Kindergarten mural from children’s cut-outs

This mural is at the front entrance of Aiga kindergarten in Sumoto city on Awaji Island, Japan.

It is a collage of childrens drawings scattered around, painted large, with rainbow raindrops bringing it together. The kindergarten already had a rainbow arch… so I just continued the theme to make something fun and welcoming. (I also kept the background cream colour and pink bar that continues all around the buiolding.

This is a picture of the participating kids and their artworks.

A cute moment when I thought the project was finished but this little girl informed me I had forgotten the nostrils of her horse. (quickly rectified).

For the first workshop day I brought rainbow paper (made with a roller and water based paint) and we cut out shapes, monsters and bits and bobs. Then we arranged them, glued them down and added a few details like eyes or flames.

These are the individual cut outs I selected to arrange and paint big on the side of the building (at least one from each child)

What is a “regional revitaliser” (地域おこし協力隊 – chiiki okoshi kyouryokutai)- in Japan?

It is a contract for 3 years with a regional “city” (not usually urban, just an area of countryside) that is supposed to bring life and interest to places that have a declining population. The aim is to bring tourists in, as well as encouraging people to relocate from the big cities. They also want to make the places desirable so that people don’t leave, 0r if young people go away to university, they want to come back to their “hometown”. In order to do this the city employs “regional revitalisers” to create events, projects, open businesses, make improvements etc. I was employed from 2019-2023 and in that time I started my indigo business

as well as creating murals and various other projects. There are thousands of these positions across rural Japan and at least a hundred or so are non-Japanese people, as far as I know.