The Amherst PTA graciously sponsored TWO artists in residence! Segun Olorunfemi, a visual artist from Nigeria, was able to come and work with the entire 7th grade to create beautiful linoleum prints. In just three days of work, each student was able to carve a linoleum plate, create a finished linoleum print to take home and create a print to donate to a collaborative mural that will remain at AMS.
The next week, Segun returned to work with all of 8th grade to create colorful batik paintings. Again, in only three days, students were able to go through the batik process, sketch, apply wax and colorful inks, remove the wax and add final details using Sharpie. Each student created a 13" x 17" pieces to take home, and in their spare time also worked on a larger collaborative piece that will remain at AMS.
On Friday, January 19th, Theo Martey, a percussionist from Accra Ghana, came to the school and held an assembly for grade 5 and 6 students. He then taught an after-school workshop where he spoke about drumming in African culture and students were able to learn and practice two rhythms on the African drums Theo brought with him.
Both of these artist in residence opportunities culminated in a celebration at AMS in the evening of the 19th from 6:00-7:30 where students invited their family members to come and celebrate the work that they had done. The event was well attended and many students from grades 5-8 were in attendance as well as teachers and administrators from
AMS, members of the Amherst community and Amherst School Board. The lobby and cafeteria were temporarily turned into and art gallery showcasing the colorful and creative work of AMS students. A highlight of the evening was the African drumming performance by Theo Martey and the AMS students who had attended the after-school workshop. They performed two rhythms and the entire audience was singing and clapping along!