HEAD WRAPS IN THE PARK festival 2017

Runway Boutique and A Map to You Creative Advocacy have officially announced the return of Head Wraps in the Park Festival, coming this September 30th with the anticipation of an even more successful event, and a new location at the Grand Park in Downtown Los Angeles. This event is expected to be the most celebrated natural hair and beauty event in Los Angeles. The highlight of the experience will be the people from all walks of life showcasing the beauty and art of their Goddess Wraps. As a global tradition ranging from South Asia to Africa, goddess head wrapping is an artform which bridges culture and displays true textile arts & craft, often carefully made within indigenous societies to share the stories and history of their communities.

As a wearable-art piece, Goddess Wraps has also found its way within mainstream society through fashion, worldwide. This wearable art’s global impact has inspired Runway Boutique and A Map to You Creative Advocacy to turn the cultural artform of goddess head wraps into an annual event. Last year, 'Head Wraps in the Park Festival', which was held in the Leimert Park area, brought people from across the country to celebrate this unique textile craft, with over 500 in attendance, filling the spaces with people wearing their amazing colorful goddess wraps creating an experience to never forget!

As an outdoor event, ‘Head Wraps in the Park’ extends itself as a platform to some of Los Angeles' most gifted artists, craftsmen, handmade vendors, food connoisseurs, and textile artists. Local residents are exposed to highly innovative art, culture, creative and diverse perspectives, and shop highly curated and uniquely handmade items. In addition, this years event will serve as a platform of advocacy for those who have the courage to live out their creative visions and dreams, as well as extending that courage into their livelihoods and sharing it with their local community members.

Our goal with ‘Head Wraps in the Park’ is to:

• Support up-and-coming artists, designers and creatives with their collective endeavors and project oriented goals.

• Actively advocate and provide a platform for artists and designers from under-represented communities to continue their craft while sustaining a viable income.

• Encourage art & design to be used as a powerful tool for innovation as well as social commentary.

• And to help make art, and quality handmade items more accessible to locally based community members.

All the items sold at ‘Head Wraps in the Park’ are either handmade or repurposed and all ethically sourced and created. There is only one fee for the artist-vendors during the event, which will be the charge for the booths only. The event itself is FREE for all those who attend, and the artists keep all of their profits & revenue.

Scheduled Highlights:

~ Photography Exhibit

~ Live Painting

~ Handmade Vendors, Spotlighting Craftsmenship

~ Mehndi Art

~ Live Performance

~ Live DJ

~ Art Installations Detailing the History of Head Wraps

~ Children's Activity Area & Water Park

~ Natural Hair Artists Services

~ Panel Speaker Series on Natural Hair & Beauty

~ And so much more to be announced!

Be sure to join us this September 30th, 2017, 11am to 6pm at the Grand Park: 200 N. Grand Ave, Los Angeles; CA, 90012!!!

Founder - Michelle Johnson (Amtu): Founder Michelle Johnson (Amtu): As a graduate of UCLA, Michelle studied International Relations (Political Science) as well as Film Production and received her Masters in Education from Pepperdine University. As a doctoral candidate in 2013, just before taking a leave of absence from her graduate studies, she moved to South Asia and designed a youth outreach program for the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), where contemporary art was used as a powerful tool to convey social commentary & engage dialogue on Nepal's political climate. She partnered with their local university and art's community; and with the help of a dynamic team she succeeded in completing an effective program, art exhibition & gala for their diplomatic community as well as utilizing her filmmaking background to produce public service announcements related to her program for the UNDP. The success of her UNDP project in Nepal was written up in several publications, including the renowned Frieze Magazine by Kurchi Dasgupta. As a filmmaker, Michelle was the recipient of the Kodak and Panavision Emerging Filmmakers Sponsorship, and officially selected as a participant in the Directing Initiative hosted by the television network CBS. Michelle’ Short Film The Jamaican Gypsy won Best Dramtic Short at the African Heritage Film Series in Santa Barbara, California. Her list of other films include The Mime Love Story (2009), She Run Dance Girl (2009), Clara’s Dance (2008), Lourdes (2003), and Blowin’ Up Spots (2004). Michelle also has a background in education where she has worked as a Learning Facilitator with the LAUSD, and other educational institutions and facilities. Today, she runs her own organization, A Map to You Creative Advocacy, which supports emerging artists and produces events like Head Wraps in the Park Market Festival. A Map to You Creative Advocacy has supported fundraising for artists to travel overseas to expand upon their work, to sell their work and to build upon their conceptual projects, in addition to building installations in public spaces to expose the community to innovative art. Her roster of artist-beneficiaries continues to grow, along with the anticipation of new works to support for the coming year.

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