Art from International Paint Pals Shows How Children Worldwide Express Freedom and Peace
On Sunday, September 15, Lenbrook, Atlanta’s premier Life Plan Community, hosted the Children’s Art Festival at Lenbrook. Lenbrook’s residents and associates, their children and grandchildren, as well as guests from nearby Canterbury Court and Renaissance of Atlanta, plus families in the adjacent Ridgedale Park neighborhood were all invited.
The theme for the event was “Open Doors to Friendship and Peace” and included a very special art exhibition, hands-on art stations where art teachers and supplies helped participants create their own pieces of art, refreshments, and uplifting music by very talented young musicians - including a 7-year old prodigy pianist and a teenaged brother and sister duo on the cello and violin.
The art for the unique exhibition was provided by the nonprofit organization “International Paint Pals” and has previously been shown worldwide. For me and the organizing committee, it was an honor to work closely with so many influencers in our community as well as with Lenbrook resident Linden Longino to realize this event.
Mr. Longino is the founder and managing partner of International Paint Pals and he shared his passion and vision for IPP as follows: “Children everywhere have natural seeds of tolerance and peace in their minds and hearts. Our goal is to nourish those seeds. One of the ways to do that is through art. I am just a catalyst for this process; good people all over the world do the real work.”
For the past 25 years IPP has involved over 200,000 kids from 117 countries in peace and human rights education programs. The children’s artistic expressions of these issues have already been exhibited at Olympic Games, United Nations conferences, and meetings of Nobel Peace Laureates.
As Mr. Longino explains: “A true, lasting peace movement must begin from within today’s children. A dream? Yes, but does anyone have a better idea? Has anything else worked? The core of our program is not about art and exhibitions. It is about educating children. Art is simply one messenger. This is the essence of International Paint Pals.”
The Committee for the Lenbrook’s Children’s Art Festival has been planning the inclusive event for the better part of a year, and we are proud to say that the stunning IPP art exhibit inspired a lot of our young guests to create their own visions of friendship and peace. This Festival again showed how valuable it is to be able to express your emotions in a creative way!
All participants received a personalized certificate along with a remembrance of our first Children’s Art Festival @ Lenbrook. We are excited to share that select pieces of the art shown, as well as works created during the event, will be displayed at The Carter Library and Museum next year.