Memorial Day weekend: Saint Paul Public Library will be closed May 23 - 25.

East Side Libraries Host Interactive Cultural Exploration Events

Date: Apr 14th, 2011

SAINT PAUL, MN - Cultural Exploration, a series of free cultural art workshops sponsored by the Saint Paul Public Library and ArtStart, will be offered at libraries on Saint Paul's East Side. Children will learn different practices such as Japanese windsocks and Brazilian Carnival costuming and make their own project.

"We are very excited to provide our youth visitors with an opportunity to learn about world cultures and new forms of expression through art," said Sarah Bozeman, project manager for the Cultural Exploration workshops at Saint Paul Public Library.

Children will learn the background behind Mexican, Indian, Chinese, West African, Brazilian, Japanese, or Cuban art traditions and the process of creating the art. Professional artists who work through ArtStart will teach the workshops. All the necessary materials for each project are provided. The workshops are for children in grades 3 through 6.

Cultural Exploration is a new collaboration between ArtStart and the Saint Paul Public Library. ArtStart is a local non-profit arts organization that incorporates the connection between humans and their environment, focusing on a multicultural and interdisciplinary view of the world and stresses the use of recycled supplies.

All Cultural Exploration workshops are funded by Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.

Library Locations hosting Cultural Exploration events:

Sun Ray Library, 2105 Wilson Ave, St. Paul, 651-501-6300:

  • Folk Arts of Mexico-Basket Weaving on Saturday, January 15 at 2 p.m. Learn the art of backstrap weaving with artists from ArtStart. Create a simple loom and using a variety of colorful yarns, weave a small placemat or coaster to take home with you.

Dayton's Bluff Library, 645 East 7th Street, St. Paul, 651-793-1699

  • Batik from Indian on Sunday, January 16 at 2 p.m. Join us to learn about Indian culture and textile arts as you create your own colorful batik, working safely with wax, cloth and dyes. You can wear your batik, frame it, or use it to decorate your room.
  • Carnival Costuming from Brazil on Monday, January 31 at 2 p.m. join us to learn about the Brazilian Carnival tradition. Then create your own headdress, other costume elements, and a noisemaker, using a variety of glitzy materials.

Hayden Heights Library, 1456 White Bear Avenue, St. Paul, 651-739-3934

  • Animals of China in Pen and Ink Saturday, January 22 at 2 p.m. Learn the art and technique of Chinese ink and brush painting. Then looking at animals such as the panda bear, the Japanese crane, and the Carp fish, practice your brush techniques and create your own Japanese scroll to display somewhere special in your home.
  • Mexican folk arts and drawing on Saturday, February 19 at 2 p.m. Learn about the Oaxacan animal sculptures known as juegetes as related in the storybook "The Dream Carver." Then draw your own Oaxacan "dream animal" using repeating patterns typical of the Oaxacan style.

Arlington Hills Branch Library, 1105 Greenbrier Street, St. Paul, 651-793-3930

  • African Arts: From Weaving to Prints on Wednesday, January 26 at 3 p.m. Learn the meaning of traditional Adinkrh symbols. Choose your favorite symbols and create your own stamps, then using fabric paint, print your own pattern on cloth.
  • Windsocks from Japan on Friday, February 4 at 2 p.m. The Carp fish is an important symbol in Japanese culture. Work with an artist to create a windsock in the shape of a Carp. Then decorate with marker to create fish scales and other features. Add string and watch it soar on the wind, just like a kite.

Rice Street, 1011 Rice Street, St. Paul, 651-558-2223

  • Cuban Cigar Box Art on Tuesday, February 15 at 4:30 p.m. The Cuban cigar box becomes your personal treasure box. Work with an artist to paint and decorate your cigar box with collaged images, found objects, and words.