Lately that I've been missing from the forum, I've been working on a enormous project. I'd love some inputs and advice from you guys.
The project I've been working on came from one day when I've been sitting sleepily on the bus the idea came to me. It was from then on that I've been working on it ever since.
The project was mainly about the ethnic-subculture rights. In Thailand, many ethnic groups have been suppressed and pressured by government and mainstream culture to abandon their way of life and adapt to mainstream one. More than that, there are many issues regarding land, language and cultural bias where they are discouraged from being proud of their heritage. Their cultures and uniqueness are slowly dying out because they are afraid to be themselves, to teach their children the heritage of their own people. They are now even shy away from dressing in their ethnic clothing except in special circumstances (which almost always involving tourism, thanks to the government). I've been working on this project, and since now I'm in the university, I am using its resources.
It's going to be a long term project though, and not only in just Thailand, but now it's all I can do. This project I'm working on is the initiative one and I'd love your ideas.
I'm thinking of hosting an exhibition. The exhibition itself will mainly revolving around ethnic problems under the theme of 'darkness behind the white curtain'. The exhibition will be a combination of hardcore academic including seminar sessions, publishing a book collecting individual articles on ethnography and overall information and facts and things on the ethnicity which will be written in 3 languages, Thai, English and ethnic's own language. Because I know that academic aspect of this exhibition will be exceptionally boring to most people so I've been thinking of toning down the hardcore academic aspects and make it more relatable and approachable.
The other part of exhibition is the artistic one. I've been thinking of using arts, fashions and crafts of ethnics to be their representatives. Now I'm negotiating with neighboring School of Decorative Art of my University to help me with this. The product I've been thinking about is using their textile and styles and adapt them to be more relatable and fashionable. Because of that there will be a fashion show and workshops. The fashion show, at the very least I want to put the 'soul' of these ethnics, like how they behave and how their demeanor is and show it out along with their crafts and textiles. But the details I will leave it to people from Dec.-Art to decide. Though whatever they come up will at least have to be backed with symbolism and information (which my major will provide). And of course, a magazine and catalog coupled with articles and things. More than that I aim for more, including articles on modern art with ethnic flavour and uses these ideas to make some real impact on the ethnic society.
The thing is I'd love some advice on this project and if you could give me some ideas. Because right now, even if I have a clear goal (to send out question that whether actually to suppress the ethnic uniqueness is right or is it wrong) I still feel like this project is a bit bland and might need some more flavour. The theme is clear, but the colour within it is still bland. And more than that, the project is exceptionally big (co-working between 2 schools are already big, the ethnic topic needs information that must be made from the ground up for instance) and it'd take so much skill and dedication to finish. I'd love some advice regarding the organization part as well.
Now I'm thinking of contacting people to help me capitalize the exhibition and invite people of influence (writers, academics) to hold the seminar along with my fellow students, everyone can send their articles and if it's good then it will be included. And more than that I'm thinking of contacting the tribes (currently planning to contact the Maniq, Hmong and Moken, since I can speak a bit of Kensiu (one of the languages Maniq people speak)) and acting as a messenger to deliver the message these people want to send out.
It's one of the least I can do for the fellow humans I love. With my resources now.