The project incorporates a Television Series, an Education Pack and a travelling Art Exhibition, as well as a Book linking art with development. All components Underline respect for traditional and indigenous cultures, along with shared international responsibility for creating a safe, equitable and just society. They also show how art can counteract prejudice and communicate across cultures to promote values for human survival and peace.
Creativity is particularly necessary when dealing with an intercultural approach to global education, and art can often be an effective starting point to avoid conveying negative images of other cultures. Today multimedia seems to be a keyword in education. With its inter-linkecJ components, "One World Art -The Right to Hope" is probably one of the most enjoyable multimedia educational projects that has been produced to date.
1. The Television Series - Broadcast in 1995, "The Right to Hope" was the second in the series of "One World Art" produced by the One World Group of Broadcasters. Forty short programmes were produced on the way culture links people and their aspirations, and how art can be used as a positive force for education and change. The television programmes (20 of which are to be broadcast by the BBC) profile artists from around the world. These are accompanied by an Education Pack, (see below) and a two-hour "One World Art" video including 10 of the programmes. Each programme stands on its own as a profile and statement of the artists or group of artists.
2. The Education Pack - Published by One World Support, UK, this Pack is designed for teachers and members of the public who have watched the programmes The Pack takes the lead from the issues that the artists raise on screen and includes key quotations and maps as well as information on the historical development of the various artistic techniques and the social issues to which they refer. In addition, it includes 10 laminated prints which are designed not only as keepsakes for viewers hut also as tools for the art classroom.
The Pack begins with a section entitled "Making Connections" which pinpoints some of the links that can he made between the artistic- techniques Used and the issues presented. The artworks are designed to communicate, and their visual language is supplemented by the artists' own explanations of the symbolism they use.
The issues raised by the artists are wide-ranging and complex. The value of women working together recurs, as does a deep feeling of connection with the natural world. Strongest, however, is the straggle for justice. The artists from Japan, Chile and the USA all speak as members of indigenous peoples working to preserve aspects of their traditional cultures. The artists from India and Turkey work, through their art, for the rights of minorities in danger. The pain and violence of injustice also comes through in the work of artists from Peru and Zimbabwe, and traditions of tolerance in Islam, Buddhism and Christianity are called on as sources of inspiration by the artists of Turkey, Korea and the Ukraine respectively. All in all, the material c-an provide a very rich resource for exploring cultural values and identity and how they relate to social cohesion and conflict.
3. The Art Exhibition - This travelling exhibition, c-onveying the links between artists' work in the context of development, was a long-time ambition of its director Catherine Thick, former director of the International Earth Art Exhibition and series consultant for the One World Art television programmes in 1994 and 1995. In October 1995, c-oinciding with the UN's 50th anniversary, the exhibition had its premiere in South Africa and is scheduled to travel for two years to countries of all continents, beginning with Egypt and moving on to the Palestinian National Authority, Israel, Northern Ireland, Eastern Europe, India, Australia, Chile and the United Nations. The exhibition includes approximately 50 pieces
- paintings, sculptures and installations - by artists from Asia, Africa and Latin America, many of whom are featured in the television series. The exhibition is arranged so as to include a small theatre where visitors can watch selected films from the series and obtain written material. Each exhibit is accompanied by the artist's own explanation of why such a piece was developed and by a definition of the related artistic tradition. The exhibition also provides artists with a vehicle to describe conditions in their homelands from their own perspective and to show differences in the context and origin of art forms worldwide.
4. The Book - Entitled "The Right to Hope - Global Problems, Global Visions: Creative Responses to our World in Need", this publication is a 94-page collection of essays and images covering a broad range of disciplines from global governance, religion and media to science, economics and philosophy. Although the essays vary in their perspective and content, there is one overriding message: in a time of environmental destruction and entrenched poverty, we need to emphasise the importance of social, cultural and spiritual values in national, institutional and global affairs if humanity is to live together sustainably. Securing a better world cannot be left to treaties, economics and technologies alone; our efforts must be founded on human initiative, political will and creative wit.
The Book, edited by Catherine Thick, is produced by the Right to Hope Trust. Directed towards an adult audience, it has popular appeal yet is highly informative and brings together over sixty artists and writers from around the world. Among the contributors to the essays are: Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Wangari Maathai, Nafis Sadik, Vandana Shiva and Shridath Ramphal. The foreword is written by Nelson Mandela.
The Right to Hope project will go a long way to filling a conspicuous gap in the arts and humanities resources currently available.