Created by Youth in Arts and Walker Rezaian’s family to celebrate Walker’s life and love for the arts, the Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Kindergarten Arts Program combines a visual arts residency for all Kindergarten classes in selected sites with teacher and parent trainings, a gallery exhibit of student work, and a community-wide celebration of friendship and young artists.
Schools are selected for the program through an application process each Spring, open to all Title I schools in Marin County. Selected sites receive a comprehensive program valued at $12,000, including:
See our blog for stories and photos from past recipient schools!
Support Kindergarten Arts through the Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Program: DONATE NOW and mark your gift is In Honor of Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts.
Youth in Arts is proud to announce the fourth year of the Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Fund to celebrate the life of five-year-old Walker Rezaian. To honor Walker’s love of the arts, we worked with his family to create a kindergarten visual arts program focused on the theme of friendship. The program combines a visual arts residency with teacher professional development, parent training, a gallery exhibit of student work, and a community-wide celebration of friendship and kindergarten artists.
We encourage you to visit the Imagining Friendship Gallery exhibit April 8 – May 27 at Youth in Arts so you can get a sense of the depth of the program.
If you are interested in this program for your kindergarteners, please complete the online application and submit it to Youth in Arts by May 18, 2016.
The Selected School will receive a Youth in Arts visual arts program valued at $12,000. The Program includes:
Title 1 School in Marin County (Kindergarten classrooms)
May 18, 2016 Deadline to submit application
June 21, 2016 Announcement of selection made in a public event, on the YIA blog and by e-blast, and selected school will be personally notified.
Fall 2016 Kindergarten Creative HeArts Program Commences
Spring 2017 Gallery Exhibit of student work, and community-wide celebration
How to submit:
Online here feel free to email for additional information: firstname.lastname@example.org
Students have been working with Mentor Artist Suzanne Joyal, learning to use drawing pencils, black china markers, colored pencils, and even Sharpies. They have been working on showing and telling more about themselves through their pictures, and on customizing their Beautiful New Art Journals. Thank you RileyStreet yet again for your help in getting the best supplies to our kids.
WALKER REZAIAN CREATIVE HEARTS AT LOMA VERDE
Novato School Celebrates Friendship with Arts Program
Youth in Arts will open the first annual Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Fund exhibit, on Friday, April 11, at YIA Gallery on C Street in downtown San Rafael. Entitled “Imagining Friendship,” the exhibit will feature work by kindergarteners from Loma Verde Elementary School in Novato who have been exploring friendship through visual art as part of the Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Kindergarten Arts Program, celebrating 5-year-old Walker Rezaian’s life and love for the arts.
YIA Gallery is the only art gallery in the Bay Area, and one of only a few in the nation, dedicated to exhibiting children’s art. “Imagining Friendship” will feature children’s drawings, paintings and sculpture displayed on, around and inside large cardboard structures that visitors of all ages can explore from outside and within. Young visitors can crawl through cardboard tunnels and caves and even stand inside a nine-foot periscope to view the gallery. The interactive exhibit will run through May 30, 2014, and admission is free.
Loma Verde School was selected as the first recipient of the Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Kindergarten Arts Program through a competitive application process. The program’s curriculum focuses on the theme of “Friendship,” an appropriate tribute to Walker, who touched so many lives in his Mill Valley community with his loving and outgoing personality. Youth in Arts developed the program in collaboration with Walker’s family.
For three months Youth in Arts Director of Artists in Schools Suzanne Joyal has been coming to Loma Verde kindergarten classrooms to teach visual art lessons around ideas like “Sharing” “Empathy” “Envisioning” and “Appreciating Differences.” At the same time as the children have been exploring these powerful ideas through their creativity, they have been learning basic fundamentals in line, color and form. Teachers and parents also received special trainings from Youth in Arts.
Principal Eileen Smith, reflected on the program, “The impact of arts on learning cannot necessarily be measured by a standardized test, however the personal and cognitive development of the kindergarten students was greatly increased through the art projects they were involved in this year at Loma Verde. Our students benefited immensely through the generous funding of the Walker Program and Youth in Arts. Students explored friendship through the patterns of playground adventures. The kinder students were able to express themselves in a nonverbal form increasing the cognitive processes used in geometry and furthering their personal development in learning about the patterns of friendship. Watching the students express their thoughts and feelings through art was a beautiful experience and Loma Verde is grateful that our students had this opportunity.’
Joyal described the process as joyful, “I was delighted by how willing the children were to take a risk. I loved how unique every child’s work was. They were so willing to express themselves in their own way. After lessons, teachers would sometimes express that a child was having difficulty and the only way they could share their emotions was through the artistic process. I couldn’t tell which child it was since they all responded so positively to the art.”
Loma Verde serves a diverse student population, including a significant percentage of students from low-income families. Says Principal Eileen Smith, “We have never had funds available to support a formal visual arts program such as this,” adding that the program helped English Language Learners and economically disadvantaged students “express themselves more deeply and feel more an integral part of our school community.”
At the end of the residency Joyal created individualized miniature works of art to give to each of the students. She explained, “The entire school, teachers, parents, kids gave me so much, tried so hard and came to each class with a positive attitude, I felt I wanted to give a going away present.”
Loma Verde Kindergarten Teacher Beth Kraft said, “Suzanne makes art accessible to all students by creating a very safe and accepting place for them to be unique in their expression of art and creativity.”
Youth in Arts Executive Director Miko Lee has announced that applications are open for the 2014-15 Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Kindergarten Arts Program. “We are very honored to continue this program,” said Lee. “Walker’s family was directly involved in designing the program, and it was important to all of us that we create something with a lasting impact. It’s not just something for these children in their kindergarten year. It’s setting them on the path towards always having the arts in their lives, and having that supported by their teachers and families.”
Interested Title I schools in Marin County should apply by May 17. Apply here.
The Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Fund is a project of the Walker Rezaian Memorial Fund. Youth in Arts is a nonprofit established in 1970. The leading arts education nonprofit in the North Bay, Youth in Arts offers students experiences and instruction in the visual and performing arts, and enriches the community with cultural events.
Loma Verde Elementary School in Novato will receive visual arts instruction from Youth in Arts Mentor Artists for all kindergarten students, along with special trainings for parents and teachers and a culminating YIA Gallery exhibit, through the generosity of the Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Fund.
The program celebrates the life and love for the arts of five-year-old Walker Rezaian. Visual arts lessons at Loma Verde will focus on the theme of “Friendship,” an appropriate tribute to Walker, who touched so many lives in his Mill Valley community with his loving and outgoing personality. Youth in Arts has worked closely with Walker’s family in designing the program and selecting Loma Verde as the 2013-14 recipient.
Principal Eileen Smith says Loma Verde parents have greeted this opportunity “with great enthusiasm—they are highly motivated to facilitate this program.” The school has not had funding for a formal visual arts program in the past, and Smith says they anticipate a very positive impact on their students. The school serves a diverse population of children, many of whom are English Language Learners from economically disadvantaged families.
The Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Fund is a project of the Walker Rezaian Memorial Fund. For more information, please contact Miko Lee or leave a comment here.
The Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Fund was established to celebrate the life of five-year-old Walker Rezaian. To honor Walker’s love of the arts, Youth in Arts worked with his family to create a kindergarten visual arts program focused on the theme of friendship. The program combines a visual arts residency with teacher professional development, parent training, a gallery exhibit of student work, and a community-wide celebration of friendship and kindergarten artists.
If you are interested in this program for your kindergarteners, please complete the attached application and submit it to Youth in Arts by May 18, 2015.
The Selected School will receive a Youth in Arts visual arts program valued at $10,000. The Program includes:
Title 1 School in Marin County (Kindergarten classrooms)
May 18, 2015: Deadline to submit application
June 12, 2015: Announcement of selection made at YIA Gallery during 2nd Fridays Art Walk Downtown, on the YIA blog and via e-blast (selected school will also be personally notified).
Fall 2015: Kindergarten Creative HeArts Program Commences
Spring 2016: Gallery Exhibit of student work, and community-wide celebration
How to submit:
Miko Lee, Executive Director
Youth in Arts
917 C Street
San Rafael, CA 94901
Friends come in all shapes and sizes!
“Imagining Friendship” is at the YIA Gallery in San Rafael through May 24. The show features the colorful self portraits by kindergarteners and first graders at Laurel Dell Elementary School. The work was part of a residency this Fall with Youth in Arts’ mentor artists Suzanne Joyal and Cathy Bowman.
The Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts exhibition is now in its fifth year. The show celebrates the life of 5-year-old Walker Rezaian and his love of the arts. The show is part of a program funded by the Rezaian family.
“This is an exciting show that celebrates friendship in all its forms,” said Youth in Arts’ Executive Director Miko Lee. “The exhibition also features a wonderful cardboard for exploring. The exhibit shows families that art can be made from anything.”
As a backdrop for the show, Joyal and Bowman built a kid-sized, interactive cardboard world with tunnels to crawl through and doors to open. There are windows to look in and out of and a cardboard word game to encourage visitors to read and write. The show also features a giant word tower made from cardboard boxes inspired by the work of artist Corita Kent. The cardboard was generously donated by Sunrise Home.
Youth in Arts is also excited to announce the opening of its new ART LAB, housed in the YIA store. The ART LAB is open during regular Youth in Arts’ hours, Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Youth in Arts is excited to announce the opening of our new ART LAB at the YIA Gallery.
Located in the gallery’s store, the ART LAB is open during regular Youth in Arts hours – Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., and until 8pm during Downtown San Rafael’s 2nd Friday Art Walks. It’s free and open to the public for art-making activities linked to YIA exhibitions.
“In keeping with our mission of providing arts access to all learners, Youth in Arts is opening its doors to the community to explore its creativity,” said Miko Lee, executive director of Youth in Arts. “We’re providing free, hands-on art projects for all ages.”
Children will enjoy kid-sized tables where they can make art and explore materials. Each exhibition will also feature the artwork of one of Youth in Arts’ Mentor Artists. All artwork on view in the space will be for sale, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting Youth in Arts.
Suzanne Joyal’s work is currently featured and coincides with Imagining Friendship the Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts exhibition of self portraits by kindergarteners and first graders from Laurel Dell Elementary School in San Rafael. The colorful paintings were created during their Fall residency with Youth in Arts. As part of the exhibit, Youth in Arts’ staff have created a kid-sized interactive cardboard world with doors, tunnels and windows for exploring.
Both children and adults are welcome, but we kindly ask that all children be accompanied and supervised by their grownups.
Please come and visit us soon. Just look for our bright red wall!
Visit the YIA Gallery to explore a world inspired by kindergarteners’ creativity! Experience wonderful self portraits, and cardboard creations from the 2018-2019 Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Kindergarten Arts Program at Laurel Dell elementary school in San Rafael. Find out how these young artists explored ideas about friendship and emotion through the visual arts. Led by mentor artists Cathy Bowman & Suzanne Joyal.Imagining Friendship Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Kindergarten Art Exhibition YIA Gallery 917 C Street, San Rafael April 12–May 24, 2019 General Hours: Monday–Friday; 11am–4pm Opening Reception: Friday, April 12; 5–8pm 2nd Friday Art Walk: Friday, May 10; 5–8pm
The Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Kindergarten Arts Program is supported by the Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Fund celebrating Walker’s life, love of art and friendly personality. Click here for more information.
Thank you to our very generous supporters: