Luther Burbank Center for the Arts is proud to showcase artwork from students around the county. The current exhibit features works from Aida Herrera-Keehn’s kindergarten students at Cali Calmecac Language Academy.
The project featured in this exhibit arose from questions kindergartners posed during the 2016 election. Using the book, “The Colors of Us” written and illustrated by Karen Kath, Maestra Aida explored art and community with her students. The story provided an opportunity for students to make comparisons about skin color as described in the book and to recognize that all colors are beautiful.
The multi-layered project was an exploration in color and friendship. First, Maestra Aida read the book to her students. Then for the art project, students were given tempera paints with which to mix a color that matched their skin’s tone. Once students had mixed their own skin color, pairs of students shared colors so that their self-portraits included two different tones.
“This is where the magic happened,” said Maestra Aida, as students appreciated all the different color tones. “They found that a friend is a friend, regardless of skin color.” Photographs of the students who shared paint colors are included with each piece.
To further deepen the lesson, students studied proportion as a basis for placing eyes, nose and mouth on their faces. They watched a brief video on Matisse’s collage work which inspired the 3D clothing for their portraits.
The final piece was for students to explore the kind of community they would like live in. They represented their thoughts in the background of their pieces using sharpies and watercolors.
Luther Burbank Center for the Arts is proud of the work these young artists created and thank them and their teacher for the opportunity to celebrate their success. “The arts provide a natural, creative, unbiased opportunity to have what could otherwise be difficult conversations,” says Tracy Sawyer. “This project is a wonderful lesson in art and community.”
We hope you will enjoy the work created by this group of fabulous young artists.