PUBLISHED: 10:44 AM on Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Photo: Gustavus students create a mural masterpiece
The Gustavus School Gym has a new mural stretching across its face and rounding the corner to the entry door. This incredible collaborative art project was created by the K-12 students thanks to Sarah Conarro, who just completed a four-week residency at Gustavus School with Artists in Schools, a program of the Alaska State Council on the Arts. Gustavus teacher Ellie Sharman coordinated the project. The colorful mural uses 16 full sheets of marine plywood painted with multiple layers of acrylic mural paints. Fifty students helped to paint the mural. They met in four age groups for one hour daily, deciding cooperatively at every step what to try, what to continue, which direction to take. Students painted on every board, usually multiple times, as the layers took on form. The mural design includes mountains, water, moose, fox, people, birds, salmon, the Alaska flag, flowers, stars, moon, sun, trees and houses. A river runs through it all. The Gustavus community celebrated the mural's completion with a dedication ceremony on May 9.

photo courtesy of Gustavus School