Joy Spika uses art to empower and engage people. To help them find their inner creative strengths. She has always used art as a way to communicate and express herself. It was a necessary part of her existence since she can remember. Her art is a tool that she uses to connect with others through her experiences and perspective. It can also be very therapeutic. When she shows other people ways to do that for themselves, it helps them add to their own metaphorical tool belt, and that is why teaching is important to her. Not everyone knows how outputs like art making can be integral to their experience, and sometimes it isn’t, but showing up and giving that opportunity is important.
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As a teaching artist, Joy identifies the strengths of individuals in the classroom and helps everyone learn to use those individual skills to work as a group. Teaching collaboration is very important to Joy, because in those opportunities young people can learn necessary life skills that can apply in so many ways. She thinks of the classroom as an incubator for learning how to approach life. She teaches young people how to identify skills within themselves and in each other, and learn how to apply those strengths to the community they build together.
As a visual artist, Joy works in multimedia and large scale murals. She likes to work with people to create their own visual language using imagery to tell a story. This kind of story telling can be done in many ways using color, shapes, people, animals, and more. Each project is unique. It starts with a process of listening to the people in the community and allowing them to inform the project.
Joy has a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She has shown in several galleries between Minneapolis and Chicago. She has been a teaching artist for several nonprofit organizations over the last decade including: Hope Community, Intermedia Arts, Articulture and Learning Dreams through the University of Minnesota. Joy has helped create many murals around the city of Minneapolis working with groups of youth and adults. She has also created many individually. She was the Exterior Walls Curator at Intermedia Arts helping to engage several local muralists to explore their practice on a large scale.
During this program, participants will learn the art of aerosol painting. They will gain skills in can control and other tips and tricks to make this kind of painting work for them. After developing skills and creating their own style participants will work together to create a large scale mural based on a theme of their choosing. Mural residencies have a minimum of 15 sessions per group/class.
Murals: Smaller to Medium Scale Group Paint
Participants will work together to discuss a theme, create a group sketch and complete a community mural based on their design. Participants will learn color theory, brush painting skills, and learn how to work as a team to complete their goals. Mural residencies have a minimum of 15 sessions per group/class.
In this workshop participants will learn the art of collage as individuals working on their own style, learning how to combine mixed media, make patterns and textures and images work together to tell their stories. We will explore how communities have used these methods in other mediums and through history to come together to create quilts, tapestries, and artwork together. Participants will use this knowledge and apply it to their group project to complete a collaborative project of their choice.
Story House Project
Individuals will design a sculptural story telling structure, where each room represents part of a story. This interactive sculpture can be made from mixed media with an emphasis on the use of recycled materials. Each participant will learn about mixed media sculpture, the fundamentals of storytelling, and complete their own story house.
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