Child’s Play

Dania Hernandez, International Editor

South Lakes High School Art students have recently created a piece of work available to the public! The colorful sculpture can be found outside of the school, where students can sit and relax with classmates and teachers. An interview was conducted with South Lakes High School’s art teacher, Mr. Rando to find out more about the project.


How long did the project take and who was involved?


“I think it took around two months. [The students] started it before the holiday season, and as they reflected back on it, they hadn’t realized how much they [progressed] through the steps and stages throughout the project. We had a variety of students working with large scale saws, and using the screw guns. There is always a core group of students who are the driving leaders, but literally; the whole class I would say, had at least a part they had contributed.”


What was the original planning, and what was the entire concept?


“There wasn’t actually an original planning. What happened as an idea, [these students would’ve] liked to do something as far as public artwork for school grounds. We started by taking the material we had left over from the lake sculptures. Repurposing materials, we had started with painting over that material. [Students] measured the boards and turned those measurements into a small scale. From then, the students approached the real material, but there’s that translation that is interpretive. A bench [came into mind, and the students decided to take it from there]. They decided to create a sculpture. It’s a process of morphing called ‘design thinking’, they had looked at this one unit and decided to replicate it. There are actually three units but they’re interlocked, so you’d never notice that.”


What was the most challenging part, and what was the most interesting part?


“The assembly process actually, because it is physically challenging to get the boards to come together and [piling up holes, in order] to make sure that it’s sturdy and there’s a lot of structural engineering that comes with it. That’s something that we can take for granted whenever we look at a stool or chair. There is this engineering criteria that has to be thought about, and that’s what really becomes an educational component [within this project]. It’s amazing because students took off operating drills to make students come together to create the sculpture. Painting, patterns and measurements were done over time. Some students were very meticulous, while others were abstract in their approach.”


South Lakes High School also works with Public Art Reston, a non-profit organization. Public Art Reston will have this feature on their website, and it’ll be submitted to a national website. The students will receive public credit for the project. Mr. Rando hopes that school grounds can become larger displays of sculptures, and hopes that more artwork will be created around the school.