FUNDED! This project was successfully funded on February 15, 2013. Find other projects

THE BAREFOOT ARTIST, a film by Glenn Holsten and Daniel Traub


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Lily Yeh is a global artist who is fueled by a belief that art is a human right, and that artists can create a foundation for profound social change. Slight of frame, but large in spirit and vision, the 70-year-old artist was born in China, lives in Philadelphia, and now, as constant traveler, the world is her canvas.

The Barefoot Artist is co-directed by Glenn Holsten and Daniel Traub, Lily Yeh’s son. Daniel is also the cinematographer, so it is through his eyes that we follow Lily on her journey.

The film traces Lily’s evolution as an artist - from her first exposure to Chinese landscape painting as a young girl in China to the hauntingly beautiful memorial she designed to honor the victims of the 1994 genocide in Rwanda.  It details her methodology for community building - using art as the foundation - which she has developed over many years. Finally, it reveals the source of her quest, and the personal costs of a life committed to the public.

After seven years in the making, filming is now complete. We have raised significant funds from foundations including CHG Charitable Trust, The Philadelphia Foundation, New Path Foundation and Compton Foundation. These funds have allowed us to complete a rough edit. Now, we need a final push to support the final editing, original music, animation, color correct and sound mix – all the elements that will complete the film.

It has been an adventure and privilege working on this film. We are certain that it will be beautiful, inspiring and important. It is a story that needs to be shared with the world and we need your help to make it happen. 

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    • April 06, 2013

      Nicky Watts


      Los Angeles, CA

      This makes me happy.
    • February 08, 2013

      Tami Zwicke


      Franklin, WI

      Congratulations on your successful fundraising. Your project looks great!
    • January 28, 2013

      Jane Griffo

      Community Member

      Jacksonville, FL

      So beautiful! God bless and I hope you great success!
Donated of $150,000 goal.


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This project is funded!

Donate as little as $1, or get exclusive perks for your support...

Thank you on the film website + Rwandan Bead necklace + DVD of the film
Rwandan Basket + All of the above
Signed copy of the book Awakening Creativity by Lily Yeh + All of the above
Rwanda carved wood mask + All of the above
Rwandan Quilt + All of the above
VIP invite to Philadelphia premiere + dinner with filmmakers and Lily Yeh + All of above
Underwriter credit + limited edition Lily Yeh print + All of the above
Workshop with Lily Yeh + All of the above
Daniel Traub is a Brooklyn based photographer and filmmaker.
Media Visual Arts