2021 Kwanzaa Workshop Series
Interactive Kwanzaa Visual Storytelling
Facilitated by Kat Robertson, Visual and Performing Artist, Teacher, and Published Poet/Writer
Saturday, December 18, 2021 | 11:00 am - 1pm
Facilitator Kat Robertson, visual and performing artist, teacher, published poet and writer, will engage participants in an interactive Kwanzaa Visual Story Telling experience. She will introduce the Nguzo Saba (the Swahili name for the 7 Principles of Kwanzaa) and the week-long lighting of the candles that represent the 7 Principles. Using construction paper, paints, color markers and fabrics, participants in this storytelling process will select and create the Swahili principle named candle of their choice. Then they will decorate the other side of their drawing with a word or phrase that exemplifies what the principle means to them. The collective candles will be ceremoniously “lit” as all the words/phrases are woven together to create the fabric of the Kwanzaa story. This distinctive event will stimulate the imagination and encourage creativity while fostering awareness and unity.
This workshop will be limited occupancy so to secure your seat you must register through the Eventbrite link below.
Seats are limited and we ask that if you do register that you please arrive on time for the workshop so that the space can be utilized.
Masks will be Required!
This workshop will take place on the second floor of our Upbeat Village Terracotta Gallery. This space has stair access only.
Participant Availability up to 10 Participants between the ages of 6 – up
Just bring your creativity! All materials, tables & chairs will be supplied.
Handmade Kwanzaa Cards and poetry books will also be available to purchase after the workshop!
Storytelling Traditions in Africa
Storytelling is a universal art that exists in every culture to pass on cultural traditions, knowledge, history, and experiences from one generation to the next. Its presence in African culture goes back to ancient times and also plays a role in passing on codes of behavior and maintaining order in the community. This is accomplished by the gift of the storyteller who entertains, inspires, and engages their audience while educating them. In African story telling tradition, the storyteller does not merely share a story with their audience, they share an experience with them, making creative use of their vocal range, facial expressions, gestures, instrumentation, etc. The story may include songs, chants poems, prayers, etc. and the audience may be invited to chime in. Storytellers in West Africa are known as a Griots (pronounced “gree·ows”). The role of the Griot is traditionally a hereditary role passed from one generation to the next. Their role as the primary storyteller of their people was once also complimented with the role of serving as advisers to the king.
Meet our Facilitator!
Kat L. Robertson
Visual & Performing Artist | Teacher | Published Poet and Writer
Kat L. Robertson is a visual and performance artist as well as a published poet and writer with a broad range of experience in the artistic and communicative fields of theatre, film, and fashion.
Awarded a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Community and Educational Theatre from Emerson College in Boston, MA. Ms. Robertson spent many years devoted to various theatre outreach programs for at-risk youth living in Boston, Philadelphia, Southern New Jersey, and NYC. She created staged performances for children from age 7 through 18 for several Theatre Arts in-school and after-school programs. As an actor Robertson was in SAG/AFTRA with professional experience in stage and film. She is also in Local 798 as a professional make-up artist and teaches private make-up application workshops.
With over 20 years of communicative skills Robertson uses fine art, theatre art, make-up artistry, and visual poetry as her expressions of choice. Her art constantly redefines who she is. Every day she listens for her unique voice to enjoy the change in pitch, timbre, or volume. Robertson is both a work-in-progress and a progressive work. She creates from painting with watercolors and writing poetry to playing the Terceiro Surdo Samba drum, singing, performance art and SFX make-up. Robertson is the seer as much as she who is seen; her existence is as much inspired as it is created. This begins the yin and yang of Kat L Robertson and who she is before God and the world.
See links below to learn more about Kat L. Robertson and check out her creations: