A Map to You Creative Advocacy is our nonprofit foundational division which supports artist's participation within international residencies, exhibiting & selling their work during our annual market festival, and building installations in public spaces to expose the community to innovative art as well as fostering an appreciation for artisanal works.

Our international art residential program enables selected artists-candidates to travel to our partnering location in Nepal, and explore their rich culture of fine arts. We enable our artist-residents to exhibit their work overseas, and share their experiences through a panel-series with our local community members.

The art installation initiative, allows artists to participate in our annual market festivals/events, by providing resources for invited artists to build live art installation works. The installation exhibits are free and accessible to the public.

Live Installation Works Sponsored by A Map to You Creative Advocacy

Head Wraps in the Park, is our market festival of which we are founders of and produced during the years of both 2016 and 2017. It is a platform for artists, craftsmen, and creatives of a diverse professional spectrum to showcase and sell their handmade items. In addition, through the annual festival, we support and provide a platform for entrepreneurs from underserved communities to market and build their clientele. We sponsor a panel with experts that provide informative discussions on socially relevant topics such as healthcare, body positivity, social and creative entrepreneurship and a wide range of other topics.

Work by Artist Beneficiaries of A Map to You Creative Advocacy Event, Programming & Fundraising

Our goal with A Map to You Creative Advocacy is to:

  • Foster an appreciation for innovative art
  • Bridge culture and communities through art
  • Enable creative professionals/entrepreneurs to sustain a viable income
  • And provide positive, inclusive and engaging community programming
Live Installation Works Sponsored by A Map to You Creative Advocacy

Our organization intends to establish a lasting and positive societal imprint by supporting the diverse creative voices that help to enrich our communities and international society. It is our hope to provide the necessary resources to enable artistic innovations and opportunities to be accessible to the public and the individuals it is intended to professionally nurture and empower

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 with an article 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’s short film, The Jamaican Gypsy, won Best Dramatic 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, Indigo Union, and A Map to You Art|Shop Artisanal Trading Post & Exhibition. 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.

To learn more visit our homepage at: www.amaptoyou.com

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