South celebrates 10th birthday with mural project
NORTHAMPTON TOWNSHIP – What’s a birthday without a present?
In celebration of their school’s 10th year, students and staff at Council Rock High School South are creating a special gift to mark the occasion - a mosaic mural – that will eventually adorn the school’s front lobby.
“Solid Roots Branching Out to the Future” is the theme of the mural, which is taking shape on the backdrop of two large panels measuring 5-by-S feet and 8-by-S feet.
Stretching across the panels are branches of a tree, its limbs decorated with leaves and peppered with open squares which will eventually be filled with photographs depicting student participation in the school’s extracurricular activities.
The tree’s root system represents how the school is anchored in the community while the branches signify the school reaching out to the future with its more than 2,000 students, according to mural advisor and art teacher Madame Kohl.
Teams of eight students at a time have been working on the project, gluing pieces of tile, one-by-one, onto the facade of the mural.
“Everything’s like a puzzle,” said Kohl. “If we can’t find a tile that works in the space, we shape it to the right size. It’s like what they did in the old Roman times.”
The project is a joint effort of the school’s Art Forum and the French Honor Society and is being coordinated by student leaders Nick Hesson, president of Art Forum, and Claire Chu, president of the French Honor Society.
“With this mural, we wanted to show how much we have achieved and how much we will achieve through the past 10 years and over the next 10 years,” said Hesson.
“In 10 years, our school has already accomplished so much,” adds Chu. “The next 10 years, it’s going to get even better.”
The 11th graders said they are pleased with how the work is progressing and how the school community has embraced the project, though they both admit it’s been a very slow, tedious process.
“Claire and I have spent 29 plus hours after school and all the days off just working on it,” said Hesson. “And after school every Tuesday and Thursday we work for about two hours trying to finish this.”
“It’s very tedious work,” adds Chu, “but it’s also relaxing to just sit there. It’s methodical in a way so you can just sit there and relax.”
In addition to coordinating and working on the project, Hesson has taken on the extra task of creating the 20 leaves that will decorate the mural. “I’m using different types of glazes, colors and designs, but all going with the theme of the piece.”
So far, more than 200 students have chipped in to help, either by breaking tiles or affixing them to the panels. And on Oct. 14, during the school’s Fall Festival, the public joined the effort.
“We’ve had a lot of people help. We had parents and siblings and kids coming home from college. We even had a four generation family in here helping us,” said Kohl. “It’s very cool and it’s fun.”
The mural is scheduled for installation in the school’s front lobby on December 1T.