We are excited to announce that architect Shirl Buss, who has helped develop Youth in Arts’ Architects in Schools program for elementary school children in Marin, has won the 2019 Pamela Levine award!
The Pamela Levine Arts Education Leadership Award was presented at the opening of the Inspire art exhibit at the YIA Gallery. Now in its fifth year, the Inspire exhibit showcases the personal work of teaching artists that was inspired by their work with students. Visual Arts Director Suzanne Joyal presented the award to Shirl on behalf of the Youth in Arts board and staff. The award is given to individuals for exceptional accomplishments in arts education in memory of Youth in Arts’ former Executive Director Pamela Levine.
“I have had the pleasure of working with Shirl for the past four years, when she began teaching architecture at Laurel Dell. I have learned so much from her,” Suzanne said in an address to Shirl. “She clearly embodies Youth in Arts’ goals for learners: Creativity, Compassion and Confidence through arts learning. It is clear to all who work with you, Shirl, that you love what you do, and you love your students.” Suzanne continued. “The respect you have for creatives of all sizes is clear in every interaction you have with people.”
Shirl is a designer, planner and educator whose work focuses on children, youth and the built environment. She holds a masters in Early Childhood Development and an M.Arch and Ph.D from the UCLA Graduate School of Architecture and Urban Planning. Shirl is the Y-PLAN Elementary Director at the Center for Cities + Schools at UC Berkeley. At Laurel Dell Elementary School in San Rafael, she is a key member of a team of Youth in Arts Mentor Artists teaching design and build skills to 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders.
More than 60 people turned out for the celebration, many of them friends and colleagues who work with Buss in the East Bay. Also in attendance was Youth in Arts Executive Director Kristen Jacobson and Pepe Gonzalez, principal of Laurel Dell and Short elementary schools.
“If you guys saw the artwork that these kids have created – 3 Dimensional, to scale, not to scale … it’s everything that the Common Core was supposed to be,” Pepe said. “These kids are living it and breathing it and doing it every day.”
Suzanne also read comments from Laurel Dell students who have studied with Shirl:
“Dear Ms. Buss, you taught me and my class how to speak in public, also how to be a creative scholar. You gave me the opportunity to think about my future chances,” wrote one student.
Another wrote: “Dear Ms. Buss, you taught me to never give up. You make me happy.”
Some students talked about how much Ms.Buss inspired them when they made model tree houses.
“Dear Ms. Buss, thank you for teaching me to be creative and bringing my imagination to another level,” one student wrote. “You are like a bird in the sky teaching kids to use their imagination.”
The Inspire exhibit is on display through Jan. 17 at the YIA Gallery, located at 917 C St. in the beautiful Downtown San Rafael Arts District. Regular gallery hours are Monday through Friday, 11 am. to 4 p.m. The Art Lab is always open when we are: children and grown-ups can come in and make art for free.
Her background as an elementary school literacy specialist, and museum educator at renowned institutions such as the Jewish Museum of Contemporary Art and SFMOMA, make Suzanne Reich Gibson a seamless fit for the Youth in Arts board. We were lucky enough to meet her at one of our Lights On Tours this spring, where her thoughtful questions highlighted her passion for arts education. “I had heard about the wonderful work that Youth in Arts does in Marin schools, particularly working with students with special needs,” she explains, “I was inspired as well by the Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Kindergarten Arts Program, which reaches students at the start of their elementary school years and, now, empowers them with arts skills throughout their elementary school years. I came for a visit to YIA’s C Street gallery and was awed by the students’ creativity and voices on display there.”
Suzanne grew up with arts as a centerpiece in her life, “I was fortunate to have all sorts arts at the core of my childhood, both in and out of school,” she shares, “I also had grandparents who made art of their own and were determined to take us to museums and concerts from an early age.” In her adult life she has found time for art-making as part of her museum work, where she says, “art-making is very much a way of looking at and appreciating the art on display.” And she is continuing her own arts education through a recent mono-printing class, “which was very accessible and refreshing – I will definitely do more!”
Prior to settling with her family in Mill Valley, Suzanne lived in various locations in Europe and learned some valuable life lessons, “I’ve lived in some faraway places – the north of Norway and Warsaw, Poland. There’s a lot to learn by being the ‘outsider’ about who makes a community and the richness of many cultures living together.”
Thank you, Suzanne. We look forward to learning more from you as part of the YIA community!
More than eighty community leaders, educators, students, and Youth in Arts supporters came out to celebrate Arts in Education Month at the YIA Gallery last Friday, March 8th. Youth in Arts and the Marin County Office of Education co-hosted the event, which was centered around introducing attendees to the 2018-2019 Marin Arts Education Plan. There was lots of positive feedback, and seemed to be buzz building around the movement in Marin to improve arts access for ALL learners.
Visitors were also able to enjoy the wonderful artwork from our RISING STARS High School art exhibition, on view through March 29th. The “Best Of” show and category winners (drawing, mixed media, painting, photography, and sculpture), were also encouraged to attend the event to receive another amazing prize to commemorate their accomplishment. College of Marin kindly awarded each of the 6 students a full semester scholarship! The lovely Lauren Smart was on hand to receive her award letter, and was photographed alongside her beautiful charcoal, pen and graphite drawing of her grandfather, entitled Evolution of Life. Lauren, a senior at Redwood High School, plans to attend San Jose State in the fall, and is excited to take some summer art classes at College of Marin. Thank you College of Marin for supporting our young artists!
Nearly 300 people attended the Artists’ Awards Reception for RISING STARS, which drew student artists, their parents, grandparents, friends and teachers who braved the rain to see Marin County’s top high school art work on display.
The 28th annual high school exhibition at the YIA Gallery, on view through March 29, features nearly 150 paintings, photographs, drawings, sculptures and mixed media works. 16 public, private and alternative high schools are included in the show.
San Rafael High School student Amelie Benicio, 16, won the Best of Show prize. Benicio and Redwood High School student Nick Cook, who won the top prize in the mixed media division, were featured this week in a Marin IJ article.
Benicio, a student of teacher Annie Yi, said her charcoal and newsprint mixed media portrait depicts the “quirky yet fearful personality” of a character called “Crazy Eyes” from a popular television show. “I thought it showed a lot of emotion,” Benicio said, after learning she’d won. “I like the eyes and the shading because it came out a lot better than I expected.”
Nick Cook, 18, won for a mixed media piece called “Human Circus.” Art materials he used included markers, stickers and paint pens. Cook is one of five artists who won San Francisco Beautiful’s 2019 Muni art contest. His art is now featured on several Muni buses. Speaking about his piece in RISING STARS, Cook said the work deals with the issue of identity and how people choose to reveal their personalities. “People just aren’ that comfortable expressing themselves,” he said. Cook studies AP Art at Redwood High School with teacher Lauren Bartone and hopes to attend Parsons School of Design.
Please join us for the public opening reception: Friday, February 8, 5 pm–8pmRISING STARS: Feb. 3–March 29, 11 am–4 pm, M–F YIA GALLERY 917 C Street San Rafael, CA 94901
More than 70 teachers, students, parents, and community members came out to celebrate the opening of the INSPIRE teaching artists exhibition at the YIA gallery on Friday, December 14th. The event, held as part of Downtown San Rafael’s Second Fridays Art Walk, celebrated artwork from 25 teaching artists throughout Marin County. The reception offered a rare opportunity for the featured artists to catch-up and share tricks of the trade. Their lively conversation, and vibrant artwork certainly brightened up the rainy evening. Thank you teaching artists for all you do!
On September 14th, during the next Downtown San Rafael art walk, Youth in Arts will be hosting a gallery opening from 5-8pm for our latest exhibition, Kids Imagine Our World. For this show, we asked kids k-8th grade to create works of art based on the prompt, “I imagine a WORLD with…” We asked them where they want to be, what they want to see, and who or what will be with them. Entries include works made at home, in school, and in our weekly open studio that we hosted from this past June through August.
This exhibition follows one of our most prominent shows, Rising Stars, where high schoolers’ art is selected, and judged for prizes. While Rising Stars features brilliant art from high school students all around Marin Country, Kids Imagine Our World features an age group more consistent with the demographic of students we primarily work with.
In conjunction with this kid-focused show, we have set up our very own ode to Yayoi Kusama’s Obliteration Room. Our kid-size version invites our gallery visitors to add their own dots. Together with the Obliteration room and rest of the gallery, there will be a slideshow highlighting other installation artists and how they imagine their world.
Come by Youth in Arts on September 14th to see how local kids imagine their world. Refreshments will be served at the gallery opening 5-8pm. Or, come any other time while the exhibition is up—through November 30th.
By guest blogger Sachiko Moran
The 27th annual RISING STARS show opened with a lively Awards Reception for participating artists at the Youth in Arts Gallery in downtown San Rafael on February 4th. 330 students, parents, and teachers visited the gallery throughout the afternoon. Executive Director, Miko Lee and Student Board Member, Rose Myers presented forty prizes to students from 17 of Marin County’s public, private, and alternative high schools full list of winners here. The show was blindly adjudicated by our panel of professional artists: painter, Kay Carlson; ceramicist, Melissa Woodbury; and photographer, Joy Phoenix. Additional awards were granted to students selected by Perry’s Art Supplies & Framing, RileyStreet Art Supply, Alejandra Tamayo, and Youth in Arts.
The exhibition, which runs through March 28th, highlights paintings, drawings, photography, ceramics, sculptures, digital and mixed media work from up to 12 teacher-nominated students from each school. Over 130 students submitted 2D and 3D artwork for this years RISING STARS, and the varied works have come together in a beautiful presentation that draws well-deserved attention to the talented visual arts students throughout Marin County. Though our staff and judges are always thoroughly impressed by level of student ability, the quality of artwork in this year’s show is particularly astounding. We were also moved by the eloquence and thoughtfulness of the artist statements produced by this years participants. Thank you student artists!
RISING STARS will be on view at YIA Gallery, 917 C Street in San Rafael, through March 28th, 2018; 11am–4pm. We are also open for the 2nd Fridays Art Walk Downtown: Friday, February 9, 5-8 p.m; Friday, March 9, 5-8 p.m.
and Allan Daly for photography
Teens, please join us for a visual arts workshop, How to Pursue Art as a Passion & Profession, on February 20th.
On Thursday, April 27, Laurel Dell teachers, students, staff and families came together at Youth in Arts to celebrate artwork on exhibit created by Laurel Dell kindergarteners in the Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Kindergarten Art Program.
Created by Youth in Arts and Walker’s family to celebrate Walker’s life and love for the arts, the Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts Kindergarten Arts Program combines visual arts classes led by professional artist and educators with “Family Art Nights” that bring the school community together.
All Walker Rezaian Creative HeArts activities center on a theme of friendship–this is both a celebration of Walker, who was gregarious and loved making new friends, and a perfect developmental link for kindergarteners who are learning to be a part of a school community.
The culmination of the project is the annual “Imagining Friendship” gallery exhibit of student work on view at YIA Gallery in downtown San Rafael through May.
The exhibit also includes work from kindergarteners at Venetia Valley, who will celebrate together this week on May 4, and hands-on art activities for visitors. We are open to the public weekdays 11-4, as well as this weekend May 6-7 from noon to 4 pm for Marin Open Studios and on Friday, May 12 from 5 to 8 pm for 2nd Fridays Art Walk Downtown.
Colorful self-portraits created by the students are displayed alongside artist-created cardboard play spaces that show children you can create “something from nothing”.
Laurel Dell staff, teachers and families created a beautiful tote for Naomi Tamura and Ali Rezaian who started the Creative HeArts Fund to honor their son, Walker, and who helped Youth in Arts design the program to have a lasting impact on children. Naomi has since also become Youth in Arts Board President, leading the organization in reaching more Marin children with our creative programs.
To learn more about Creative HeArts, check out our video below. For more about the gallery exhibit, click here. To donate to support this opportunity for young artists, visit our online donation page.
Youth in Arts thanks the Creative HeArts Fund and the Tamura and Rezaian families for their ongoing support for this program.
This activity is supported in part by the California Arts Council, a state agency.
This month, Youth in Arts C Street Project artists Christopher Do, Ayame Keane-Lee, Marikit Mayeno and Joselyn De Leon have been working with Mentor Artist Cathy Bowman to create an original comic book for Litquake San Rafael, as well as a giant-sized “walkable” illustrated story in our YIA Gallery in Downtown San Rafael.
On Saturday, October 8, C Street Project artists hand-colored dozens of copies of their finished comic book Floating with purple and yellow colors that are important elements of their story. They delivered the books to Blue Moon Comics, where Litquake visitors could pick up a free copy and follow a trail of footprints to YIA Gallery. At the gallery, visitors were able to illustrate their own ending to the story and participate in a workshop with Mentor Artist Cathy Bowman on comic book drawing and design techniques.
C Street Project artists also used a press to create original printed images, both to decorate the outsides of the comic book, and as bookmarks for YIA Gallery visitors to take home with them.
On Sunday, the young artists worked with Youth in Arts Mentor Artists to hand-enlarge their book pages to panels that now fill YIA Gallery. They hand-colored each panel and drew their own “bubble worlds” (another story element) which will be strategically hung from the ceiling.
On each “bubble world,” one side of the bubble shows a world the artist wants to see (i.e. a healthy natural world or engaging schooling for everyone) and the other side shows an aspect of the world they want to change (i.e. factories belching pollution or girls excluded from school).
Come visit C Street Project’s “Walkable Comics” exhibit free to the public at YIA Gallery through November 18, Monday through Friday 11 am to 4 pm.
We’ll also be open free to the public on Friday, October 14 and Friday, October 11 from 5-8 pm for Art Walk Downtown. If you’d like to bring your school or youth group on a private tour with a guided hands-on art activity, contact Jen Daly at email@example.com (reservations required).
Or see the show when you join us on Saturday, November 5 to “Paint, Print, Cut & Create” at our art-making studio fundraiser ($30 Teens & Adults and $10 Children–info and tickets at youthinarts.ticketleap.com)
Youth in Arts is currently hosting “Rising Stars,” the 24th Annual Marin County High School Art Show at our gallery at 917 Street in downtown San Rafael. The opening reception for artists and their families on Sunday, March 8, attracted over one hundred young artists and gallery visitors.
Check out photos from the March 8 opening reception here!
Speaking to the assembled crowd of teens and their families, Youth in Arts Executive Director Miko Lee expressed her gratitude to all the exhibiting students. “Thank you for sharing your beautiful work with us,” Lee said. “You inspire us all with your creativity.”
Lee presented students with awards and honorable mentions selected by a panel of local arts professionals, Kay Carlson, Jay Daniels and Katie Rice Jones, from among over 150 student works selected by Marin art teachers at 16 schools to represent their programs.
The Best of Show award went to Ben Lyons, a student at Marin Academy in San Rafael, for his work “Industrial Revolution,” a high-concept ceramic tea set. Two other Marin Academy students also received major awards: Melanie Blue for Best Drawing and Seiichiro Nakai for Best Decorative Arts. Other major award-winners were Jenna Tooley of San Marin High School (Best Painting); Sophia Schwartz-Cutler of Marin School of the Arts (Best Sculpture); Abby Tarantino of Marin Catholic (Best Photo); Hagen Wehde from Redwood High School (Best Altered Image); and Cali Hetfield from The Marin School (Best Mixed Media).
Thirty additional students received Merit Awards, Honorable Mentions or Juror or Sponsor Awards. A full-list of winners is included below
The exhibit will be open to the public through March 27, with regular hours Monday-Friday from 10 am to 4 pm. “Rising Stars” is sponsored by Perry’s Art Supplies & Framing in San Anselmo, the San Anselmo Arts Commission, Marin Open Studios, Uchiwa Ramen and Il Davide Restaurant in San Rafael.
Best of Show – Industrial Revolution – Ben Lyons – Marin Academy
Best Painting – Introspection – Jenna Tooley – San Marin HS
Best Drawing – Self Portrait – Melanie Blue – Marin Academy
Best Decorative Arts – Tee Time – Seiichiro Nakai – Marin Academy
Best Sculpture – Treasurer – Sophia Schwartz-Cutler – Marin School of the Arts
Best Photo – Best Friends – Abby Tarantino – Marin Catholic
Best Altered Image – Untitled – Hagen Wehde – Redwood HS
Best Mixed Media – Untitled – Cali Hetfield – The Marin School
Reflective Objects – Raissa Boysen – Marin School of the Arts
Awe – Tara Henry – Marin Catholic
Birds in a Tree – TeamWorks Art Mentoring Program (Treyvonn, Mario, Adam, Angela, Javier, Oliver, Alyssa) – Loma Alta School
Flying Buttresses – Gabriel Hamilton – Sir Francis Drake HS
Chained For Five Rupees – Leigh Pomerantz – Marin Academy
Geometry in Color – Kasha LaRoche – Sir Francis Drake HS
Hobo Botanical Garden – Emily Villavicencio – San Rafael HS
Pour – Max Sigerman – The Branson School
Raven Inkwood – Yezi Li – San Marin HS
Self Portrait – Ciara Post – Marin Academy
Toadstool – Olivia Harvell – San Domenico School
Untitled – Tara Sola – San Domenico School
Untitled – Holly Parkin – Tamalpais HS
Children of the Moon – Alia Anderson May – Marin Catholic
Distortion – Dominic DiPaola – San Andreas HS
Drakes Beach – Andres Gomez – Tomales HS
Husky – Caeli Gallagher – San Rafael HS
Jean Jacket – Anna Taylor – Sir Francis Drake HS
Learning Equals Education – TeamWorks Art Mentoring Program
Light at the End of the Tunnel – Zoe Carrell
Mel Goes Bananas – Kate Claman – Marin Academy
Porcelain Head – John Iwaszewicz – Oak Hill School
Painting Silver Lining – Blake Patterson – The Branson School
Self-Portrait – Willow Jones – The Marin School
Untitled – Merryta Liu – San Domenico School
Untitled – Angela Chen – San Domenico School
Young Sanity – Alondra Vazquez – Terra Linda HS
Black Cat Prizes
Digital Art – Makai: Towards the Sea – Jana Viets – Marin Catholic
Manipulated photography – Untitled – Hagen Wehde – Redwood HS
Unmanipulated Photography – Untitled – Olivia Runnfeldt – Redwood HS
Untitled – Anna-Sofie Whalen – Tamalpais HS
Wings to Fly – TeamWorks Art Mentoring Program – Loma Alta
Loma Alta School/TeamWorks Art Mentoring: Teacher Katya McCulloch
Treyvonn, Mario, Adam, Angela, Javier, Oliver, Alyssa
Marin Academy: Teacher Anne Maurice, Katharine Boyd & Jenny Rosenberg
Seiichiro Nakai, Melanie Blue, Ben Lyons, Kate Claman, Ciara Post, Leigh Pomerantz, Rebecca Strull, Erika Page, Luke Raddue, Anjali Bodony, Lindsay Levine
Marin Catholic: Teachers Laurie Reemsnyder & Mark Jaeger
Abby Tarantino, Jana Viets, Alia Anderson May, Tara Henry, Juliette Hvistendahl, Meghan Rooney, Jack Burnham, Kristen Rolstad, Dino Kalfos
Marin School of the Arts: Teachers Sabrina Kalleen & Mary Grehan
Sophia Schwartz-Cutler, Raissa Boysen, Ciel Pierlot, Jensen Neff, Emely Lemus
Oak Hill School: Teachers Michelle Barbera & Sophie Cooper
John Iwaszewicz, Hannah Sherwood, Ben Willbrand, Ryan Heller, Harrison Mahler, Megan Busby, Luke Meng, Matthew Seiberling, Braden O’Connell, Strider Barker, Katie Tysinger
Redwood High School: Teachers Susanne Maxwell & Karen Meadows
Hagen Wehde, Olivia Runnfeldt, Kenzie Johnson, Megan Wilford, Ryan Stiles, Haley Turner, Bridget Wait
San Andreas High School: Teacher Gray Douglas
Dominic DiPaola, Patrick Cook, Meryl Fe Klein, Altimont Bolton, Samantha McEvoy
San Domenico School: Teachers Logan Wood, Jill Hoefgen & Carina Ybarra
Merryta Liu, Angela Chen, Tara Sola, Olivia Harvell, Erika Johnson, Bella Gosman, Kathryn Volovski, Ellen Zhu, Vicky Lin, Camille Ayanruoh, Mia Ma, Moment Li
San Marin High School: Teachers Mariah Fisher & Denise Mozzetti
Jenna Tooley, Yezi Li, Olivia Lamont, Liam Gavin, Lauren Frank, Yezi Li
San Rafael High School: Teachers Johanna Herrera & Trenton Smith
Zoe Carrell, Caeli Gallagher, Emily Villavicencio, Roxana Velasquez, Daylor Giron, Kailey Brown, Marissa Mullins, Duriel Meisner, Sonia Sondheim, Kien Lam, Brenda Arellano, Julia Jackson-Clark
Sir Francis Drake High School: Teachers Martha Cederstrom & Beth Cederstrom
Anna Taylor, Gabriel Hamilton, Kasha LaRoche, Ashmoore, Sarah McAmis, Michael Kest, Matt Richman, Annika Williams
Tamalpais High School: Teachers Zach Gilmour, Lisa Ouse Hicks & Mary Krawczyk
Holly Parkin, Scarlett Costello, Anna-Sofie Whalen, Natanya Glatt, Ryan Turner, Jordan Sherman, Anna Baldwin, Hannah Saltonstall, Jessica Hudson, Izzy Parlamis, Nicole Cochary, Genevieve Tremblay
Terra Linda High School: Teachers Katy Bernheim, Elizabeth Galbreath & Allison Oropallo
Alondra Vazquez, Cielo de la Rosa, Marcus Perkins, Daniel Swanson, Brisia Reales, Annabelle Vinokur, Tifani Sosa, Majken Hanson, Taren Bouwman, Jasmin Salgado, Chris Perani
The Branson School: Teachers Eric Oldmixon & Allyson Seal
Blake Patterson, Max Sigerman, Zoe Moynihan, Grace Roberts Burbank, Frankie Gerraty, Sam Reinertsen, Megan Gillfillan, Bix Hirigoyen, Sophie Rosenbaum-Jones, Jack Verhille, Hunt Wyman
The Marin School: Teacher Alison Murray
Cali Hetfield, Willow Jones, KC Seligman, Moiya Morgan, Jeffrey Kolthoff, Michelle Chan, Crash DesRosiers, Tess Hecht, Cali Hetfield, Jacob Weber
Tomales High School: Teacher Rachel Somerville
Andres Gomez, Clara Wright, Mario Passantino, Abrielle Spaletta, Ashley Weir, Litia Bowater