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By Marni Walsh
In commemoration of Canada 150, the Ministry of Education gifted funds to Centre Dufferin High School which students have put to good use creating functional art that brings both beauty and comfort to the school. They took the opportunity to paint chairs reflecting their community and Canada's history, resulting in beautiful works of art for all to enjoy.
“Many people think of us as a northern, rural school,” says Principal Wendy McIntosh. “So we thought, what is more quintessential northern Ontario than Muskoka chairs?”
We asked the students, “If someone was to walk into our school, what do you want them to know about our community, our province, our country, and how would you represent that in a painting?” After that, Ms. McIntosh says, “It evolved into a fantastic day where we tarped over the entire café and students came and went all day to help paint 13 Muskoka chairs.”
“We have a very active group of about 150 students, lead by Orlando Bowen and Jermaine Frazer, called ‘One Voice, One Team, One Community' and they were the engine behind our paint project,” says the Principal.
“The tech students assembled the chairs and the art classes primed them,” she said. “One Voice students prepped the cafe, made many designs and of course painted on the paint day. Other groups, like Student Council, Social Equity, and FNMI, designed and painted a chair, and certain classes also decided they wanted to have a voice via a chair.”
Senior art students at the school were assigned to each chair to help with colour mixing, and design execution. “Of course none of this would happen without the amazing teachers, custodians and secretaries,” says Ms. McIntosh. “You just need to suggest a germ of an idea and the staff here make it happen.”
During the winter, the chairs can be seen scattered around the school for the students to enjoy, but when the weather warms up, they will go out into the school courtyard.
A wide range of themes are artistically interpreted on the bodies of the chairs including national history, diversity and inclusiveness, performance art, military service, indigenous teachings, community service, and compassion. Ms. McIntosh, very proud of the students, says, “The chairs are beautiful and all reflect a positive message about our school, community and country.”
Post date: 2017-11-27 16:01:37
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