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Media Contact: Celina Emery
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San Antonio, TX-Artpace San Antonio announces the unveiling of its seventh Semester Program public art project on the campus of Louis W. Fox Academic and Technical High School. The artwork is the result of a collaboration between San Antonio artist Cathy Cunningham and a group of tenth-grade Law Magnet Academy students. Together the artist, students, and their teacher, Maricela Lazarin, worked to give life to a new artwork for the Fox Tech campus meant to empower and inspire students with a passion and vision for social justice.
Students at Fox Tech who ascend the main staircases to the school's mezzanine-a community gathering space for the student body-are now greeted by People Power, a colorful, neon-illuminated artwork that reads, "Never doubt a group of concerned students can change the scales of justice." This vibrant work of art emerged from twelve weeks of thoughtful conversation shared by Cunningham, teacher, and students from the "Foundations of the American Legal System" class. Cunningham explains, "We had discussions on specific examples of art that raised legal issues of censorship and freedom of speech. Through majority vote, we made decisions on the type of work and message that the class wanted to express." Cunningham guided students to the materials she employs in her sculptural work, including neon and colored plastics, to give shape to that message. During the second part of the semester, the young artists joined Cunningham in her studio to observe how she bent the neon tubing for their piece and to participate in the construction of their design.
When initially planning the fall Semester Program, Cunningham had expressed interest in addressing public art via an academic subject outside of the art classroom, giving "non-art" students the opportunity to think about the different ways art relates to society. Teacher Maricela Lazarin jumped at the opportunity to engage her Academy students in a cross-disciplinary dialogue: "The creation of a work of art adds a new dimension to the teaching of law. More specifically, this project has opened a window allowing my students to see a correlation between art and law."
During a Public Art Panel at Artpace in mid-semester, students from Fox Tech presented the key elements of their idea to a panel made up of Artpace staff and artists. In describing the conceptual framework for the piece, class spokeswoman Leticia Ochoa explained their collaborative rationale: "We wanted to make something that other students would see in school and make them think about things they can do to change the world."
The project is part of a collection of collaborative works by students and local artists Justin Boyd, Daniel Guerrero, David Jurist, Juan Ramos, Ethel Shipton, and Gary Sweeney which are permanently installed on the Fox Tech campus as the result of previous Semester Programs with Artpace. Each semester, Artpace selects an artist to be "in residence" in a Fox Tech classroom. The program gives teens access to unique mentoring opportunities with professional artists-offering practical experience in their field of study, while encouraging creativity and producing long-term aesthetic enhancements for the communal spaces on their campus.
The students' public art project will be dedicated on Friday, December 14, 2007 at 9:30am with a presentation and unveiling on the 3rd Level Mezzanine of the Louis W. Fox Academic and Technical High School, 637 N. Main Avenue, San Antonio, TX 78205.
The public and media are welcome to attend. Please contact Celina Emery at 210.212.4900 or email@example.com to RSVP.
About the Program
The Fall 2007 Semester Program was underwritten by Dan Parman with support from the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes that a great nation deserves great art.
Artpace San Antonio serves as an advocate for contemporary art and as a catalyst for the creation of significant art projects. We seek to nurture emerging and established artists and to provide opportunities for inspiration, experimentation, and education. Our programs support the evolution of new ideas in contemporary art and cultivate diverse audiences while providing a forum for ongoing dialogue.
Artpace is located downtown at 445 North Main Avenue, between Savings and Martin streets, San Antonio, Texas. Free parking is available at 513 North Flores Street. Artpace is open to the public Wednesday through Sunday, 12-5 PM, Thursday, 12-8 PM, and by appointment. Admission is free.
Support for Artpace San Antonio is generously provided by the Linda Pace Foundation;
The Brown Foundation, Inc.; and the Kronkosky Charitable Foundation.
© 2007 Artpace San Antonio
445 North Main Avenue San Antonio TX 78205 t 210 212 4900 f 210 212 4990 www.artpace.org
© 2007 Artpace San Antonio