Migrate Art, the pioneering arts organisation that harnesses the power of creativity to support the world’s most vulnerable communities, presents its latest project, From the Ashes, dedicated to raising funds for two Indigenous Associations of Upper Xingu in the Amazon Rainforest, whose land has been extensively targeted by illegal deforestation.
Above image: Production of From the Ashes materials at Cranfield
From the Ashes Exhibition and Auction
Produced in collaboration with the London-based arts research centre People’s Palace Projects, From the Ashes comprises an exhibition of new works by 29 contemporary artists – Indigenous and non-Indigenous – from around the world, including Cornelia Parker, Idris Khan, Loie Hollowell, Richard Long, Shezad Dawood and Tacita Dean, which will be on view at The Truman Brewery in London in February 2024 and go on sale as part of Christie’s Post War & Contemporary Day and First Open sales in March 2024.
These illustrious artists have joined forces to create unique From the Ashes pieces, using paints, inks and pastels formulated from the ash and charcoal salvaged from the burnt remnants of the Amazon, created in partnership Jackson’s Art Supplies.
These works will be auctioned at Christie’s with proceeds supporting the resistance of the Xingu people, and sustain Indigenous fire brigades through purchasing equipment and funding training programmes. Funds raised will also support the development of Indigenous-led reforesting initiatives across the Xingu territory to help the forest recover.
Motivated by the rising global temperatures and extreme conditions that have filled the headlines in recent years, Migrate Art founder Simon Butler joined a trip with People’s Palace Projects in the Brazilian Amazon in July 2022, spending time with the Wauja and Kuikuro people who are resisting deforestation and climate change within their home. The village leaders showed Butler the areas of the forest that had been burnt down due to illegal logging to make way for cattle and soy and he was given permission to bring back ash and charcoal from the burnt remnants. Building on the success of Migrate Art’s previous large-scale ventures Multicolour and Scorched Earth, From the Ashes is centred around the idea of transforming the destruction of the Xingu territory into creation, addressing the urgent need for conservation and protection of the Amazon Rainforest, and support the fight of the communities who call it home.
About the Xingu
The Xingu is a protected Indigenous territory in the South Basin of the Brazilian Amazon Rainforest of more than 2.6 million hectares (approx. the size of Belgium) and home to 16 Indigenous communities, including the Wauja and the Kuikuro people. One of the world’s most ethnically and linguistically diverse Indigenous territories, it is also the largest remaining island of tropical forest in the Brazilian Amazon’s arc of deforestation. The Xingu stands today as one of the main barriers to deforestation in the Amazon. Over the past decade, intensive farming, indiscriminate use of pesticides, the expansion of cattle, mining, land grabbing, deforestation and river alteration outside the territory have changed the regional hydroclimate and increased the frequency and intensity of droughts and forest fires. This project is a partnership with the Wauja people of the Ulupuwene village, and the Kuikuro people of the Ipatse village.
Simon Butler says of his experience in the Amazon Rainforest and the upcoming exhibition:
“Visiting the Amazon and the Indigenous Xingu communities has brought me face-to-face with the stark reality of the devastation of the rainforest – it has been a sharp wake-up call. From the Ashes aims to continue raising awareness of the climate crisis, which affects everyone – after my visit, I felt compelled to do everything in my power to support the Xingu communities in their fight against deforestation. In bringing together the works of contemporary and Indigenous artists, we hope to offer a new platform for discussion and action on this crisis. We arrived as strangers, but we left as friends, and I feel compelled to do all that I can to help the Xingu people in their fight to save the rainforest.”
Migrate Art has partnered with Jackson’s Art, Unison Colour and Cranfield Colours who have formulated paint, ink, and pastels from this ash and charcoal, and sent these unique materials to high profile contemporary and Indigenous artists across the world. This has resulted in a diverse selection of outstanding artworks, culminating in a truly timely exhibition.
From the Ashes Artist Kits
Unison Colour Handmade Pastel
Jackson’s Artist Oil 60 ml tube
Jackson’s Professional Acrylic 60 ml tube
Cranfield Traditional Relief Ink 15 ml tube
Cranfield Liquid Ink 50 ml
Real Ash in 30 ml jar
Real Charcoal Lump in Paper Pack
Jackson’s have 100 of these Artist Kits available in our online shop. Proceeds raised and all the profit we make selling the kits online will provide vital support for Xingu Indigenous communities, such as firefighting equipment, reforesting initiatives, and monitoring technologies in the villages.
Exhibition: The Truman Brewery, Wednesday 21st – Sunday 25th February, 2024
Auction: Christie’s Post War and Contemporary Day Sale, Saturday 9th March 2024