Zshuk Children's Art Initiative
Zshuk Art Initiative is a new idea that will combine the creation of an arts publication with teaching artist residencies for children age 4-18. This project seeks to raise the status of children’s creative skills as writers and artists by having them publish their own materials to with a wider audience, bringing art into the lives of young people. This initiative will empower children in the Russian-Jewish community and beyond to develop their individual creative expression through authentic arts practice and to transform learning about Judaism into an exciting, hands-on experience.
Zhenya is a Ukrainian-born artist and teacher who immigrated to the United States in 1990. She became interested in turning her passion for art into an opportunity to educate after creating collaborative artwork with other artists and writers from the Russian-speaking community. In 2005 she began teaching art in public schools and, a few years later, received her Master’s degree in Art Education from the Pratt Institute. Along with her husband, she was a recipient of a mini grant, as well as a participant in the Blueprint Fellowship–both organized by the Council of Jewish Emigre Community Organizations (COJECO). The recent birth of her daughter has given her a new dimension to her experiences and artwork.