The Glasgow Courier - Serving Proudly As The Voice Of Valley County Since 1913

By A.J. Etherington
The Courier 

Livening Up the Place

Middle School Walls Get Makeover

 

A.J. Etherington / The Courier

From left to right: Addison Young, Rebecca Garcia, Ashton Potter, Alaina Cox, Will Loran, Daley Aune pose in front of one of the murals they helped paint in Mr. Barstad's classroom.

The Glasgow Middle School walls are a lot brighter and far more colorful than the white cinder block paint job they had before. That is thanks to Mrs. Libby Weber's exploratory art classes who painted seven large murals on the walls throughout the school.

According to Mrs. Weber, the idea got its start when Principal Mike Zoanni and other teachers decided that the white walls needed some paint jobs to brighten the halls and relax the students. Weber then put the task to her just over 70 art students to research, design, collaborate and paint the larger than life paintings.

The project was originally supposed to last a few weeks, but ended up consuming nearly three months of instruction for the participating students. As GMS student Briah Garfield explained it, the classes, which divided out across the various murals, started off, "with research and looking at other school murals."

She said at first the idea of painting such a large scale project was daunting but that she found it manageable working as a group alongside other students. Garfield played a role in painting the "Music" mural, featuring the word and various geometric shapes stitched together across the music room walls.

Zevin Kummerfeldt also worked on the music room murals and he was not so much daunted as he was excited to paint the school walls. "It was kind of exciting, because we got to paint something that is going to be there a long time." He also added that his favorite part was the shapes. "I liked the zentangle, where you have a lot of different shapes together." Zentangles are an art word referring to a method of drawing that is intended to relax the drawer by repeating patterns and lines across a piece of work.

A.J. Etherington / The Courier

Pictured left to right: Alex Strope, Dylan Hlad, Teagan Peterson, Riley Overvold, Zevin Kummerfeldt, Lex Fairclough, Jack Kolstad, Briah Garfield, Jack Cornwell, Michael Hoyer, Torrance Braaten and Hannah Nix. Top left, left to right: Chrissy Watterson, Alyssa Allen, Laken Moran, Addison Zoanni, Ashlee Meland, Samantha Tryan, Levi Overvold, Floyd Sells and Kolby Simmons.

A separate student who participated, Chrissy Watterson, explained her struggles in overcoming the task. For her, the hardest part was, "staying in the lines," she joked before adding that it was actually, "Trying to figure out the design and the swirls of the painting." She helped paint the "Find the Good" mural that features a lot of rounded, colorful shapes concealing various objects related to the school, the students and education.

Watterson says she really enjoys the art class at the middle school. "It helps me calm down from stress," she said. "I have art last period and it is nice to listen to music and just draw."

Harley Edwards, who also helped tackle the project as well as echoed that sentiment saying, "It's nice to take all my stress and ball it up and turn it into something magical." She was also one of thos students who started out concerned about the idea of making something large and permanent on the walls. "I thought it would have been harder than it was, but it's exciting that this will be there for future generations to see."

The best part for Mrs. Weber is that the students have some color in their lives, that the walls are not just the "institutionalized" white walls of a commercial building but that they are unique, colorful and relaxing for students. "It's just a way to add some interesting colors to the walls," she said.

 

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