By Leslie Lumeh
Mr. Leslie Lumeh, the Executive Director of the newly established Liberia Visual Arts Academy (“LiVArts”), announced that classes will begin September 6, 2010.
Lelie Lumeh | Founder of The Liberia Visual Arts Academy with his art work
The Liberia Visual Arts Academy has successfully registered as a non-profit organisation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Education in the Republic of Liberia.
The official mission of Liberia Visual Arts Academy is to “train young Liberians in the visual arts as a means to empower themselves, contribute to the creative vision of their communities, and promote understanding across cultures.” This will involve training in drawing, painting and photography, but eventually incorporate modern communication and design technologies such as photo editing software and the internet. Students will also learn about historical practices of indigenous art of the region as well as international trends in contemporary art and design.
Liberian citizens between the ages of 10-25 are eligible to apply to the Academy regardless of gender, creed, religion or physical handicap. The school has already accepted 15 students and plans to offer free tuition for up to 20 students who will receive a certificate of accomplishment after successfully completing two years of studies.
Mr. Lumeh will teach drawing and painting as part of the core curriculum as well as lecture on Art History. Mr. Bill E. Diggs will teach photography and Mr. Cyrus Cooper will teach cartooning. The school also hopes to someday welcome foreign artists to give workshops for advanced students.
Mr. Lumeh explains that soon after opening the Art of Heart Gallery in Monrovia in 2008, the time was right for a fully accredited academy devoted to the creative arts. “I noticed all these kids coming by my gallery every day, telling me ‘I can draw, please teach me how to paint like you’. Then I knew that there was a task ahead, more than just painting and selling art works – there was a need to nurture the talents of upcoming artists. And now is that time. I am sure this program will not only benefit the personal growth of the kids who participate, but also eventually contribute to the community and even the whole country.”
About the Executive Director
Upon his return from exile to war-torn Liberia in 2005, Leslie Lumeh has emerged as the most influential artist in his country. Mr. Lumeh’s public service billboards and cartoons in the Daily Observer newspaper, have given instruction and inspiration to thousands, as well as documenting Liberia’s post-war struggle for economic and political stability.
His paintings have been exhibited in numerous African countries as well as the United States. In 2008 Mr. Lumeh opened the Art of the Heart Gallery which has provided space for many of Liberia’s top artists to display their work in professional surroundings, the first of its kind in over a decade.
For more on Leslie Lumeh visit: http://www.leslie-lumeh.rlhub.com/
For more information on LiVArts please contact:
Liberia Visual Arts Academy
80 Camp Johnson Road, Monrovia LIBERIA
Tel. +231 6430483
Posted By: Maggie Otieno
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