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October 17, 2018

Lanigan Students Learn the Art of Storytelling


Lanigan students enjoyed a performance called “StoryFaces” by artist and storyteller Christopher Agostino, a presentation about the art of storytelling through face painting.

Student Jack Phillips displays the Native American folk story of a boy trapped inside the belly of a shark.

Student Jack Phillips displays the Native American folk story of a boy trapped inside the belly of a shark.

Agostino shared the history of ancient storytelling as well as some of the same face painting techniques that are used by professionals in Hollywood.

The “paint” used is really not paint at all, but a high quality, non-toxic makeup.

Students volunteered to come on stage to have their faces painted as Agostino told an array of stories, some written by him, others descending from Native American folktale.

One story was that of a brave boy who allowed a shark to swallow him whole to save his village.

From inside the shark, the boy built a fire that caused the shark great pain. The shark begged to know how to put the fire out. The boy told the shark that the only way to put the fire out would be to swallow sand. The shark was desperate, and so helplessly laying on the beach, the shark opened his mouth to swallow sand, which allowed the boy to escape and defeat the shark.

Lanigan student Jack Phillips volunteered to have his face painted as the story was told.

Students display their freshly-painted faces after Christopher Agostino’s “StoryFaces” presentation at Lanigan Elementary.

Students display their freshly-painted faces after Christopher Agostino’s “StoryFaces” presentation at Lanigan Elementary.

When he turned around, an image of a boy inside of the shark’s mouth was revealed.

“Storytelling is a universal, timeless art,” said Agostino. “I do art, and I do storytelling, and my canvases are faces.”

The students learned that storytelling has been around for centuries, not only as a form of entertainment, but a form of communication and relaying of history.

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