Kailua’s Mural To Spread Peace Far
The students of St. Anthony School have just painted a mural with a peaceful message that could reach all the way to Japan. Thanks to a partnership with Pali Lions Club and Lions Club of Nagasaki, the school is now a participant in the international Kids’ Guernica project.
Inspired by Pablo Picasso’s famous Guernica mural, painted in 1937 after the bombing of the village Guernica in Spain during the Spanish Civil War, Kids’ Guernica strives to echo the artist’s protest against war. Art Japan Network founded the project in 1995, and hundreds of murals, from as far as Nepal to Greece, have been painted since.
“We want to inspire people throughout the world to be peacemakers,” explained Cecelia Izuo, a St. Anthony School teacher and Pali Lion who brought the project to the Kailua school. While attending a Lions convention in Toronto, Canada, she met a friend from the Nagasaki club who told her about Kids’ Guernica.
She believes the timing of this mural is significant.
“The way the world is right now, it’s devastating that people are getting killed because of their religious beliefs,” she said. “We want to promote peace throughout the world, and we feel that this is how God expects us to live: to love the differences in other people, to recognize that we’re not all the same.”
St. Anthony School set to work on its 11-by-25-foot mural Feb. 19, with every student in the school taking a turn at painting. Pali Lions and guests from Lions Club of Nagasaki and Kids’ Guernica supervised and assisted the process.
The mural design was a collaborative effort by the student body, who all submitted ideas. Prominent features include a plumeria lei border, Makapu‘u Lighthouse, the Ko‘olau Range, a hula dancer, a whale leaping out of the ocean, and the word “Aloha.”
But the art won’t be a permanent campus fixture. Kids’ Guernica’s murals are designed to move, just as Picasso’s original was shown at the 1937 Paris International Exhibition before touring Europe.
Izuo is hopeful the mural can be on display at the Lions Club International Convention (in June in Honolulu), and that it might even travel to Nagasaki to recognize the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombing that ended World War II.
For more information, visit kids-guernica.blogspot.com.