By Yoorie Lu, Visual Arts Specialist
Earlier this school year, author and illustrator Javaka Steptoe visited our students to talk about his book, Radiant Child: The Story of Young Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. Recently, our 2nd Graders studied Basquiat's paintings, including the symbols and messages that were embedded in his artwork. The students then came up with their own messages that they wished to send out to the public with their unique artwork. Basquiat often scratched out words in his artwork, and during Javaka Steptoe's visit, he shared with students that this was a technique to get the viewers to be curious and pay more attention to the hidden message. Some of the messages that our students created were: "Be Inspired," "Recycle & Reuse," "Stop making plastic," and "Not hunting for animals fur." Then, they cut their wood pieces with saws and used a drill and a staple gun to bind their wood panels together. We had a blast!