Berrendo Middle School’s winter art show celebrates its fifth year
By Christina Stock
The fifth annual HeART of Winter Language Arts Extravaganza takes place at Berrendo Middle School, 800 Marion Richards Road, Nov. 19 from 5 to 6:30 p.m.
The art show is earlier this year and on a different day — on a Tuesday. Organizer and creator of the event, BMS art teacher, Jeanette Main explained the change. “I know December is going to be super-busy and Thanksgiving comes late this year,” she said. “I didn’t want to do it after Christmas because then I have a group of new kids, and I wanted it for these kids in this semester.”
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The art show offers a look into the creativity of the students who take it very seriously, especially because it is a juried art show and open to the public who get to choose their favorite art as well.
Asked about the talent of this year’s semester, Main said, “They are wonderful. Yes, you always have what I call ‘born-with-it’ students, they just pick up a pencil and go, and you say, ‘Wow, I wish I can say I taught you that.’ There are some great kids and wonderful creativity — even today, we did finger puppets of all things and some of the things these kids came up with were just awesome. I told them, you can do Halloween theme, so I am expecting Halloween stuff, but oh no, they did bacon and eggs and pancakes and breakfast-themed foods on their fingers. I would have never thought of that. We have a lot of creativity out there.
“Creativity helps so much with life in general, and art is in everything we do. That’s what I try to get across to the students. Even the shape of our chair is art in some way. Somebody had to design it, somebody had to develop it. It is a technical art, but it’s an art. My goal is to get the kids to see and have an appreciation in general for art,” Main said.
Asked about the details and theme this year, Main said, “What we’re doing is a Dia de los Muertos theme. We started some projects, one of my new favorite projects are alebrijes, the little spirit animals or spirit guide. So, when you watch the movie “Coco,” you can watch the progression what we did with our art projects. They’ll have alebrijes with the spirit guides from the eighth-graders. Our seventh-graders are doing a city with cardboard and our sixth-graders are doing the sugar skulls, the calaveras. On top of that, there will be a glow gallery. We are going to use black light to light up all of it. When you watch the movie ‘Coco,’ you see all the fluorescent bright colors and that’s what we are going for.”
Each year, Main finds something new and interesting for the children and the audience to see.
“We are keeping art fresh and letting them see that you can take a simple project and make it not necessarily bigger, but change it and everybody will have a totally different idea of that simple thing. It’s just fun for them to see that they can open their eyes to different ideas,” Main said.
One of the children’s and the audiences’ favorite events during the show is the teacher challenge, where the children judge their teacher during the show. At press-time, Main was still working on the challenge. “We talked about a portrait challenge,” she said. “I’ve got to ask my principal first, if I can get a picture of her. Everybody (every teacher) has to do a version of her as a portrait. It can be a cartoon, real, it could be sketch, I’m going to see if I can do that.
They’ve all been super-supportive — our administration has been great. They’ve always backed us when we need something,” Main said.
Asked about her future plans, Main said, “Just keeping it fresh, the more people we can get in there to see what the students are doing, the better. It’s one of the rare occasions where parents, family, friends can come and see what the kids can do. My dream is to just keep it going and keep those students interested in art for life.”
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