In 2012, Brendan O’Connell, an artist in Bentonville, Arkansas, was disheartened by a nationwide lack of support for the arts and the waning confidence he was starting to see in kids about their own art-making. He worked with the Bentonville school district to organize an art event, and thought that if he could inspire a few hundred kids to participate in a collaborative art project, he’d be satisfied. To his amazement (and delight), over 8,000 elementary-school children enthusiastically participated. With such an amazing turnout, he had to find a sizeable location—a football field!—to display all the children’s artwork.
Shortly after this momentous event, O’Connell partnered with a team of like-minded people and the idea for Everyartist Live! was born. Everyartist’s purpose is to spark human creativity and democratize the art-making experience. As its name suggests, Everyartist believes that everyone can be an artist. A little encouragement and opportunity are all that is needed.
The dream that started in Arkansas has grown to awe-inspiring proportions. Today, Thursday, November 21, 2013, Everyartist Live! hopes to set a world record as the largest art event ever, with a goal of recruiting over one million children to participate by creating and sharing an artwork. This time, instead of being laid out on a football field, the artwork will be digitally photographed and displayed online. Schools, museums, galleries, community leaders, and parents from all around the country will come together for this virtual art event to demonstrate that creativity matters.
If you would like to be a part of this nationwide collaborative project, join us today in the Boone Children’s Gallery. Education staff will provide the materials, offer encouragement, and even upload your artwork for you. After, you can go online to see your images alongside what we hope will be millions more! You might even be able to add “co-world-record-maker” to your list of accomplishments.
We have gotten a jumpstart on creating art for this event, with visitors making images on the theme of gratitude.
LACMA’s Education and Public Programs Department is excited to participate in this project because we believe that making art, and inhabiting the role of an artist, helps people better understand the creative process, build greater connections to art, and see in new and different ways. Many of our programs offer LACMA visitors opportunities to make art, and in the Boone Children’s Gallery, we facilitate this experience on a daily basis for kids and adults alike. Last year, over 70,000 people joined us in the Boone to experiment with art materials, practice techniques, make personal connections to LACMA’s collections, and to have fun.
If you can’t make it today to the Boone Children’s Gallery, you can participate in Everyartist Live! on your own—at home or school, with friends or family. Visit everyartist.me for more info.
Karen Satzman, Director, Youth and Family Programs