Lily Speaks

June 28th, 2011

Email This Blog Post Email This Blog Post Filed under: New Village Commons— Laura Leone @ 10:32 am

“We need to take action and step in. We can light up our community and our world.” –Lily YehLily Yeh

The exceptional social pioneer and artist Lily Yeh, author of Awakening Creativity, recently spoke at the Big Learning Event held at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She discussed her past and current work in Philadelphia, China, and Rwanda in transforming individual communities and their environments through the power of art. While her projects aim to cultivate community spirit, Lily emphasizes that her work is always “co-creative,” explaining that the work she does is always for, with, and by the people, and can only belong to the people in the end.Awakening Creativity

“I didn’t teach them. I just give them opportunity and space and evoke their creativity. And I learned from them,” Lily describes.

In a world that is increasingly dominated by large and impersonal systems, how do we create a sense of intimacy in the environment in which we live? Lily believes that we can through restructuring our mind and utilizing our imagination. By a simple nurturing action, we can help build self-confidence in those who are forgotten, exploited, or disenfranchised and Lily identifies art as “one of the most accessible, democratic, nurturing, compassionate ways to include with people.” Through the power of art we are nurtured, we support one another, and we share, and that’s the process of Lily’s work. Lily’s organization, Barefoot Artists, works to empower communities and to preserve indigenous art and culture around the world.

Lily Yeh – 2011 UW-Madison Big Learning Event

For more information about Lily Yeh’s projects and Barefoot Artists, click here.

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