The Growing Up Boulder "public art action group" was created after the overwhelming enthusiasm for the arts exhibited by youth at the GUB Kickoff Celebration in October 2009. While the Kickoff event offered many wonderful workshops, the most popular workshops taught graffiti art and break dancing. Based on this enthusiasm, we formed the public art action group and have started working on projects with middle-school students.
The first project for the GUB Public Art Action Group is a banner project that has been planned by a group of middle-school students from the I Have a Dream organization and also by middle school students from GUB’s original Kickoff planning committee. An adult group of volunteers, IHAD and GUB coordinators, and CYE interns support the students in their work. The students decided to design and paint 2’ by 9’ canvas banners on which they will express their views about growing up in Boulder. When completed, the banners will be displayed for a night at the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art (May 5) and in the teen area of the Boulder Creek Festival (May 29-May 31). We hope to display them at local schools as well.
A group of partner organizations and youth have come together to plan a longer-term project for middle-school students: a ceramic mural for a new underpass on the Goose Creek Trail near 30th Street and Mapleton. This inclusive project, which will bring together low-income children, children with disabilities, and the larger Boulder middle-school population, will start in the fall of 2010 (contingent upon funding). This project will focus on building a sense of community ownership for youth who live near 30th Street, where it will be built. It will also bring together a diverse group of youth who might not otherwise spend time together.
Since art is a wonderful medium for expression of all ages, we plan to expand the public art action group to older (teens) and younger (elementary and preschool) ages sometime in the near future.