Nevada Museum of Art, E.L. Cord Museum School mural project

Published: Jul. 15, 2022 at 7:20 AM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) -A partnership of organizations, a talented group of teens, and one local artist have come together to create a work of art. The E.L. Cord Museum School and Communities in Schools of Western Nevada at Hug High created a project for teens in our community. The Keystone Bridge now displays a colorful mural that represents nature and our connection to it.

In the last six months, the E.L. Cord Museum, high school students from enCompass Academy, and Communities in Schools of Western Nevada organized how to make this mural come to life. The teens presented their project to The City of Reno, a concept was created, and they are even being paid for their work. This is how CoLab Mural Works came to be.

Alexis Adams is a program director at Communities in Schools of Western Nevada. She mentioned the teens wanted ways to give back to the community. Whether it be cleaning up trash, planting trees, or a huge mural project- their inspiration is what sparked the partnership with the museum school,

“This idea came about after we did a project in the past with some students. It brought awareness that we needed to do community service for a change. This is huge and it’s nothing but creating awareness,” Adams said.

Eddie Guth is the Museum School Director at NMA. He shared that this project is teaching them life skills and showing them how the art world can be,

“It’s just getting them out into the community and adding something really beautiful to the area. It’s teaching them that there are viable career paths in the arts, and they’re getting that real-world hands-on experience through this program,” Guth said.

Local artist Hannah Eddy was chosen to design the mural piece, she helped paint a mural when she was 15 too,

“I’m really lucky to have the opportunity to work with kids and bringing the local community in painting murals is such a cool thing. There are no barriers to entry anyone can see it and enjoy it, so why not have community members take part in it? They feel connected to it more and we can just all together make our city look better,” Eddy said.

Besides adding color to our community, this project gave teens the chance to explore their passion.

Emily Lopez-Tabaras and Ollie Burdette told us the meaning behind a project like this for them,

“It’s great really because for me this is my first project like working with other people and doing something for the town. People can come together just with art, and it takes a lot of people to do this. I am so glad everyone has been working hard”, Lopez-Tabaras said.

“It’s felt amazing because it’s gone by really quick. It’s been cool to see it be painted and have so many people that I care about. I love hanging out with helping me with it is so fun,” Burdette said.

Communities in Schools of Western Nevada and the E.L. Cord Museum School expressed their gratitude for the kids and what the hope is for the future of CoLab Mural Works,

“These are our kids, this is something they’re doing, and I just want to give them as much light and props as possible,” Adams shared.

Eddie Guth stated,

“We do hope that this is something that can continue. I do think a lot of people can agree that arts education is incredibly important. This is a great opportunity for youth to be involved in the arts, and to be involved in the community too. We hope that this something that picks up and keeps going.”

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