According to a press release, the Utah Division of Arts and Museums and the Cedar City RAP tax fund have both generously donated enough grant money to cover the costs of SUU’s first course of workshops with SUMA Public Art Camp for Teens completely.
The art camp program begins Monday, and Braithwaite Fine Arts Gallery Community Outreach and Art Education Coordinator Nathan McDonald said each teenager accepted into the workshops would receive a full scholarship to attend.
He said there were 15 slots, and as of Friday, four of them were still available for area youth ages 13 to 18 who are interested in learning the ins and outs of the world of art. SUMA Public Art Camp for Teens will run Monday through Friday for the next two weeks from 9 a.m. to noon at the Frontier Homestead State Park Museum.
McDonald said the upcoming art camp is one of three, two-week courses for teens that SUMA has planned this summer. He said the idea behind art camp was to engage resident youth in the thriving artist community that lives in Cedar City and to give them the basic skills to understand how to achieve lasting goals in the world of art.
McDonald, said there were many elements that have played a role in creating the three summer art camp opportunities. As a student at SUU who is currently working towards his MFA in Arts Administration, he said this project began as his capstone to his degree.
“I finished coursework last spring and am developing the secondary education outreach program for the new museum as a capstone project,” McDonald said. “I will defend the capstone in August.”
In the meantime, McDonald said he has enlisted the help of two SUU student interns; two Utah Division of Arts and Museums change leaders and three resident artists to help bring all of the magic into the camp classroom every day. He said their hard work and dedication has been an immeasurable blessing in bringing his months long, labor-of-love to fruition.
SUU senior Art History major Kelsey Peterson said that she is excited to have a chance to work with teens teaching them about art, because there are so many fascinating historical art stories to share. She said one of the lessons she has planned would involve a website that she has found which offers a virtual tour of cave paintings.
Each of the 10 days scheduled for SUMA Public Art Camp for Teens will be infused with a curriculum that includes everything from learning about art in ancient cultures to street art, as well as how to build a portfolio, accept critical review and create an artist statement.
The full two weeks of instruction will culminate in a completed permanent art installation mural that will reside at the Frontier Homestead State Park Museum. The mural will be composed and executed by the teens themselves with instruction and guidance from resident artists Katharine Villard, Arlene Braithwaite and Jennifer Rasmusson.
Villard said she plans to teach the students about different mural styles throughout history, and show them how to go about composing such an enormous work of art. She said that while she plans to support and encourage the students, it is her hope that they will make the project their own.
“The instructors should be as informative and helpful as possible,” she said. “But the real design ideas and the execution of it should be completely up to the students.”
McDonald said that the other two summer camps will also follow a two-week Monday through Friday schedule, but they will cover different topics about art. He said the next SUMA art camp, digital design camp, would focus on industry standards – teaching youth about how to create a graphic design concept, and how to use programs like Adobe Creative Suite to bring that concept to life.
The final camp of the summer, traditional media camp, covers the basics of composition, form and mediums such as painting and drawing McDonald said. He said there will be lectures given to students by community artists during these classes, and that students keep all of the supplies provided to them during the two-week course.
For more information about SUMA Public Art Camp for Teens, or to register for the classes email Nathan McDonald at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Braithwaite Fine Arts Gallery at (435) 586-5432. Gallery hours are Mon. through Sat. from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.