This semester, students walk through the campus admiring the new buildings, classrooms, and restorations. Although the school has been improved architecturally, one cannot help but notice that the walls are still bare and in need of something eye-catching and creative such as artwork.
The Student Art Association was the first to notice of the lack of color and took the initiative to beautify the school. Agneta Hurst, a student on campus and the Student Art Association president initially came up with the idea of painting a mural in the cafeteria.
“On our campus, there’s very little art in public places despite the fact that it’s a beautiful campus,” said Hurst.
An influence of personal surroundings and artist Henri Matisse’s artwork brought upon the theme for the mural. Created with abstract designs, the mural portrays the celebration of student life. A variety of acrylic paintings on canvas give the mural a cheerful effect. Although it was a costly project, the Inter-Organizational Campus (IOC) helped fund a small portion of the cost. However, the club handled most of the expenses.
In December 2002, the artists Hurst, Naomi Abe, Damian Chavez, Minoru Cerada, Marion Dies and Cheri Uno began the project, and were in charge of designing it (the mural), organizing the procedure, and carrying it through its completion.
The students along with Hurst made several proposals of what the mural should look like, took different components of each idea and combined them into a solid creation.
“It was a real learning process integrating it all together,” said Hurst.
An important aspect for putting the mural together was conducting a space on campus where the artists could paint comfortably. The artists worked hard during the weekends to bring the mural together. An essential contributor to the success of the mural was Art Club Adviser Susan Sing.
“There’s a need for art on campus,” said Sing. Her dedication to the artists’ needs also inspired other advisors in the club to be involved.
Annabelle Aylmer, the second of three art advisers, was involved in the technical and administrative portion of the mural, and was inspired to work on the project because of the energy of the students. “I’m absolutely delighted that we have a group of students that would take on a project like this,” said Aylmer.
Abe had a major involvement in designing the mural, since she portrays an interest in body emotions, fluid shaped figures and movements.
Uno was highly involved in the painting portion of the mural, and Dies, who has had a lot of experience in art, contributed to the enlarging of the mural and the lay out.
Chavez was also an important contributor to the mural and is currently a student at Pasadena Art Center College of Design. The students completed the mural in March.