Taiz: the colors of life
Taiz, known as the “Romantic City,” is getting ready to roll out a new educational project in local schools called “Taiz: the Colors of Life.”
The goal of the project is to educate both students and teachers about different art forms and to spread an appreciation of art culture around the city.
Art has traditionally been taught as a second priority subject in Taiz schools, as it was considered to be less important than other subjects like mathematics, reading, writing, and the sciences.
However, this new initiative is intended to simplify the art curriculum by standardizing it and introducing it as a fundamental subject.
The project aims include elements from the streets of Taiz, such as study of graffiti as an art form. Graffiti has traditionally been viewed in a negative light, this initiative is trying to change that.
"Teachers and students will be given comprehensive courses for this project until we achieve our goals. One of which is to paint the national anthem on the wall of parliament, hopefully serving to enhance relations between the people and the state.” Dr. Mufeed Al Yosefi, one of the main sponsors of the project, said.
Those involved in the project strongly believe in its message and have worked hard to keep politics out of it. They believe it can benefit all members of the Taiz community and most of them volunteer their own time.
"Taiz’s culture can be shown through graffiti. We use all kinds of shapes in all kinds of vivid colors to try and spread a culture of peace. We also portray famous Yemeni intellectuals like Al-Baradoni and Abdulaziz Al -Magaleh,” Mamoon Al Magtari, one of the artists participating in the project, told Yemen Times.
Al-Magtari added, "Soon we will start drawing on the wall of the Great People’s bridge near Sabra Mountain."
“It should be mentioned that graffiti first started to appear on the walls of Sana'a about three months ago,” Murad Subai, who is said to be the first graffiti artist in Sana’a, told Yemen Times.
“The joint project between Taiz and Sana'a is to replace violent political views with optimistic and peaceful ones."
Graffiti is still a fledgling art form, both in Sana'a and Taiz, but it’s growing in popularity very quickly. This project is completely volunteer-based, so any one can participate in helping transform the plain streets of Yemen into ones with bright colors and positive messages.
This is the potential that local doctors Mufeed Al-Yosefi and Murad Subai see in the project.
“We want to decorate the streets, not dirty them. This project will help us make the city a more beautiful, peaceful place to live,” said Subai.