Picking Up Their Own Paintbrushes

 

For Christina Brandt, who teaches art in Lower and Middle School, art is a way to communicate her emotions, honor her mother and capture both the “decay in her [mother’s] brain as well as some things to remember her as she was before.”

Brandt’s mother, in the final stages of Alzheimer’s Disease, cannot recognize her husband, daughter or grandchildren.  Though her mother has a degree in finance, used to do crossword puzzles and used to enjoy playing golf, she has gradually regressed in age for the past 10 years or more.

Brandt’s piece, which uses hot glue, crayon, watercolor, pen, ink and collage, is just one of many faculty creations that will be on display at the faculty art exhibit at Greenhill until March 10. The exhibit will also display work from Hockaday teachers Kevin Brady, Dee Mayes, Juliette McCullough, Glenys Quick, Susan Sanders and Janet Yoshii-Buenger.

All faculty members in the Hockaday art department participate in this event, titled “Artist as Teacher, Teacher as Artist,” which displays the talent of Dallas art teachers.  This is the second year of the annual faculty art exhibit, which was held last year at the Episcopal School of Dallas.

“The exhibit is a wonderful way to display my own artwork and see the work of my peers,” Brandt says.

“All the art teachers working at all these schools are artists in their own right,” says Hockaday Studio Art teacher Juliette McCullough. “It’s an opportunity for them to show what they’re doing when they’re not in the classroom.”

Visual Arts Chair, Susan Sanders, agrees. “The exhibition is a very nice way for the participants to get to celebrate each others’ accomplishments.  It is also rewarding to be recognized by our school communities,” she says.

From start to finish, the entire process of the art exhibit takes about six months.  In September, the teachers send in their “Artist Acceptance Form,” and by March, they are picking up their works from the exhibit to take back home.  During those six months, each art teacher works on a piece of art —a sculpture, a clay pot, a painting, a drawing; there are no restrictions.

When the time of the exhibition rolls around in February, the artists’ friends, students, parents, and coworkers come to see the art, says McCullough. Hockaday’s Jeanne P. Whitman was spotted at the art exhibition last year at ESD.

Although there are no prizes awarded for the artwork, McCullough believes that the greatest benefit of the exhibit is simply having “fun [doing] something where we’re just being artists.”

According to McCullough, many of the art teachers from various schools “already know each other from [their] exhibitionist experience outside.”  However, she believes that this art exhibit is “a way for us to come together professionally, which is really nice.”

The exhibit displays a variety of pieces from clay bottles to mixed media on paper.  The art teachers welcome anyone who would like to see their artwork, which will be available to view from Feb. 7 through March 10.

-Erika

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