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Whitney Sparks' Fundraiser:

Sparks over Switzerland

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BENEFITING:

Whitney Sparks

THE STORY:

This has been a HUGE year for me: I went to my first artists' residency at the amazing Vermont Studio Center. I flew around the world to visit Thailand, Cambodia, and Laos. I got two jobs in Bangkok. ... and I applied and have been accepted to Zürcher Hochschule der Künste (ZHdK) aka Zurich University of the Arts in Switzerland!!!!!!!!!!

I don't think I could possibly be more thrilled! I am so fortunate to have such a wonderful support network of family and friends, all of who have made this dream come true possible. What makes this a dream? I will...

earn my Master of Fine Arts degree in the practice of fine art
launch my artistic career
live and work in Zurich, in the birthplace of DadA and one of the most historically important locations for collage art in the world
experiment, create, and collaborate on the biggest scale I ever have, in space, spirit, and time!
share ideas and build projects with art peers, professionals, and professors in Switzerland, Germany, Austria and Europe at large

Add to that that this is one of the most affordable Masters' degrees I have ever heard of: the entire two year program will cost less than $4,000 in tuition! (that is less than community college in the states!!)

That said, Zurich as a city is comparable to San Francisco, New York, or London in terms of expense, which is to say it can be fairly pricey to live there (especially without a work permit!). I have launched this Kickstarter project in order to raise money for my additional grad-school living costs, including primarily:

food to eat
room to sleep
public transportation
art supplies.

From my application to Zürcher Hochschule der Künste:

"As I write now, I sit under stars listening to waves lap the tide in on an island in Thailand. To taste such extreme liberty I know is a blessing; I am descended from people for whom the night sky was once forbidden, because its heavenly lights mapped the way to freedom. And what is freedom? I wonder as Elizabeth Eckford’s dignified yet fragile countenance, collared in her crisp, porcelain-white dress, strides up to me, past the insensate hatred pursuing her. I feel indignant tears buried, watering her heart, whose expressions are shielded behind dark sunglasses. Again and again, I am called to use the powerful photographs of her girlhood fame as the icon of United States’ school integration in Little Rock, Arkansas, 1950. Themes in my grandmother’s bulletin from Catholic mass, of piety, vanity, and chastity, become the truths I see: desire, shame, greed, confusion. While practicing yoga in India and Sri Lanka, Hinduism’s pantheon of super-heroic, super-anatomical deities inspired me to give magical bodies to subtle emotions. Incising and combining, I form guardian fairies and fanciful beasts that oversee growth, catastrophe, or revolution within collaged dreamscapes. O, the paper canvas can act as enchanted threshold! Into which one, with her imagination, could leap, then return to our world with greater awareness of human super-nature!”

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