WHAT IS WE DREW?
We support wonderful people with whatever they are doing, creating a collaboration of diverse talents & disciplines that enable people to bond, feel supported & work together. We use dance, all arts & design to improve bonds, skills and hopefully quality of life.
We Drew functions as a collaborative, so there is no hierarchy or leaders – just a person’s experience when needed.
WE DREW PROJECTS?
We are based in Latin America & London. We have worked on projects in Bahia, Brazil; Mendoza & Buenos Aires, Argentina; Berlin & London. With the funding of Drew’s portraiture artwork and crowdfunding we have danced, up-cycled, creatively tackled & splashed away at issues from increasing confidence in illiterate woman to tackling impulse control in violent children.
WE DREW FUNDING?
The portraiture sales of Drew Walker fund projects in Latin America.
Within We Drew, we support people, participate in their projects, and use arts to bond communities. We maintain a focus on mutual support & alternative & independent funding. We reduce costs by helping develop a project with what materials & skills are to hand on site, in turn making it more accessible and long term.
We Drew Philosophy
From the birds and the bees down to your knees, it’s all connected, we all exist from the ashes of the stars… So our philosophy is simple; everything works best when they are connected and loved. Friends, neighbours, communities, kids, sciences, theories, arts, the earth, the animals and everything imbetween, it’s all one giant ecosystem.
No matter how great or small, we don’t underestimate the power of a hug, growing a seed, or the importance of health or art. If it comes from the heart, We Drew love them and encourage them in what ever way we can.
By participating in sustainable people & projects we learn heuristically, applying it to our lives, with that perspicacity we cross pollinate our skills in mutual support. Whether it be dancing, gardening or roof tiling. Every person we meet has a world of experience we can learn from. Which is why it is a constant practice, continuous participation, and ongoing humbling learning curve of connections.
Autonomy creates Less Poverty.
We believe by working with nature we can create abundance as nature is free, and that with a sense of abundance people have a better chance at living a dignified life created by themselves – i.e autonomy – Utilising the rain, rivers, the soil, the plants, creatures, the sun, etc. these resources are abundant & free to if you know how to look after them. By supporting those creating abundance with consideration, we learn, and we consume with a conscious and protect nature to utilise her abundance. Creating abundance without draining environment but looking after it
Healing broken environments
A wise man once said you know the state of a society from it’s treatment of it’s environment. If the the plants, the puppies, kids and cows are sick, so is the society. We connect with people and endeavours that heal holistically, considering the health of the entire eco system. Small considerations that make all the difference, little actions in daily life that make a better whole. Like what you eat, how its grown, transported, prepared, what you wash the dishes with afterwards, what grows in your garden, how you treat the slugs, how you treat your four legged friend, or helping the old lady crossing the road. Every act of kindness can be a revolution of consideration.
Artful Skills Applied
Drawing From the Heart
Drew quite simply – Drew… There couldn’t be a more appropriately named individual. Drew draws everything – constantly, it’s like an OCD.
He started by drawing large portraits, from commissions to celebrities, galleries to Satchii. The usual… but one day, Mr. Kennedy, an elderly friend of Drew, asked him for a favor; to draw a portrait of a little girl who was in hospital awaiting a major operation. Drew drew her with all his heart out of thousands of hearts. Mr. Kennedy gave the drawing to her, & she adored it & gifted her mother with her smile, a poet once said;
“Every moment of a smile is ever more precious when you don’t know if it will be the last.”
And this story didn’t end there… the mother of another little girl in the bed opposite noticed the little girl’s spirit lift on seeing the image of herself, & requested Drew to draw one for her little one too, who was awaiting emergency Leukemia treatment. From then, Drew felt how a seemingly insignificant act of drawing someone can be a true act of love, to make a moment into magic in those little ones eyes seeing themselves as a thousand hearts. Drawing was never the same again, from the grumpy security guard to the prisoner of human rights, the pensive passenger to the bereaved street doggie needing some love – Drew Drew.
Dancing for Life
A day not danced, is a day un-lived. Evolutionary biologists & anthropologists proove that a huge part of our evolution as a species comes from our instinct to move to the rhythm. You see it in babies wobbling to the beat, they know, they may be wobbly, but they know. Without dance, we simply are not complete, and yet dancing is too often left to professionals or a drunken escapade, it’s not part of our education, so many of us have forgotten we are dancers, and once we have forgotten, it’s taken for-granted we can be dancers again, and how much we need it.
Drew and Chichi experienced this transition into dancers when they moved from England to Latin America, where dance is woven into the fabric of culture, in Argentina dance is taught free in cultural centers. Drew and Chichi learned Tango umung other dances, and were initiated into the world of social dance where Milongas are hosted daily and are part of life in Buenos Aires, it’s how you socialize, express, and live fully. Drew and Chi use philosophies drawn from what they have learnt of Tango in workshops that combine disciplines to bring people back to their dancers within and to eachother.
Music & Story Telling
Drew always sang, he says Cavsie, his disabled little sister was his singing couch, her forte being whale song. Music is the universal language, it transcends cultures, borders and even disabilities. It is also a powerful story teller, Drew started to compose music to the poems of others, bring sounds to the thoughts and feelings of others. He started with Chichi’s poems, then neighbors, travelers, hitchhikers, orphans in Zimbabwe, mad gardeners saving the world and so many more. He puts the composed music up on Bandcamp, where people can hear & download for free, or donate what they can to support.
In the town of Conde in Bahia, Brazil, the community showed us the devastating consequences of litter on the wildlife. Horses would eat rubbish & get sick; turtles would mistake plastic bags for jelly fish, eat them & eventually die. Though various groups organised rubbish collecting, the litter kept piling up.
Part of the technique was finding the route cause of the issue, which seemed to be that the kids were immune to noticing the rubbish as they had been raised with it everywhere. So first we figured out how to help the children actually see the litter & understand the damage it was causing in their community. We gave the litter a purpose: stray straws became intricately weaved bracelets & roses; plastic bags became rope; bottles, plant pots; & bottle caps, mosaics for a mural. We also used the theory of beauty to help explain the difference between order and disorder. Presenting them the pile of rubbish we asked if they found it beautiful.. They said no. We then started by taking out the bottle tops & sorting them by colour, tone & size until they became a rainbow. We then asked again if the kids found it beautiful & this time they said yes. They then had to figure out what it was that made the rubbish beautiful & repeat the process for themselves.
Tackling confidence issues in illiterate woman. Illiteracy affects every part of their lives, from taking the bus to knowing their rights. Most of these woman were prevented from receiving a free education & most were victims of domestic violence. They rarely had the chance to express themselves freely without fear of humiliation of some kind.
Creating a moment of expression where it was impossible to make a mistake. We choreographed a painting using a Jackson Pollock-esque splash technique & 2-layer colour-coordination (first layer, blues, purples & pinks; second, yellows & oranges). We created a canvas where all that the women & their kids had to do was splash & splatter to their heart’s content, without fear of making a mistake & feeling humiliated.
Every element of the activity was choreographed so that the women felt empowered to participate (and had no excuse to think they could not do it) – i.e, the coordination of colour combinations; the protective clothing we provided; the accessible subject that was chosen; the location; the paint consistency; and even the humour & cathartic nature of the physicality of flicking & splashing paint.
Although, generally speaking, kids are totally joyous, curious, energetic & beautifully cooperative, occasionally we come across aggressive or controlling behaviours & sometimes, kids are so shy they won’t participate. Also, when it is a particularly large group of kids, it can be a challenge to capture the group’s collective imagination.
We use various techniques to combat the challenges of working with groups of kids. Most importantly PLAY.. They play, we play, everybody plays. This is how we build friendships & mutually inspire to create something.
- Alpha-askew theory: We encourage kids to work in mixed aged teams to paint & help each other, creating opportunities for kids to bond & practise teamwork, leadership & caregiving. More Info.
- Respecting kids’ space to work on their own.
- Choreographing projects where it is impossible to make a mistake.
- We didactically teach them respectful communication by showing them how to train doggies to do tricks using positive reinforcement techniques. More Info.
- Encourage kids of their capabilities by teaching them effective techniques that dramatically raise the standard of their drawing:
- Using ‘Beauty Theory’, repetition, order, perspective, symmetry, etc.
- Teaching about nature’s laws & their connections, such as: fractals in rivers, mountains, trees & broccoli. By learning these laws they can draw trees & rivers wonderfully.
The Co-founder of WeDrew, she is an industrial designer & primatologist that specializes is finding ways that art & design can have a positive impact. From managing galleries to designing brands, Chichi has had over 15 years experience working within the arts. Chichi and Drew collaborate on social projects in Latin America.
Drew Walker is a linguist & portraiture artist who has exhibited all over the world, including at The Saatchi Gallery in London; and has been commissioned by Mumford & Sons and Kesha. His style of portraiture is playfully fractal, making doodles within doodles to create the face he is portraying.