Student-Created Mural Now Hangs Outside SPMS

Student-Created Mural Now Hangs Outside SPMS
Posted on 09/24/2019
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There is a beautiful new addition to South Park Middle School this school year. A mural now hangs outside the school and can be seen when students, families and visitors enter the campus off Stewart Road.

The mural, created by South Park Middle School Mural Club members, art teacher Ms. Allison Watkins and artist Conor Coleman of the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, is inspired by Rachel’s Challenge. Rachel’s Challenge is a nationwide program that equips and inspires individuals to replace acts of violence, bullying and negativity with acts of respect, kindness and compassion. Rachel’s Challenge came to South Park Middle School in February 2019.

For months last school year, Mural Club members teamed with Coleman to help develop the mural design. Students helped plan the concept for the mural, created tessellations for the design, primed and prepped the boards, created and spray painted flower stencils and assisted with the painting process. Students dedicated much of their Eagle Time to help finish the mural and held a paint party on May 31 to complete and celebrate the mural. Recently, the mural was installed outside South Park Middle School.

The mural features a young girl watering a flower. This represents the ability of a nurturing and kind gesture to spark positive change and growth in others. The flower’s roots come down to form messages of inspiration and guidance. These messages were picked by the students. They include encouraging statements like, “You Matter,” “Stay Strong,” “Shine Bright” and “You’re Loved.”  The roots transcend to form a tessellation of triangles, a form which elicits strength. The tessellation of triangles transitions into a tessellation of reaching hands which represents the power of teamwork and collaboration. The negative space within the hands forms a loving, compassionate heart. Within the shape, there is a shadow forming a raindrop shape and a heart. At the bottom of the mural are flowers created by each member of the Mural Club.

Congratulations to the members of the South Park Middle School Club for their work on a piece of art that conveys such a positive and powerful message. And thank you to Conor Coleman for his guidance and time through this process and to Ms. Watkins for volunteering her time to spearhead the Mural Club and help them throughout the year.

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