FS23: Making Spaces Conference
This year’s conference looked at how the work of a maker can impact the spaces we inhabit: our homes, our communities.
YAYA empowers creative young people through visual arts education combined with entrepreneurial and life skills training, equipping them with the skills they need to thrive as leaders. Our programs train youth to think creatively, solve problems, manage complex projects, and give back to their community. Since 1988, YAYA has served as an incubator for young talent, giving youth the freedom, opportunities, and resources to discover their passions and artistic voices.
Local Resident Fellow:
This year we are lucky to be working with Rontherin Ratliff, a mixed media sculptor based in New Orleans. His work focuses on ideas of balance and the human condition. He blends functionality, aesthetic, context, and associations to address subjects of loneliness, loss, homesickness, memory, and the burdens we carry. For Ratliff, it’s steps of a journey in search of the equilibrium existing or nonexistent amidst life and art. Ratliff examines the metaphor of the body as a house where the mind dwells. Feeling at home or in harmony within including home as one’s origin or domestic place. The work questions the sociocultural constructed concepts of self. With it, he contemplates reservations regarding home as a safe-haven where one experiences positive qualities such as security and comfort. Using architectural materials and domestic objects, his work explores the notion of internal versus external balance.
Beginning in 2023, we will partner with YAYA, an organization serving New Orleans area children and youth through educational experiences and entrepreneurship opportunities in the arts. YAYA’s programs are designed to nurture the creative talents of students in ways that also strengthen their academic success, life skills, and professional preparedness, turning their creative talents into career pathways.
YAYA Glass Ceramics 2
YAYA Community Arts
YAYA Glass Demo 1
In this round of Craft for a Greater Good, we anticipate teaching furniture making skills to participants. YAYA’s original program involved working with young people to paint “storytelling chairs.” Over the last thirty-two years, YAYA has expanded their facilities, mediums, and reach. Our partnership with YAYA will allow them to return to their roots, the “storytelling chair;” only this time — three decades later — the participants will go beyond surface design and learn to build chairs of their own design, deepening their skills and enriching the experience.
YAYA rondell student chattanooga
YAYA students at work
YAYA Family Arts Clay Ornaments
YAYA Mixed Media
YAYA Family Arts Easter Egg Hunt
YAYA Field Trip w Carlos Zervigon
Press Release for Funding Award!
The Furniture Society is pleased to announce renewed support from the John & Robyn Horn Foundation and the Sara Little Turnbull Foundation for our community-based initiative, Craft For a Greater Good.
With the 2021 – 2022 funding the Sara Little Turnbull and the John & Robyn Horn Foundations have so generously provided, CGG has been able to grow from a modest pilot program into a robust, nationally recognized program that is making a quantitative difference, even inspiring a college course as well as national volunteer participation.
In addition to the continued, generous support from these foundations, we are honored to have been recognized by the Maxwell Hanrahan Foundation in support of our efforts as we look to the future and our next project in New Orleans. We are
These multi-year grants are mission-critical to the continuation of CGG in allowing us to set a programmatic foundation in place to sustain and continue building the program.
The Furniture society is grateful to our funders for recognizing the critical and impactful nature of this program and we look forward to beginning our efforts, in earnest, in a new city over the course of the next year.