by Rebecca Enright
On April 13, the senior class of 2016 began a new tradition, an installation art work made out of clay stones. This piece will be progressively built by each year’s senior class in the courtyard that currently holds a cement-circle in the center of it.
Each year, the students will place a layer of rocks in a circle formation after having signing them, and each layer will consist of a different color combination (this year’s being black rocks with gold writing). The fine arts students, directed by teacher Mrs. Hruby, developed these small stones from clay and ran the activity period it took to have each senior sign one.
This installation artwork was inspired by Andy Goldsworthy, a European artist that utilizes natural materials and creates amazing sculptures out of them. His specific type of work does not last, as he emphasizes the beauty of the temporal. However, Keystone Oaks’ project has been developed to stick around for years to come, since the stones will be coated with a protective layer of sealant that will prevent the wear and tear resulting from weather conditions.
Fine Arts students and seniors Hannah Hutchin and Erin Bullister explained the formation of this project, stating that Mrs. Hruby “introduced us to this artist (Andy Goldsworthy) that she found, and we all started talking and [she] told us what to do.”
The overall process of molding, painting and glazing the rocks took them about two weeks.
Principal Dr. Hartbauer had mentioned this project several times earlier in the year, and so the seniors had been building up a bit of anticipation for it, but it was not without its drawbacks. Many students questioned various aspects of the project or had minor doubts about it.
“It was really hard because you’re writing on a small rock …but it was fun to do,” stated senior Margrethe Egeli.
When asked how she would improve upon the project, Geeta Acharya stated, “We should make our own rocks so it’s more unique and have time to design it.”
Indeed, the overall idea of seniors leaving their mark on the school was nice, but the idea would be more substantial if the seniors had a larger part in the process other than just signing their name or putting a little doodle on the rocks. Although this would run a higher risk of students not turning it in or not taking it seriously, it would ultimately only affect those few.
However, this project did enable the senior class to leave their mark, and that notion in itself means a lot, as the majority of students wish to believe that they have made some sort of impact in their time here. Even though some may never see the finished project, it and our time here will remain imprinted upon our memory, just as our names will forever be on the rocks we have left behind.