Save World of Art aims to provide programs for indigenous art enthusiasts and artists. We work with indigenous artists of all disciplines; dancers, weavers, painters, musicians, basket makers, sculptors, storytellers, and mask makers.
All facilitators employ approaches from an indigenous perspective. They foster cultural, professional, and art development. Members feel empowered, supported, and engaged in communities.
- Our indigenous art programs include but are not limited to the following:
- Support indigenous artists to meet their goals of earning money
- Develop programs that can introduce them to indigenous cultural leadership at the international level.
- Identify and promote projects and initiatives that can contribute to the culture, heritage, and arts sectors.
- These will work towards the empowerment and revitalization of the communities.
- Bring awareness, knowledge, and interest to the indigenous arts.
- Help people in the indigenous arts to realize their self-determination and empowerment.
- Facilitate the inclusion of indigenous arts within the bigger framework of the arts sector
The film below here explains much of how Save World Art came into existence. Taking advantage of performing in the wonderful arts complex in Singapore I was able to take a brief trip to Cambodia to see the magnificent temples at Angkor Wat. What I discovered overwhelmed me with its magnificence, not just one temple but 76 square miles of temples of which I was privileged to see only four. Imagine my amazement when driving back to the hotel from Bayon, another of the temples, I saw what was obviously a mobile theatre set up at the back of a rough stretch of grassland at the side of the road. It was midday. The actors were sitting on the ground preparing food. Accompanied by my interpreter, I slowly walked out to them. They offered me food and invited me to sit with them. we discovered later that they had never been on that road before, and I certainly hadn’t! Barriers were broken when I told them that we both did the same kind of work. They showed me how they lived, sleeping at night in their hammocks slung under their stage, performing to audiences sitting on the ground. As I was leaving, the Director went down on his knees in front of me with tears pouring down his face begging me for help. “We are starving,” he said, “We have traveled south from our home hoping to attract the tourists.” What I didn’t know then but gradually learned in the following months was that this was the last indigenous Opera company in Cambodia performing Bassac. The Director had survived the slaughter by the Khmer Rouge and was endeavoring to form a Company to again perform the ancient legends of the Ramayana as told in Bassac. Stories that form the heart of their mythology and religion. They were struggling. They had no home and were performing where they could.
My return from South East Asia was haunted by how I could help them. There were many hurdles, distance, language, finances. I was able to formulate what was, at first, a shaky form of support that has gradually evolved into what has become, Save World Art. We now work to not only work help them but many other artists struggling to preserve their artistic heritage. We are building a theatre and residence in North East Cambodia. The Opera Company has shelter and a place to perform and teach. I have returned many times. I have sat among audiences numbering in the thousands as they still also travel. Our work is not complete but we are proud of what we have achieved. That encounter has certainly changed my life and opened up a huge array of possibilities for many others. I am grateful for my life as an actress that has given me the skills to achieve this. ENJOY THE FILM.