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#3002: Haitian art brings joy to schools (fwd)
Published Sunday, March 26, 2000, in the Miami Herald
Haitian art brings joy to schools
Fund-raiser benefits tutors for students BY AJOWA NZINGA IFATEYO
Under the night sky Saturday, the past and the future -- the old and
the new -- forged historic links in the sunken courtyard of the
renovated Miami Edison Middle School. The occasion was the Where Art is
Joy/Haitian Art Auction, the second annual fund-raiser to help pay
outstanding Edison High School students to tutor their middle school
peers who are at risk of failure. The auction was organized by the
Edison Linkage Foundation, graduates of Edison High School who support
the students and staff at both Edison Middle and Senior High schools.
Bold and colorful Haitian paintings, sculptured platters and
other artifacts lined the courtyard and halls as about 250 guests --
many of them school alumni -- mingled, studied the art and placed their
bids while the 15-member Miami Edison Senior Jazz Ensemble made its
debut. Bids ranged from $50 to $500. ``It's a masterpiece,'' said Carey
Guerra, a ceramic artist from New York, as she stood before a painting
by artist Tiga. ``It seems to glow.'' Tiga, who donated the painting,
came from Haiti for the auction, as did artist Jean-Claude Legagneur,
who traveled from his studio in Boca Raton.
There to buy art and support the event were alumni such as U.S. Rep.
Clay Shaw, R-Fort Lauderdale, and his wife, Emilie; Adele Khoury Graham,
wife of Sen. Bob Graham and foundation co-chairwoman; and landscape
artist Jackie Brice and her husband, Herman, who drove down from Jupiter
for the auction and to see the school for the first time since it has
been renovated. ``The renovations are incredible,'' said Shaw, who also
had not previously seen the work that won the 1998 national award for
outstanding historic renovation. Some paintings could be purchased
before the auction. Local businessman Walter Revell walked out with a
painting in each hand. Revell said he loved the colors and ``great
scenes.'' They will be added to his game room in the Keys. ``It's a
great event for a wonderful cause,'' he said.
When it was time for the auction, Sen. Graham, who joked that his only
previous experience with auctions was with cows, said that last year's
event raised $25,000. ``Our goal tonight is to double what we did at the
previous auction,'' he said. ``Does everyone understand the implication
of that?'' During the auction for the first item, he said, ``Ah . . .
'' when bids stopped at $230. The students, some of them beneficiaries
of the fund-raiser, thought it was a good idea for other reasons as
well. ``This is a great event because all the wonderful things it shows
about the past and also teaching the students about art,'' said Lamarre
Manoach, 13, a middle school student. ``One day later in life, they may
try to be an artist.'' The foundation also provides scholarships to
Miami-Dade Community College.