Best of the Bronx: Students hand-draw portraits for Colombian children

Posted: Updated:
SCHUYLERVILLE -

A group of Bronx high schoolers are connecting with children in Colombia by creating artwork that is on an international mission.

Putting pencil to paper, the students are learning a lesson that goes beyond the classroom.

Portraits are part of the curriculum in Aimee Cavazzi's art class at Bronx River High School, but the 20 or so juniors and seniors are turning to complete strangers for inspiration.

"I felt that it would give the children a deeper meaning behind the artwork, to give them a chance to use art as a bridge between two different communities," says Cavazzi.

With help from the nonprofit The Memory Project, the students were paired with photos of children in Colombia living in extreme poverty.
The assignment is to use these faces as muses, and for many the experience got personal.

“He almost looks identical to my brother so, I wouldn't want anything to happen to my brother, I only want him to laugh and whatever, so I want him to smile," says 11th-grader Miguel Aviles.

A reaction many of these Bronx teenagers hope the children will have when the finished portraits are sent to them in Colombia.

"They built a relationship with the art, and really became connected, some of our students started even calling them their children, so it was really cute," says Cavazzi.

  • Best of The BronxMore>>

  • Best of the Bronx: Ivan Ramos, aka 'Bronx Spidey'

    Best of the Bronx: Ivan Ramos, aka 'Bronx Spidey'

    Monday, April 22 2019 11:41 PM EDT2019-04-23 03:41:20 GMT
    Best of the Bronx: Ivan RamosBest of the Bronx: Ivan Ramos
    Best of the Bronx: Ivan RamosBest of the Bronx: Ivan Ramos
    The Bronx is the only borough in the city to not have its own Marvel superhero, so one West Farms resident took it upon himself to be a hero in his neighborhood.
    The Bronx is the only borough in the city to not have its own Marvel superhero, so one West Farms resident took it upon himself to be a hero in his neighborhood.
  • Best of the Bronx: Poet Alyssa Martinez

    Best of the Bronx: Poet Alyssa Martinez

    Friday, March 15 2019 6:59 AM EDT2019-03-15 10:59:20 GMT
    One Bronx girl has been inspiring others with her poetry, even getting the attention of Lin Manuel Miranda and former first lady Michelle Obama.
    One Bronx girl has been inspiring others with her poetry, even getting the attention of Lin Manuel Miranda and former first lady Michelle Obama.
  • Best of the Bronx: Royal Khaoz

    Best of the Bronx: Royal Khaoz

    Tuesday, March 5 2019 10:18 PM EST2019-03-06 03:18:29 GMT
    A reggae band on the rise in the Bronx is getting the chance to perform side-by-side with artists like Nas at an upcoming music festival.
    A reggae band on the rise in the Bronx is getting the chance to perform side-by-side with artists like Nas at an upcoming music festival.
sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."