Morgan Elementary will hold its first annual Art Festival, “Journey of Imagination, Dream, Believe, Inspire,” on April 25 from 6:30-9 p.m. at the school.
The event is the culmination of a year of creativity for the students. It is open to the community and will showcase artwork produced by the children throughout the school year.
Notable guest artists from across the state will also have demonstrations for the children, provide hands-on activities, and offer some of their work for sale to the public.
The celebration was kicked off last week with an assembly presented by award winning couple, Mark and Caralyn Buehner. Mark is the illustrator of many children’s picture books like, “My Monster Mama Loves Me So.” His work has garnered awards from the Society of Illustrators, as well as numerous state and national awards. He has also been featured on “Reading Rainbow” and “Storytime” on PBS.
It was Mark who encouraged Caralyn to write, and together they have collaborated on numerous books including “Snowmen at Night.” Their books have been honored with two Utah Children’s Choice Awards, a CBC Children’s Choice Award, a Parent’s Choice Award, an ALA Notable Book designation, a Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor Award, and an Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Award. They have also been on the NY Times Bestseller list.
The couple enthralled the children as they read their stories and showed them how a book was made, from the first ideas and rough drafts, to the final illustrations and publication.
Artists performing that night include forensic sculptor, Daniel Fairbanks. Fairbanks has delighted audiences by uniquely combining science and art in his presentation, “Bringing Ancient People Back to Life.” Based on findings of an excavation site in Peru, Fairbanks will sculpt a Peruvian princess while the children watch and learn about ancient life in Peru.
Russian impressionist Ann Marie Oborn will be on hand painting a portrait of a live model. Oborn is well known for her award winning oil paintings of landscapes, still life paintings and vibrant portraits. She is also an accomplished illustrator and recently completed 14 illustrations for Geraldine Edward’s book, “The Daffodil Principle.”
Woodcut printer Sally Rydalch uses individually carved wood blocks for relief printing and will be helping the children print a life-sized elephant. The print was originally created for Hogle Zoo and is entitled “The Elephant in the Room.” The children will help roll on the ink and print this pachyderm by linking arms and shuffling, jumping and dancing across the surface.
John Pincock, local ceramicist and high school teacher, will have his potter’s wheel on hand throwing pots for observers, while other accomplished local artists, Rob Colvin, Amy Everhart, Ryan Skidmore and Ginny Tilby will also be displaying their work and painting in house. Additionally, Holly Higley and Brayden Larson from Morgan High School will present that night.
“A Treasure Chest of Rare Books” sponsored by the Book Arts Program from the J. Willard Marriott Library at University of Utah will cover the history of books with a display including books dating up to 3,000 years old. From jade tablets and luminaries to modern tablets, visitors will be able to see and handle a real treasure chest of wonders.
This evening of artistic celebration was the brainchild of local artist, Marilyn Bambrough, who also serves as the art specialist for Morgan Elementary School. Bambrough wanted to celebrate the artistic accomplishments of the children through the year. She feels exposing children to this wonderful form of expression inspires and develops the creative problem solver in each of them.
Bambrough’s work will also be on display that evening.
Bambrough is the recipient of “The Business of Art” award sponsored by Zion’s Bank and Dixie College. Bambrough was able to provide art supplies and purchase a press and drying racks for the school with the award. It has also provided the means to sponsor the Art Festival.
Throughout the evening, children will also sing, play piano and violin and dance under the direction of Morgan Elementary Music Specialist Mickaela Moser and the Morgan Academy of Dance.