August 9, 2012 | 4:00 PM
Presented by Levi's and Intel, "Friends of..." is a program that brings together notable pioneers to offer apparel products, digital resources, and public events in support of educational initiatives and social causes around the world. This year, Levi's and Intel will launch two new "Friends of..." programs, using Ultrabooks™ to share skills and spread expertise from visual art and design technology pioneers to organizations that are dedicated to social causes and education.
Brazilian-born visual artist Vik Muniz leads the first of the new "Friends of..." programs. Vik will team up with friends to help bring skills, awareness, and support to the Spectaculu Art and Technology School in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Spectaculu is an amazing organization that provides free artistic and technical education and workshops for 17-21 year-olds living in Rio's notoriously violent favelas. Spectaculu's mission is to bridge "the digital divide" between communities at the fringes of society and richer neighborhoods.
It takes more than access to technology to bridge this divide. It takes personal instruction: the transference of technical know-how and inspiration from experts to aspiring students. It's this kind of access that's so often missing, and that's exactly what Vik shared when he visited Spectaculu. He gave lectures about useful technical skills as well as concepts and theories of visual art. Levi's and Intel provided Ultrabooks for Spectaculu's students to use.
Finally, all four of Vik's friends will create T-shirt designs that will be displayed and sold at Levi's stores worldwide in support of Spectaculu. In select flagship stores in Brazil and in the U.S., Ultrabook displays will allow visitors to learn more about the program alongside the products.
There will be more exciting news about "Friends of..." in the near future, so check back at The Ultrabook Experience for updates about "Friends of..." Vik Muniz, in addition to announcements about what's next, as Intel and Levi's take "Friends of..." global later this year.