As some of you will come to find, what often makes a classroom and it's instructor the strongest and most effective, are the opportunities, experiences, and events that take place OUTSIDE of the classroom that they are able to personally grow from in order to bring new, fresh developments back to benefit and educate their own students on their own campus.
So, one of these opportunities was a visit that I coordinated for the 2D art teacher across the street at Paxon High School, Mr. Jesse Nolan with the world renowned sculptor, Donald Gialanella.
Being a teacher is a full time job, y'all know this. But, being a GREAT teacher is a non-stop, 24/7 hustlin' adventure, especially if you add the ART teacherin' part into the that title! ( #TRUTH )
Ms. Holloway serves on two local boards for art education related non-profit organizations as well as the Artist Selection Panel for the 'Art in Public Places' Committee for the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville. Through these volunteer positions that I participate in, I open many exciting doors of creative opportunities for not only MY students, but all of the art students in Duval County.
Most recently, our CCGJ panel selected Donald Gialanella for a large scale public sculpture grant project which will begin installation in the fall of 2019 and Jacksonville could not be more honored.
The most riveting speaker yet, Gialanella had the brilliant art students of Paxon High floored with his presentation (and it's safe to say that Mr. Nolan and myself agree!) This guy is the REAL artist deal.
Gialanella was selected out of over 70 national applicants to create not one, but TWO large scale public sculptures here in Jacksonville funded through state grant money filtered from the CCGJ. He was in town for only three days creating sketches for this upcoming project and took time out of his short, busy time here to visit and speak to our DCPS students. I mean, WOW, you guys.
Don's work is constructed predominantly from recycled scrap metal and other discarded found objects. He focuses on recreating time capsules of aesthetic value out of re-purposed waste. He spoke to the students about falling in love with your on art work and never underestimating your own ambition. It was a true honor and a privilege to be in his presence.
The Paxon students were not the only ones who left that lecture feeling inspired to go out into the world and create! ADDED BONUS: I got to see and catch up with several of my old art students who are now thriving high school artists! (HEART SWELL!!!)
Don is coming back for a visit to Ribault High School in the classroom of Ms. Traci Mims- Jones soon too, so get ready to see some exciting images from that visit coming up soon too! And geeeez, there is still SO much more I haven't even covered that we have accomplished this past month.
I will need to wait for a later May post to touch on the newly acquired writing gig I've picked up for the free newspaper EUJacksonville the past few months. I am now publishing two article/ columns per month focused on our local arts scene as it relates to the Jacksonville youth. I LOVE IT!!!! Pick up a copy each month to read more of my words, thoughts, opinions, and suggestions on everything to do with kids, creativity, local arts, community building, and so much more!
May will also have to include a write up and picture post of our most recent art club public project put on by Flow Studio Art Center at the 2019 Annual beaches earth Day Festival on April 20th. (Just not enough room in this post, my apologies!)
Love, love, love, inspiration, creativity, and joy to you ALL. The arts are in everything and Ms. Holloway will keep reminding you monthly in every possible avenue she can find! YAY, ART!!!!