SEGD Film Focus: The Barefoot Artist

SEGD Film Focus
The Barefoot Artist (2014)
Glenn Holsten and Daniel Traub (co-directors)
Thursday, November 19, 2020
5:30 – 8:30 pm, Eastern
How can art and design help heal shattered communities? Artist and activist Lily Yeh presents several compelling strategies in the 2014 film The Barefoot Artist. Yeh travels from North Philadelphia to Rugerero, Rwanda, to Cité Soleil, Haiti, working with local residents to connect to one another and rebuild their lives—all through artistic means.
Yeh’s mission is to collaborate with community residents, often traumatized by poverty and violence, to design and create public spaces and public works of art that give pride of place in their neighborhoods. Her medium of choice is mosaic, a metaphor for piecing broken communities—and broken lives—back together in beautiful and authentic ways.
The film’s co-directors, Glenn Holsten and Daniel Traub, tell two stories. The first covers Yeh’s journeys around the world as she helps communities create their collective visions through artistic endeavors. The second focuses on Yeh’s own personal journey as she tries to make amends for her father’s past wrongdoings in her homeland of China.
After watching The Barefoot Artist, join other SEGD members to discuss the film with key figures from the film who will be taking questions. Hope to see you—virtually—on Thursday, November 19.

Alan Jacobson is the President of Exit Design in Philadelphia.
Alan Jacobson
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