Melbourne artist Kaff-eine and her cheeseagle team are creating an onsite art installation as much-needed shelter with two slum communities in Manila, Philippines. A crowdfunding campaign to support the Happyland project launches with a group exhibition of leading street artists on 1 April.
Kaff-eine, whose artwork is found on the street, in private homes and in galleries, is reuniting with the Baseco and Happyland dumpsite communities and working with an international team to create ‘art tarpaulins’, which feature portraits of community personalities, and which will be used as much-needed shelter.
‘The collaborators who worked with me for my last project, Phoenix, made it clear that suitable housing is really important to them. I have so much admiration for the colourful, proud and resilient personalities in the communities; why not combine both?’, says Kaff-eine.
Thousands of residents in Manila’s Happyland and Baseco communities have inadequate housing made from scavenged materials, and are constantly battling frequent flooding, typhoons and fires. Families of five or more are crowded into shanties in crumbling warehouses amongst garbage, and along the low-lying seafront and seawall .
‘You see old, threadbare ex-advertising tarpaulins (tarps) used for walls, roofs, or tents everywhere, but they are rarely in any condition to protect the families who live under them. New tarps are practical for the climate, weather and mobility, yet I haven’t seen any new tarps used in the slums, and I certainly haven’t seen any tarps with images that reflect the communities’ quirky and diverse characters’, says Kaff-eine. ‘Combining new tarps with my portraits of local personalities will provide shelter, and also a large open-air exhibition spotlighting and celebrating these unique communities’.
The Happyland project has worked with 10 community personalities whose portraits Kaff-eine will paint. If enough funds are raised, these portraits will be printed onto large tarpaulins in Manila, where Kaff-eine and team will work with residents to install them before the June storm season. The process will be professionally photographed and filmed. ‘We’d like to gift at least 30 art tarps to whoever the communities think need them the most. They can be used as standalone shelter, or could reinforce existing residences; we estimate 30 art tarps could shelter at least 120 residents, and would make a fantastic art/shelter installation’ says Kaff-eine.
A crowdfunding campaign will kick off with a group exhibition featuring leading street artists on 1 April 2016 at 25 Keele Street, Collingwood, Melbourne. Free entry. The exhibition will be open 2 – 3 April from 10AM – 5PM.
‘It’s an ambitious project in a complex environment, for a great cause; I know I can’t do this on my own, and I’d really love the help of my friends, followers and other good folks. There are two ways we’re inviting people to get behind the Happyland project: tax-deductible art tarp sponsorships through the Australian Cultural Fund, and great rewards for a pledge through a Pozible campaign,’ explains Kaff-eine.
Pozible rewards, all generously donated to the Happyland project, include artworks by artists Adnate, Rone, Miso, Swoon, Vexta, Lister, Ghostpatrol, Lucy Lucy, E.L.K, Makatron, HaHa, Will Coles, Buff Diss, Merda, Penny Byrne, Kaff-eine and more. An eclectic array of non-art rewards will also be offered, including a snow-machine session; Lido cinema vouchers; dining at Rice Queen, Chin Chin, Hawker Hall and Vegie Bar; Crumpler bags; custom leatherwork; street art tours; custom portraits and murals; tattoo, massage and personal training sessions; and for the extra adventurous, an opportunity to go trampolining with goats.