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Since 1996 Arts For Oakland Kids has been bringing the arts back to school.
Oakland public schools have had ZERO public money for arts education since 1995. Over the last 22 years the non-profit organization has reached 20,000 kids through Arts For Oakland Kids funded programs. Students who may not otherwise have the opportunity to experience the arts in school are the driving force behind AOK. We award grants for hands-on, arts education programs in underserved Oakland schools. As budget cuts continue in our school districts, contributions to this organization are meaningful and provide necessary arts funding where it's needed!
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STOMPER IN THE TOWN
In the studio and behind the scenes...
Since 2016 I've been volunteering my time as an artist and board member of Arts For Oakland Kids (AOK.) I grew up in Santa Rosa, California, but I spent a huge chunk of my childhood in Oakland. I understand first hand how important art is to life, and what a difference it can make for a child to have early access to the arts as a jumpstart to their future. Funding to our Bay Area public schools continues to be cut left and right, and every year there is more bad news for our teachers and arts educators. AOK is a meaningful cause I believe in and I do what I can to support their efforts to grow in our community and provide more access to the arts where it's needed the most. Kids need art for happy, healthy and strong futures!
From the very beginning, my vision for the Stomper project was to create a colorful, memorable community art piece involving as many children as I could reach within Oakland in the time allowed. The best way to do this was to use their hands as a blueprint for the sculpture's own face and hands. I wanted Stomper's skin to represent the kids because they are the entire reason behind our mission at AOK! With the help of my fellow board members, the teachers and staff at Achieve Academy in Fruitvale, and many of my friends and neighbors - I was able to collect over 300 handprints from children ranging in age between 6 months old to 16 years!
It being the 50th Anniversary of the Oakland A's it was only appropriate that Stomper wears a suit and a bowtie. I wanted the illustrative design of his suit to reflect a child-like nature, and our true mission within Arts For Oakland Kids. Whimsical creative elements were included to highlight aspects of music, theater, and the arts while celebrating the true spirit of baseball season!
Thank you for supporting Stomper in the Town! It is an absolute honor to be included in this community arts project on behalf of Arts For Oakland Kids and the Oakland Athletics. Congratulations to all the artists involved with this project!
If you want to learn more about this incredible grassroots non-profit organization that is celebrating over two decades of bringing arts funding to our underserved Oakland schools please visit the link below to get involved!
Follow me on Instagram @kellyautumn for the latest updates on my work!
Remember to tag us! #artsforoaklandkids #kellyautumnart
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