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Artist residency launches at Cunningham Elementary

Wednesday, August 22, 2018 by Katy McElroy

This year, the students of Cunningham Elementary will get to work side-by-side with local artists thanks to a new initiative through MINDPOP, the Austin Independent School District and the city’s Cultural Arts Division that provides a creative solution to the problem of dwindling affordable studio space. Setting up shop in four annex classrooms on the school’s campus for the inaugural year of the program are Bibliographia, Teatro Vivo, Theatre Heroes, Paramount Story Wranglers and Pollyanna Theatre Company. As part of the arrangement, the artists will be able to work on their own artwork, but they also will provide “unique arts-learning opportunities for area students and their families.” MINDPOP program director Jackson Knowles described a day in the life of the program as such: “A visual artist may spend their morning painting in preparation for a gallery exhibition, and then the afternoon with 3rd grade students creating a playground mosaic. Or a 5th grade class may come across a reference to the Harlem Renaissance and then have the opportunity to ask a songwriter in residence about the role of music in society. The possibilities are limitless.” The official launch party, which is open to the public, will occur in conjunction with the school’s Back to School Night on Sept. 6 at 5 p.m. at Cunningham Elementary.

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