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Looking Back and Lunging Forward
Kate Howard

As summer '18 winds down and the school year rapidly approaches, it seems the perfect time to reflect on a couple of outstanding projects completed last spring and to get our community excited about the possibility that lies ahead in the visual arts.

In May, our 8th grade students, under the guidance and expertise of art educator Hilary Harnischfeger, created and shared two outstanding projects with our community. For the "Altoid You About..." project, students transformed an Altoid mint box into an art historical teaching tool.  After selecting and researching a specific artist students worked with mixed materials to create miniature artworks in the style of their artist within the container itself. For the second design challenge project, 8th grade artists worked with a range of 3D materials including cardboard, wire, plaster, gauze, Alginate, hydrostone, wood and aluminum to engineer original lamps.  The culminating exhibition was curated and installed in the Black Box Theater by the artists themselves. 

While the 8s displayed their artworks on the inside of the BBT, our Fourth graders celebrated the completion of their abstract paintings displaying them also in the Black Box Theater but on the wall facing outward, toward Tenth Avenue.   These works were the culmination of a unit exploring mark making and abstraction during which students learned about color schemes and painting techniques. While making their pieces, students were asked to reflect by asking themselves the following: How will you know when your work is finished? What part of your work could be improved? These paintings were made using tempera paint on stretched canvas. Ask some fourth graders all about their “cuadros abstractos” or  “抽象画." 

Sampling from the "Altoid You About..." collection. 

Joey M. works with M.C. Escher for his box. 

8th Grade artist engineers original lamp.

8th Grade Lamps

8s (now 9s!) with Ms. Harnischfeger celebrating their installation!

Fourth grade abstract paintings photographed from Tenth Avenue. 

Samantha G.

Max Z. 

Matthew H. 



  • 4th Grade
  • 8th Grade
  • Abstract Painting
  • Altoids You About...
  • Art & Design
  • Artist lamps
  • Arts