This month I have been teaching an after school art class in two schools as part of a grant for the Confluence Project. " At seven points along the Columbia River Basin, an unprecedented endeavor continues to unfold. Here, where rivers meet and indigenous people once gathered, the Confluence Project explores the intersection of environment, cultures and a regional history that reaches back many hundreds of years." I am working with area children to create art while learning about Celilo Falls which was once a gathering place for many native american tribes to fish. Celilo Falls was flooded over when The Dalles Dam was completed in 1957, silencing and erasing the falls.
The children and I have learned about the importance of fishing at Celilo Falls to many native american tribes and have watched videos and seen pictures of what the Falls looked like before and after the river was flooded.
During the four weeks of this class, the students are creating fish. They started by looking at pictures fish that we find in the Columbia River from brochures donated by the Bonneville Dam. The students learned about layering tissue paper to create different colors and created fish using reclaimed file folders and colored tissue paper, covered with Mod Podge.
The students are now working on abstract fish made from recycled sweaters. They are learning how to work with recycled fabrics and hand sew. I will post pictures once the projects are finsihed.