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$16,566
pledged of $130,000pledged of $130,000 goal
12
backers
46days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Sat, July 6 2019 2:44 PM UTC +00:00.

Megan MacDonellBy Megan MacDonell
First created
Megan MacDonellBy Megan MacDonell
First created
$16,566
pledged of $130,000pledged of $130,000 goal
12
backers
46days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Sat, July 6 2019 2:44 PM UTC +00:00.

About

Casa Chuy will be a Creative Eco-Philanthropic Yoga retreat located in Yelapa México, just south of Puerto Vallarta. Casa Chuy will build a bridge between culture, tourism and community in order to create educational and creative opportunities through art and yoga workshops. Guests will incorporate mind and body while participating in philanthropic projects at the local and international level. Casa Chuy will be constructed in an ecologically sound way using various alternative materials, such as bricks made from recycled plastic, for portions of the build. Well known artists and yogis are to be invited to teach workshops which involve community outreach, environmental awareness, cultural consciousness, creativity, spiritual evolution and personal growth.  Projects will vary depending on the mission of individual retreats. During the off season Casa Chuy will provide residencies for artists and personal retreats for yogis through the use of its three apartments and studio spaces. These apartments may also be used as air bnb rentals when not otherwise in use.  
 

Casa Chuy was named after the woman who conceptualized the original structure on her families land and together with her husband constructed every brick by hand. She was a woman who literally worked herself to death for her children to have a better future and died at the age of 41 doing so. It was her dream to live in the very house that we will be resurrecting but could not because she essentially lived in the restaurant that she worked at. It is my intention to honor her ambition and drive by creating something beautiful for the community and world. Welcome... Casa Chuy. Creativity, Hospitality, Universality and Yoga.
 

Creatividad, Hospitalidad, Universalidad, y Yoga.

The Product
     Casa Chuy will offer yoga and art workshops to tourists and local community members. These workshops will be taught by well known artists and yogis and will involve community outreach, environmental awareness, cultural consciousness, creativity, spiritual evolution and personal growth. Each retreat will incorporate an AM yoga flow class, followed by a mid day break and then an afternoon art/creative workshop. While some workshops may focus on art or yoga the majority of Casa Chuy's retreats will strive to incorporate body and mind though integrating movement and creation. Below are a few examples of potential workshops:

Ceramics Workshop

Liliana Folta and Nikki Waichunus will teach participants basic and advanced ceramic techniques using locally sourced clay.  Liliana Folta is an internationally known artist who  draws on personal experiences, social-political issues and the environment to create  ceramic sculptures and installations. Nikki Waichunus is a master ceramicist who produces immaculate dinner ware for galleries and restaurants all over the US. 

 Ceramics of Jalisco, Mexico has a history that extends far back in the pre-hispanic period, but modern production is the result of techniques introduced by the Spanish during the colonial period and the introduction of high-fire production in the 1950s and 1960s by Jorge Wilmat and Ken Edwards. Today various types of traditional ceramics such as bruñido, canelo and petatillo are still made, along with high fire types like stoneware, with traditional and nontraditional decorative motifs. Yelapa has a large supply of red clay which is no longer used by local artisans. These artisans will be invited to participate in the workshop free of charge in order to reintroduce the lost art back to the community, teaching them a skill which would generate future income and start a creative conversation between tourists and locals. 

Huichol Workshop

Local Huichol Indians will be invited to teach their native craft to workshop participants. Traditional Huichol art uses colorful decoration, symbols and designs which date back centuries. The most common and commercially successful products are "yarn paintings" and objects decorated with small commercially produced beads. Yarn paintings consist of commercial yarn pressed into boards coated with wax and resin and are derived from a ceremonial tablet called a neirika. The Huichol have a long history of beading, making the beads from clay, shells, corals, seeds and more and using them to make jewelry and to decorate bowls and other items. The "modern" beadwork usually consists of masks and wood sculptures covered in small, brightly colored commercial beads fastened with wax and resin. A collaboration of ancient and contemporary would  be achieved through this workshop by inviting the artisans to apply their traditional beadwork to a clean, modern forms which would be sculpted from recycled materials. These contemporary pieces would be exhibited in Casa Chuy's gallery space, Puerto Vallarta galleries and potentially imported to the United States in order to provide an additional source of income to the Huichol people.  

Creative Flow Workshop

New York yoga teacher and actress, Sarah Sol, will be invited to teach a creative flow movement and mind based workshop in collaboration with Megan MacDonell, local artists and community members. This workshop will focus on opening up the energetic centers and pathways of the body in order to access ones creative path. These channels which, in traditional Indian medicine and spiritual knowledge are known as the Nadis, the energies such as prana of the physical body, the subtle body and the casual body are said to flow. Within this philosophical framework, the nadis are said to connect at special points of intensity, the chakras. The three principal nadis are the ida on the left, the sushumna in the centre, and the pingala on the right; they run from the base of the spine to the head. In addition to learning tools to free up this energy through asana, meditation, and pranayama, we will then incorporate this new found source of inspiration while working with local community members on a community mural project. 

Risks and challenges

One potential challenge that Casa Chuy presents is the difficulty of building in a foreign country and specifically in a town which is only accessible by boat. Fortunately I have hired a consultant who rebuilt a home in Yelapa two years ago and is familiar with the process. He is a civil engineer and has been advising me on how to go about building in México.

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    Casa Chuy T-shirt

    Casa Chuy T-shirt and the donor's name will be added to the peace wall which will surround Casa Chuy- acknowledging their contribution.

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    Catered dinner for six

    Enjoy a catered dinner for six by a professional chef at Megan MacDonell’s home overlooking the rogue valley and receive a Casa Chuy T-shirt and your name on the donor wall.

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    Weeks stay at Casa Chuy

    A complementary weeks stay at Casa Chuy in Yelapa, Mexico and the donor's name will be added to the peace wall which will surround Casa Chuy- acknowledging their contribution.

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    Week long Yoga and Art retreat

    One free yoga and art workshop/ retreat including room and board. Donor's name will be added to the peace wall which will surround Casa Chuy- acknowledging their contribution.

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