Today we welcome Michigan State University’s Associate Professor and Sculpture Coordinator Laura Cloud to the blog with her Global Arts & Culture Collaboration: Snares to Wares Project as part of the 25th Anniversary of Arts Weekend presented by Michigan State University College of Arts & Letters.
Global Arts and Culture Collaboration: Snares to Wares Project
My talk for Michigan State University’s College of Arts and Letters Arts Weekend will discuss a very special collaboration between MSU and Uganda, between the Department of Fisheries and Wildlife and the Department of Art, Art History and Design, and between Conservation Efforts and Sculpture.
The Snares to Wares Initiative is dedicated to improving human livelihood and to protecting wildlife. In December 2017 I was contacted by Robert Montgomery, Assistant Professor, Fisheries and Widlife and co-director of ReCap Lab and Titulo Mudumba, MSU PhD candidate, Fisheries and Wildlife and co-director of ReCap Lab about a possible collaboration. This collaboration resulted in the construction of a 12ft. full-scale Rothchild giraffe now on permanent display in MSU’s IQ building.
The Snares to Wares project, a community-based conservation initiative,works to remove wire snares from the Murchison Falls National Park protecting wildlife and generating employment revenue for local artisans by establishing a workshop that re-purposes the snares to create sculptures of endangered animals. 250 local artists are employed by the Snares to Wares Initiative with proceeds flowing directly back into the community.
MSU undergraduate student, Richard Tanner, assisted two Ugandan artists, Mutalib Ngomojik, and Sophia Jingo.Sculpture/Ceramics technical support staff, Michael McCune was quick to join the Sculpture team. For 3 months starting at the end of January when Mutalib and Sophia first arrived in E. Lansing until the giraffe was completed on April 20, 2018 the ReCAP Lab team and the MSU Sculpture team worked closely together. Through long hours, hard work and shared ideas a strong friendship developed between both groups.
We are continuing the collaborative efforts with the return in March 2019 of two Ugandan artists Sophia Jingo and Charles Adler. The Sculpture team will be helping to construct the legendary lion, Butcherman. Commisioned by the Detroit Zoo, Butcherman will become part of their permanent collection.
In May the Sculpture team will travel to Pakwach, Uganda located on the Alvert Nile River and close to Uganda’s largest national park, Murchison Falls National Park. Uganda is a growing and developing culture that is having to make decisions with strong environmental impacts concerning oil drilling, endangered animals, economic challenges etc. We will be interacting with the artisan workshop and the local community.
I am looking forward to sharing the results of our exciting collaborations with you at this year’s Arts Weekend.
presented by the Michigan State University College of Arts & Letters.