'360 Degrees Vanishing' - Giant art project created from beads

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- One local artist's dream is quickly starting to take shape in southwest Houston. Selven O'Keef Jarmon lived in South Africa for a number of years. He told Eyewitness News his was inspired to create large scale tapestries made of 350,000 plus beads. Beading is an art form, even a way of life in the African country. However, Jarmon and others said it's declining in popularity.

"It hit me like a ton of bricks you could be so close to a thing to not see a thing," said. ""This project is larger than beading. The cultural of beading is vanishing from the South African landscape."

Jarmon recruited the South African government to help back the project. Their support helped bring on other community partners here in Houston. Sixteen beaders, like Bulelwa Bam, plan to travel to Texas to take part in the art work. They plan to help volunteers learn the craft.

"This is a very interesting project. Also, it's to show young people beading is not only limited to accessories, and necklaces," said Bam.

Those, like Maryilyn Sanders, working to make the piece come to life said it's enjoyable.

"It's not hard. It's just tedious," said Sander. "Once you get the pattern, it's pretty easy to do with our helpers guidance here."

After months and hours of work, the piece will be installed on the Art League of Houston off Montrose. Jarmon said he hopes to have it in place by November. He wants the giant art to spark a conversation about how we're fighting more and more to preserve part of the past.
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