Flying Art is an opportunity for youth to share their artwork and to compare their lifestyles with their peers in other countries. An international exchange of art among youth. Enhancing Education and Encouraging Dialogue


Since 2002
children's artwork
has traveled to

Costa Rica
United States.


Flying Art is simple to participate with only a few simple steps. All that is needed is a reliable way to communicate and an adult who is interested in being the contact person for an exchange:

Step 1: Choosing Artists

Choose 10-30 youth, ages 8-17, who are enthusiastic about creating art and who are curious about the way of life in other cultures. This could be a specific art, English, or social sciences class, a particular grade, or a community youth group.

Step 2: Share with Us

Tell Flying Art some of the interests and values of the youth and their community. It is through this process that the Flying Art messenger will gather the interests and experiences of your artists to offer an honest reflection when sending the artwork to another country.

Step 3: Young Artists Create

Choose - with the artists - an art project that best exemplifies the youth and their culture and can be made from materials that are readily available. Anything from storytelling to ceramics is possible, with the understanding that this artwork will be traveling around the world. It must be durable, transportable and light.

In past exchanges, young artists from Antigua painted scenes of beaches and sailboats, while teens in the United States melted wax and dyed fabric to create their own batik quilt.

Step 4: Conversations on Culture

For three days a Flying Art messenger will meet with the youth to facilitate the exchange; ideally for about two hours each day. The amount of time invested is dependent upon location and scheduling logistics and how deeply the group wishes to engage in the exchange.

During these sessions, the Flying Art director will lead the youth to reflect on ideas of identity:

  • How do you describe yourself first and foremost?
  • What do you value most in your community?
  • How did these perceptions of identity evolve in your culture?

The adult leader can be very helpful during these discussions and is encouraged to participate.

Step 5: Students Respond

Putting these conversations into context, we will view and discuss the artwork created by the other youth involved in the exchange. We can take time to do research on the country they live in and discuss the perceptions we have about your own country. Then, each young artist will write a letter in response, reflecting on the artwork and what it reveals about the artists and their culture.

The following topics are meant as inspiration as the youth write their letters of response:

  • Describe the artwork that you have received.
  • What does it reveal about the artist or the artist’s home?
  • Can you compare it to any artwork that you have created?
  • What would you like to learn about the artists that you cannot determine from their art?

Step 6: The Art Flies

Following the messenger's visit with your youth, she will deliver their artwork to young artists abroad, either by mail or in person. Following a similar residency in their country, you can expect to receive letters of response, which will be delivered by mail or in person, depending on the specific itinerary that we develop.

Step 7: What's Next?

Although this will complete this Flying Art exchange, participants are encouraged to continue developing the connection formed by sending letters, emails and more artwork! Together we can continue sharing art and ideas to nurture lasting relationships.