Contact: Thomas Hottman
Students from Roosevelt Elementary School enrolled in the 21st Century Community Learning Center after-school program toured an art exhibit that featured their own work at Sky Lakes Medical Center Thursday.
The exhibit, “What Makes You Happy,” has been in place since Dec. 3 and features artwork from students at various schools within the Klamath Falls City Schools district.
In August, 2016, Christie Riggins, founding director of the Favell Museum Community Art Program, asked her students in the after-school program to paint, “what makes you happy?,” and Thursday’s exhibit showcased their finished products.
While some painted pictures of their pets, food and toys, others illustrated events with their families such as playing football, traveling and eating ice cream.
Student art patron
In October, 2016, the Favell Museum Community Art Program was awarded a $6,000 grant from Sky Lakes Medical Center to help provide materials and art teachers to enable around 600 students to create ceramics, paintings and more, Sky Lakes Public Information Officer Tom Hottman said, also offering to host the exhibit.
When the group of 21 second- and third-grade students arrived at the hospital after school on Thursday, Hottman gave them a tour of the more open areas of the hospital, explaining the various pieces of artwork hanging on the walls and from the ceiling, including a woven metal sculpture listing the names of the people who have donated to Sky Lakes.
“Everyone should touch it,” he told the students. “What do you feel? What do you notice about the shape of it?”
As they made their way through the hospital, and up the stairs, the students also participated in a scavenger hunt and sought out birds nests, which they could see from the windows overlooking the meditation garden, ducks, a heron and busts.
Madelyn Chapman, 8, was eager to get to the third floor to see her artwork, stating, “this is so fun.”
During her after-school classes, Chapman painted a heart-shaped bowl which she later gave to her mother to show that she “liked her.”
Upon reaching the third floor, the students walked down the corridor that connects Sky Lakes Medical Center to the Marquis Plum Ridge nursing home and witnessed their artwork clipped to pieces of string hung along the wall.
“I never thought they’d hang my painting up on the wall,” CJ Harris, 8, said. “I like it.”
“From what I’ve heard,” Riggins said, “The hospital employees have really loved the art and it’s gratifying because patients from Plum Ridge either walk, hobble or sit in a wheelchair and see it, too.”
Hottman said the exhibit has been “very popular” as it’s in a corridor away from the patient care areas and frequented by staff who have been “lingering and appreciating” the student’s creations.
“The theme is ‘what makes you happy,’ and from a kid’s perspective it’s fun and they are personal reflections on their lives and what makes them happy,” he said.
Hottman credits Riggins for her work with the students, stating “she really understands the connection between learning and art and how one can help the other, and opening those creative pathways helps education in general.”
“This opportunity is pretty cool,” he said. “For a place where you only come when you’re sick, to be able to look around is great.”
The artwork will hang on the walls for eight weeks and then be replaced with paintings from other schools. The following display will feature artwork from students at Conger Elementary School.