ST.PETE-We are lucky to say that the bay area has come a long way when regarding art and visual culture. We have many wonderful locally based institutions that make Tampa and its surrounding areas, very unique. While the latter makes us hopeful about the state of art and culture in our city, the past few years have shown extreme deterioration in public school’s art education programs. Art classes are simply not cutting it as the FCAT is overriding all, if not most, open slots for electives and extracurriculars.
Upon her return to Tampa Bay, local artist and art educator Carrie Boucher saw a disconnect between how the community prided itself on its status as an arts destination, and how our students’ exposure to the arts was ultimately lacking substance.
“Art, music, theater, dance – their importance can’t be quantified, they’re just a part of who we are as humans, they allow us to share our experience, but we have to teach the value of the arts if we want them to continue to be appreciated and supported.”
Compelled to make a difference, Boucher envisioned the NOMADstudio (Neighborhood-Oriented Mobile Art & Design Studio), a project that would potentially be a large Arlington Transit bus transformed into a mobile art classroom.
Boucher says that by being part of the NOMAD art bus, residents would be provided with an alternative art education; whomever participates will not only be attending an art class, but they will also be learning how to speak and think about art whilst becoming familiar with local artists. The bus will also serve as an even space, and a reliable resource of quality art supplies.
The project is not completely finished yet. They are still working towards generating the sufficient funds which will support the necessary renovations the bus needs in order to be fully functional.
For now, the NOMAD Art Bus project has been approved by KIND to compete for their November KIND Projects prize, a competition that awards $10,000 in funding to the project that gets the most votes on their website (projects.kindsnacks.com). Voting opened November 10th and will be closing on November 30th. With your help, this funding would allow Boucher to complete the remaining repairs and renovations for the vehicle, and buy the necessary art supplies to completely outfit the NOMADbus.
If you would like to vote for this project go to projects.kindsnacks.com and look for the NOMAD Art Bus project.
For more information on the NOMAD Bus you can contact Carrie Boucher at firstname.lastname@example.org