On June 23rd, we unveiled the “Mur de la liberte” (Freedom Wall) at Ambes Middle School. It was the result of a project that has been involving the city council, teachers and students for the past few months.

A-MO ambès street art enfants école animal art

After very fulfilling workshops with the 4 classes of 7 to 9 years old kids, during which I shared my techniques with the pupils, I came back for the climax of this series of artistic projects: painting a wall.

As the students had been implicated from the very beginning, the teachers really wanted them to be involved in picking subjects that would talk to them. Nothing easier than that: at this age you have a lot of ideas, believe me! So, the problem wasn’t the lack of creativity, but to pick from this pool of ideas. So, the four teachers and I decided to review them together, in order to pick between “flying multicolored buses”, rainbows, unicorns, all kind of animals and enchanting landscapes, which were the most recurrent ideas to illustrate freedom.

All ideas painted on this wall are the result of these kids imagination. But beware: their participation did not stop there. After learning my different techniques to paint, they applied them on their OWN wall.

A-MO ambès street art enfants école animal art

So they painted the grass using paintags (tags layering) then used stencils to add insects all over the wall. They worked in a good spirited atmosphere and with sheer will to do a good job. I was very touched by the amount of interest and work they provided during this project.

Painting this big wall (4X9m) took me about a week, but time flies by when you are having fun, and at each bell, a swarm of little spectators would surround my spot and talk to me until the very last second of their break. These curious kids would follow me every day without fail at each break until the end of their day. We had lots of talks and exchanges went both ways, it was an amazing time.

I had such a great time with all of them and their teachers, but that wasn’t all: I had the honor of becoming the main subject of a song that the kids sung for me at the wall’s unveiling. You can find this song in the video “le Mur de la Liberte “on the following link:  Ambès FB page.

A-MO ambès street art enfants école animal art

I was also very blessed to see that about a hundred people came to the unveiling ceremony, including the city council team, teachers, pupils and their parents, allowing to end this incredible project on an amazing note.

My warm thanks go to Sandrine, Julien, Mathieu and Xavier, the four teachers that initiated this project, for their motivation, interest and implication. It was a treat to share these few months with them. A big thanks to the association “Pole Magnetic” for being the link between all the players and coordinate the this adventure. Thank you to Ambes’ city council for approving this project. And finally, a big thanks to all the kids that bring so much to me through the many hours spend together. I hope they had as much fun as I had with them.

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