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March 19, 2008 > A brilliant and beautiful beginning

A brilliant and beautiful beginning

By Arathi Satish

Students have worked hard to create artwork from ordinary to extraordinary. Practical or decorative, simple or intricate, even deceptively uncomplicated artwork reflects often complex thoughts of the artist. Emerging Brilliance and Beauty, the current art exhibit by the Fremont Unified School District (FUSD), gives local students an opportunity to display a reflection of their world. The exhibit includes a kindergarten - grade 12 visual arts display with over a thousand artworks from Fremont schools in a variety of mediums.

Alameda County Office of Education sponsors Art is Education month in March. Visual and performing arts programs and performances are held at many sites to highlight the importance of arts education. County Superintendent of Schools Sheila Jordon, a strong supporter of the arts, has lent her support to make the arts an important focus in education. Art teacher Susan Manbeian at Hopkins Junior High and coordinator of the event said, "The idea of a district-wide art show sprung from the desire to show the importance of all the arts in a well rounded education. This past year the district arts team took a proposal of a five-year arts plan before the board in an effort to include the arts (music, dance, drama and fine arts) at the elementary level. This is the sixth year of our district arts show and we have nearly every high school and junior high exhibiting work. We have some elementary as well."

Artwork of Fremont elementary, junior and senior high schools is currently displayed in the Fremont Unified School District Office. Included in the display are the efforts of advanced art students of Hopkins Junior High School who created seven sculptures for the show. \Manbeian said that the assignment was to create a piece of modern art that would impact its surroundings and make a statement. The seventh and eighth graders formed groups, developed themes, designs and color schemes which then resulted in the sculptures, many made from recycled doors.

The team of Kevin He, Lucy Chen, Josh Gu and Sophia Wang created "Lamination of the Cloverfield Monster." Kevin wrote that it is a mystical scene with a shadowed figure in the eye of a ferocious typhoon, ravaging cities and the land. This piece was inspired by Frank Stella's work with innovative shapes.

Calling themselves "painters," Sayoni Mukhopadhya, Manisha Marisetty, Zena Sutaria and Rashna Sutaria created a door in the style of Picasso. "After a lot of team work, planning, sketching, questions, fighting, very dirty clothes, and paint all over our hair, we were able to finish our door in the style of Picasso. We are the painters and we love to paint."

Megan Tsao, Yuette Wu, Ryan Nguyen, Coco Liu, Emily Lin, Kathy Lee and Lynn Huang created a study of Ubu Imperator by Max Ernst. It is a surreal piece that represents surprise.

Wan-Tong, Derrick, Nivetha,Tiffany and Samuel created "Street Lights." They explained, "Our masterpiece represents a teen's idea, bright and new for the future. The painting, in a way, shows our current thoughts and the way we are heading. Hopefully the way for us would be just like a piece of art: just our own."

Walls of all corridors on the ground floor display the varied beginning work of local talented students. Kindergarten students from Ms. Adams class at Mattos Elementary School have displayed two sets of pictures, entitled, "Freedom, Freedom, let it ring," of Rev. Martin Luther King and George Washington, "Our First President."

Students of Fremont junior high schools have submitted artwork in a variety of media. The Walters Jr. High School Art II project is an eye-catching display of 1,001 paper cranes. Students from the same school also display a colorful set of paper masks based on the work of Salvador Dali, Van Gogh, Georgia O'Keefee and other internationally acclaimed artists. Artwork displayed by Thornton Jr. High School students is innovative, creative and appropriately named Robot Clown, Disco Dancer, Party Girl, Pink Piggy, Super Banker, Evil Genius, etc.

The 7th and 8th graders of Mrs. Lefkort's Calligraphy class from Thornton Jr. High have submitted Alphabet Abstract Color Studies using the "Hard edge painting" style from the late 1950's during which California was the creative center of the movement. Students have incorporated graphic design, letter shape, art history, color theory, drafting and painting using pencil, tempera and paper.

Not to be outdone by the younger generation of artists, FUSD high school students have displayed remarkable creativity in their work. American High School students study of various artists, self portraits and digital images deserve special mention while Kennedy High School students offer excellent and striking sketches. Irvington High School art students have an impressive range of ceramics on display and Mission San Jose students are well represented as well. Students of digital imaging and design classes are also included in the show. Edie Christensen, art teacher at Mission San Jose High noted that the show is an excellent opportunity for students to display their work and for the community to recognize and appreciate their efforts.

A brilliant and beautiful beginning
March 1 - 31
Monday through Friday
7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Fremont Unified School District Education Center
4210 Technology Drive, Fremont
(510) 657-2350

Exhibit information: Susan Manbeian (510) 656-3500, Ext 38003

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