The Calgary Board of Education (CBE) Studio Artists in Schools program provides opportunities for local artists to become an Artist in Residence at CBE schools across the city.  One artist who has been working with CBE students had this to say:

“The opportunity to be the Studio Artist for Douglasdale School has been nothing short of fantastic. First and foremost, the staff at Douglasdale have made me feel welcome and part of the community right from day one. This starts with Diane and Jen and runs all the way through the rest of the staff – teachers and administrators alike. I have had the chance to work with many of the students in their classes as well as through some one-to-one visits in my studio space. It is an invigorating experience and keeps me on my toes. Often, students will come up and ask me, “What are you working on now?” It’s a great reminder that I need to stay focused while in my studio!

Secondly, my artistic practice has had a chance to really re-establish itself and grow thanks to the Studio Artist program. For the last 5 years, I had been working at the Glasgow School of Art in a variety of teaching and programme leadership roles. While it was an exciting place to be, the work was also very time consuming. I didn’t realise how much my studio practice had atrophied during that time while my focus was elsewhere. The opportunity to spend time immersed in artistic research is priceless, immensely gratifying, and I can see a significant progression within my work since joining the CBE.

Lastly, it’s always invigorating to see students to get excited about making artworks. I have had a number of students – across all grades – that have really engaged with the idea of storytelling through comics. In the DDS Learning Commons, Mrs. Perry has put a table out specifically for student created books, which is now completely covered.

It’s my sincere hope that the CBE can repeat the Studio Artist program in the coming years, as I believe that it offers a unique, important opportunity for  both artists and the CBE community.”

EducationMatters is excited to help facilitate this program in CBE schools – the experience is enriching not only for students who receive the opportunity to incorporate art in their day to day lives, but also for the artists who are given the chance to  develop new skills, expand their creativity, and help inspire a new generation of art-enthusiasts.