For a period of 8 months, children´s book illustrator/writer and art educator, Margarida Botelho travelled through Mozambique with a bag full of 'empty' books which were given out to members of the community. Step by step, page by page, the books were filled with an array of personal stories.
The project was based on a simple idea: If we can learn how to convey our life story in a book with words and illustrations perhaps we can further our awareness of who we are and what is around us.
This was part of Margarida's Encounters project. While on the MA Sequential Design/Illustration course at the University of Brighton, Faculty of Arts, Margarida received a UNESCO grant and support of Inov-Art (Portuguese Government) to develop and undertake this major community narrative project in Africa to help generate sustainable social development through storytelling.
Back in England she produced as her course work the children’s book and a stop-motion movie 'Eva' about how Africa and Europe meet through two children called Eva.
The Encounters project recognises that, in poor communities, communication can be a generator of sustainable social development. In Africa, Margarida Botelho worked in a number of areas: on the Island of Mozambique, in some Maputo slums, a rural village and an International refugee camp. After the course, Margarida continued her work around the world, next working in Community Art Education Projects between Lisbon, Mozambique and Reserve Uatumã, Amazonia.
Margarida's stop-motion movie 'Eva'.
Margarida's own film of studio work, making her movie 'Eva'