“Jóvenes que suman”: Artistic Campus and Intercultural Festival

“Young people who add up… who welcome, who create, who inspire, who care.” This was the motto of the XVII Intercultural Festival of Tiempo Joven program, and also the idea under which we have worked in this 3rd edition of our Artistic Campus.

If you are wondering where this long title came from, let us explain: there was a growing concern among the participants of Tiempo Joven about the behaviors that some young people were having with respect to Covid, as well as the generalized and prejudiced image that the media and some adults were forming about youth. These young tomilleros wanted to show that not all young people are like this, and that there are many young people doing well and engaging in positive and productive actions.

And from there began the organization of the Festival, carried out by the participants themselves, which is a fantastic opportunity for the boys and girls to develop their personal and group identity more fully, since it is a window to communicate with the outside world, to express who they are, what matters to them, what they think and feel, how they relate… and, of course, to share what they have worked on during the course. Here is a link to a short “trailer” of the event:

And from there we moved on to the III Artistic Summer Campus, continuing in this line, which still had a lot to explore. In these three weeks we have been accompanied by the book “The Little Prince”, developing as follows:

  • “It was the time you spent with your rose that made it so important.” This first week we were working through plastic arts, starting from an idea that we sketched at the end of the course with the Voices Council: the metaphor of a rose bush, which represents their vital process during adolescence and their passage through the program. This week’s highlight was the deepening of the concept and the realization of sketches, painting the walls of the shop, each with their own style and capabilities, because not all roses are the same.

  • “He was just a fox like a hundred thousand others. But I made him my friend, and now he is unique in the world.” This week we have approached it through the musicwith a song from the musical “Dear Evan Hansen”, which we have adapted to Spanish and to our own experiences of isolation and unwanted loneliness. Showing a way to stand up, through the visibility of the problem and the deep encounter with others. As part of this work process we went to see the musical “In the Heights” which we highly recommend, as it addresses issues such as immigration and belonging to a community, wrapped in vibrant music and choreography.

  • “Only with the heart can one see well; what is essential is invisible to the eyes.” This past week has been developed around to art dramaticWe started with the song “You will be found”, generating a theatrical scene that would allow us to understand the message of our song, and what it means to this group of young people, in order to launch it to the community. At the same time, Sharon, one of the most veteran participants, promoted the first plastic art exhibition in the Tiempo Joven space, with the collaboration of her peers. The exhibition “Sonder” speaks of the contrasts between appearances and essence, between judgments and bonds.

Thus, we closed the Artistic Campus with the display of the results of this creative process: the mural, the musical scene and the “Sonder” exhibition, which we shared with friends, family and other participants of Tiempo Joven who came to support their peers on this day of celebration of the successes achieved.