Middle Schoolers Team Up with Artist to Paint Surreal Ride for June 1 First Friday Artwalk

Breakwater middle schoolers and international aerosol artist Tim Clorius have conspired to transform the everyday Breakwater School bus into a mobile work of art. After a May 22 public lecture on Street Art and the tradition of vehicle painting found throughout the world, students will collaborate with Clorius to prep the bus for painting. They will work on the piece in the Nason’s Corner schoolyard throughout the week. The transformed bus will have an “Opening” at the June 1 First Friday Artwalk in front of Reny’s on Congress Street in Portland. Students and the artist will be on hand with a performance art piece and give the public an opportunity to hop on the bus.

Inspired by visits to Portland’s vibrant contemporary art scene with art teacher Kelly McConnell, Breakwater middle schoolers sought her out to jazz up their school bus. “At that moment I knew we had to get Tim in here to talk to them about the project and life as a working artist” said McConnell. With this, the Artist-in-Residence idea was born.

German native Clorius, whose work has been featured recently both at Portland’s Aucosisco Gallery and U. Maine Farmington’s Art Gallery, was quick to invite the students to his Free Street studio to begin conceiving design ideas. Clorius said, “I am really interested in the kids knowing that making art and making a living from it is serious business that takes training and dedication. It’s about taking smart risks.”

Jennifer Hutchins from Portland Arts and Cultural Alliance said, “Having young people participate in First Friday and bring their parents into Portland to see our vibrant creative economy is exciting. These kids are learning to be the stewards of Portland’s art scene.”

Area art supplier Artists and Craftsman and Montana Cans have generously contributed paints for the project. The public is welcome to the May 22 lecture at 12:15 at Breakwater School, 856 Brighton Ave., Portland, and to view the ongoing work at the school throughout the week. The “Opening” will be at the June 1 First Friday Artwalk on Congress Street in front of Reny’s.


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