Join O.N.E. and Earth Activist, Ardelle Ferrer as she shares about the regeneration of the Ceiba Tree on Vieques, Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria. She will also speak about the creation of a park around the ancient Ceiba Tree and the meaning it holds for the community and the land.
A protest movement, known among locals as “the struggle,” finally ousted the Navy in 2003. Four years later, Ferrer and others started La Ceiba Community Project to remove trash and debris from the grassy area around the ancient tree.
“She brought us all together to restore that space, which is now used by the locals all the time,” Ferrer said. “It’s a symbol of hope that we can continue, that things may get hard but if we stand strong we can make it.”
Today, the ceiba is the centerpiece of a 51-acre coastal park where endangered manatees, green turtles, and brown pelicans live. On rainy days, water pools in the bowl-shaped crannies between the tree’s twisted limbs, attracting tiny crabs and wild horse, who drink the rainwater.
Nature is Ardelle’s artistic muse. Her life is colored by evolutionary change , as is her art. Ardelle’s artistic history has and will continue to eternally emphsize the protection of our natural environment. Her deep connectivity to nature started as a child and has continued to be inspired by Puerto Rico’s natural wonders, where she first learned how to connect with the trees of El Yunque rainforest and the raw elements of nature.
Since 2007, Ardelle has dedicated endless community based efforts to the preservation of a 400 year old Ceiba tree site, located in the heart of El Parque de Ceiba in Vieques, Puerto Rico. Ardelle is the principal force promoting the legacy of the sacred ceiba tree and the primary organizer of projects that encourage the youth of Vieques to absorb the wealth of knowledge the ceiba tree has to offer to the local and global community. The goal of the community outreach project is to incorporate art, culture, nature , and spirituality, in a way that emphasizes the conservation of the land of our ancestors, the sacredness of the tree, and its teachings.
Ardelle received her BFA, Magna Cum Laude, from the Puerto Rico School of Fine Art and postgraduate studies at the Urban Glass studio in New York. She has been awarded with several prizes for artistic excellence and her art includes multiple performances , expositions , symposiums, stained and fused glass , sculptures , public murals , installations , and monumental works of the ephemeral. She looks forward to sharing her passions with you.
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