Join BCD’s teaching artists and K-9 students on Tuesday, May 31st from 3:30 – 5:30PM to celebrate artworks created during the spring trimester! Open Studios is a special opportunity for parents, families, and friends to view experimental and finished works of art in each of our three atelier spaces. Students and faculty will be present to talk about projects and experiences as they pull back the curtain on their ideas and processes. This term, our distinguished teaching artists included Tom O’Neil, Maggie Mailer, Ben Evans, and Max Spitzer. Come sip lemonade, view extraordinary works of art, and hear from the artists themselves!
In conjunction with Reader-to-Reader, a Springfield-based non-profit organization, the Fifth Grade is collecting books!
Reader-to-Reader serves children in rural and underserved communities in the US and around the world. We are excited to continue this community service project in 2016! Last year, Fifth Grade collected several hundred books for this important cause.
Please bring your gently used children’s books (through Grade 9) to the Fifth Grade homeroom in the next week. No textbooks, magazines, videos or reference materials, please!
Our K-9 students have been as busy as ever in the Art Studios this winter! Grades 5 and 6 have been hand building with Mr. Evans in the Ceramics Studio while Mr. Spitzer has Kindergarten through Fourth grade students working on a variety of collaborative drawing and painting projects next door. Upper School students are sculpting in clay with Mr. Evans and painting with this trimester’s teaching artists Tom O’Neil and Maggie Mailer. We can’t wait to show parents, friends, and the BCD community what we’ve been up to on TUESDAY, MARCH 1st at our Winter Open Studios Event! Everyone is invited to swing by the studios between 4:30 – 6:30PM to see finished artworks, works-in-progress, and a few surprises. Warm up with a cup of hot cocoa and join us in celebrating the students’ hard work this trimester!
Where there’s smoke there’s POTTERY, the Evans/Spitzer takeover, and Westward HO HO HO!
NEWSFLASH from the Art Studios!
To cap off the end of the first trimester, Upper School ceramics students completed an ambitious pottery project involving traditional decorating and firing techniques inspired by the work of Magdalene Odundo. Clay pieces were burnished with terra sigillata and given an iron wash before being fired in saggars in an outdoor pit firing kiln which the students built by hand. Using bricks, wood pieces, and sawdust students assembled the pit, inserted their pieces, and lit the interior on fire before covering the top to preserve the high temperature and to produce smoke. The kiln burned for 24 hours before the final artworks were removed.
In other Arts Block news, Mr. Knoll’s Drawing students received a special visit from artist Valaire Van Slyck last week. The Detroit native paints urban scenes using auto-motive paints, acrylic, confetti, and glitter among other mixed media. Students were treated to individual conversations and critiques from Valaire as they worked on their graphic novel projects.
Teaching artists Ben Evans and Max Spitzer have stepped in to offer new media and experiences for our K-6 students! Kindergarten through Fourth Grade students are working with Mr. Evans this winter for an in-depth trimester of pinching, pounding, and hand-building with clay in the Ceramics Studio. Meanwhile, Mr. Spitzer takes charge of the Fifth and Sixth Grade classes as they delve into a term packed with drawing and painting projects. Great things are bound to emerge with this dynamic duo at the helm!
Students become cowboys and cowgirls as part of BCD’s contribution to the Berkshire Museum’s 2015 Festival of Trees. Fully embracing the theme “Westward Ho, Ho, Ho” in conjunction with the museum’s current exhibits, “Greatest Photographs of the American West” and “Go West“, Lower and Middle School students posed for photos which were then cut and pasted into authentic images of old west characters. Real and fictional, from Annie Oakley to Clint Eastwood, students embodied sharp shooters, outlaws, deputies, and lawmen. The images were printed in sepia tone, mounted on burlap, and hung on the tree with handwritten quotes from these characters along with other rustic, copper decorations. Click HERE to read more about BCD’s tree and the Festival of Trees in the Berkshire Eagle!
Last week, 5th Grade students had an opportunity to get up close and personal with artworks by world-renown artists at Mass MoCA. In conjunction with our study of installation art, a guided tour focused on site-specific works by Francesco Clemente, Jim Shaw, and Clifford Ross. From Indian tents to failing superheros, to a 100 foot photograph, students participated in an active viewing experience that called for critical thinking, aesthetic interpretation, and personal reflection. Following the tour, the class had an art-making session in the museum’s Kidspace studio where visual prompts from the Jim Shaw exhibition allowed students to create their own narrative comic strips. Special thanks to Dr. Lederman and Debbie Jaferian for joining us on the adventure!
Back at BCD, the class is working on a collaborative installation of their own. Students wrapped over 200 paper cups in plaster strips that, when dried, yielded cup-like forms which were then dipped in purple, green, and blue paint. This week, the 5th Grade will work together to install the pieces in a space in the school. Stay tuned to see the final installation!