Mural Project with a group of children and youth in Laguna Beach- California.

July 2008

This year Endangered Planet Gallery and Foundation, the Iraqi Children’s Art Exchange and the Art Miles Mural Project is inviting a group of children and youth in Laguna Beach to use art to express their thoughts and feelings, their hopes and dreams for themselves and their country in the context of the current conflict in the Middle East.

Children and youth will have the unique opportunity to paint a large canvas mural, working with visiting Iraqi artist Qais Al-Sindy. When the US portion is completed, Mr. Al-Sindy--acting as a cultural ambassador-- will take the mural to Amman Jordan, to be completed by Iraqi refugee children working under his direction. Children on both sides of this cross-cultural project paint with the understanding that they are part of a important dialogue that can pave the way for a better, more peaceful future built on understanding and mutual respect. The finished mural is testimony to their willingness to work together to create a better world.

The mural is one of dozens that will be created in the US and in the Middle East as part of the Iraq Art Mile. This particular mural will be presented to Queen Rania of Jordan, in recognition and appreciation of her support for multicultural programs and activities for children and youth. The Queen is widely celebrated as a human rights activist in her own country.

The 4th of July event is part of The Art Miles Murals a project that emerged in support of the UNESCO Decade for Peace and Non-violence among the Children of the World: 2000-2010. More than 2,000 murals have already been painted by hundreds of thousands of people in more than 125 countries. There are 60 cultural exchange murals currently in progress. All 5000 murals will be displayed as a digitized “skin” of images on a modular framed, 4th pyramid of peace in Egypt in September 2010.

Qais Al-Sindy is a renowned artist and designated Art Mural Master. A small exhibition of his work will be hosted at the Endangered Planet Foundation on Art Walk Thursday, July 3, from 5-9 PM and the mural painting event will take place from 1-4 pm on Friday, July 4th, 2008.

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