Students from West High school’s SAIL (Student Achievement through Individualized Learning) program help create a lovely jungle-themed mural for Centro Hispano’s Play & Learn room.

Williamson Street Art Center worked with the Leopold Neighborhood Association to create a painted mural fence and mosaic stepping stones for the Leopold Park. We worked at Leopold Elementart School during their “open school house.” Funding for the project was secured by the nieghborhoos association through a city neighborhood grant program.

2012 Leopold Neighborhood Artist-in-Residency

This fall high school students at Prairie Phoenix Academy were joined by middle school students from Cardinal Heights Upper Middle School to finish beautifying the last side of the building. Students worked on mosaic sections reflecting prairie flowers and painted landscapes with inspirational sayings. Students also did much of the power washing of the building to prepare the walls for paint and mosaic. This phase of the project was funded by Dane Arts’ Power 2 Give.

Play and Learn is a drop-in program for parents and their children who are age 5 and under. It is designed to offer kids who are not attending structured pre-school the opportunity to have fun while preparing for kindergarten success. Participants left ideas for the jungle-themed mural in a “drop-box.” Suggestions included monkeys, a waterfall, and a Sri Lanka – looking jungle. All the animals in the mural are animals found in Sri Lanka – except maybe the butterflies!

During the “We Rise Like the Phoenix” mural project, students from all 6 alternative programs helped create murals on 3 sides of the school building. The student-designed murals include important activities that happen at the school, inspirational slogans and mosaics. Funding for this phase of the project was provided by American Girl Fund for Children.

During our second mural residency in Mexico, we are at a secondary school that has a special focus on marine biology and other studies of the sea. All students did preliminary sketches with Indira, the art teacher from Entreamigos, the local community center. Then 15 students who showed interest and aptitude – and whose grades allowed them to be away from their regular studies for a week – were chosen by the administration to participate in the project. The group was wonderful – and was joined by a couple of community members who contributed greatly to the project. The mural is right on the main street into town. You can’t miss it when you visit San Pancho! (short for San Fransisco) Photos were taken by Wendy Schneider.

My friend, Carmen Perez, the principal of Drexel Bilingual Elementary School, knows how to dedicate a mural! We had a formal flag ceremony, speeches, the waving of streamers while the kids sang “We Are the World” – in English – and enough tres leches cake to feed one hundred! Some days I am the luckiest person in the world!! All photos were taken by Wendy Schneider.

Our first international mural residency was in January 2012 at the Drexel Bilingual Elementary School in Guadalajara Mexico. All photos are by Wendy Schneider.

Check out the video of the project by Wendy Schneider: