challenged to make
an artistic splash at Madison pool
various historical events of the city
Lela Jane Bradshaw
(December 2012) While Madison, Ind.s
bicentennial year may be over, the many celebrations encouraged an enthusiasm
for history that has stirred up many creative ideas that continue to
enrich the town. One project that got under way in November was a historical
mural being painted by area high school students on a warehouse wall
that faces the Crystal Beach Swimming Pool. The 107-foot mural will
present a timeline of Madison history, beginning in 1939, the year that
the pool opened, through 2009, the bicentennial year.
Project organizer Bonnie Peugeot, who teaches art at Trimble County
(Ky.) High School, said she is excited that this mural allows students
to take their work out of the classroom and into the community. When
you are a young artist, it is fun to share your gift, she says.
by Lela Bradshaw
Peugeot (above and
below) directs students as
they prepare to begin work on
the 107-foot mural behind
Crystal Beach Swimming
Pool in Madison, Ind.
Trimble County sophomore Sidney Gossom agrees, saying
that the project is important to her because Im always in
Madison. I come to Crystal Beach, and it will be cool to have something
Ive done here.
The mural is being made possible by a number of area schools and organizations
joining together to support the project. The project is being funded
by a $1,000 grant from the Madison Bicentennial committee and a $500
grant from the Community Foundation of Madison and Jefferson County
grant program. Laura Hodges, president of the Madison City Council,
explains that the Bicentennial Committee is committed to doing
projects that will impact the community for years to come.
Peugeot said she expects the project will draw about 15-20 students
from Trimble County and four or five from each of the other participating
high schools including: Shawe, Southwestern and Madison. At the end
of the project, students will write their reflections, sharing their
experiences which will then be collected as part of a booklet. Students
who spend 35 hours or more on the mural will be rewarded with a special
surprise that Peugeot is keeping under wraps at the moment.
Peugeot said she is enthusiastic about collaborating with her students,
adding, I can honestly say I have a very large number of very
talented students. Art teachers from the various schools will
be taking part as well. When the time comes for the addition of final
details, Peugeot will be joined by area professional artists to put
the finishing touches on the painting.
The Madison Parks Department helped prepare the site for the students
work by cutting the weeds around the building and power washing the
wall to get it ready for the primer. Parks Director Dave Stucker said,
I think it is going to be very interesting just to see the history
Research and planning on the mural has been going on for several months,
but the actual work did not begin until November. After the wall was
primed, students began sketching the images with permanent markers.
The wall is made of corrugated metal, which adds to the challenge. Peugeot
describes it assort of like drawing on a Ruffle potato chip.
Once the design outlines are drawn, the colors will be added using exterior
house paint. Peugeot explains that the colors will be put on one at
a time. For example, all of the black will be painted at once, all of
the dark blue at once, and so on. After the colors have been completed,
a clear sealant will be applied to protect the mural from the elements.
We have to have it done before Memorial Day, says Peugeot.
So were praying for a mild winter.
Good weather is important not only to make the outdoor work more pleasant
for the artists, but also because it is important that the temperature
be warm enough for the paint to go on correctly.
Peugeot and her students have been busy researching the history and
fashion of the past 70 years. She believes that her students enjoyed
learning about the 1950 Madison team that took home the state basketball
championship and says that it was quite a surprise to read about a submarine
that went through the town in the 1940s. Peugeot believes that the experience
will help the students better understand and appreciate the history
of the area saying that the project is making history real.
The mural will not only highlight important events from the citys
past, such as the courthouse fire, but will also show the changes in
everyday life and fashion as well. The boys wanted to make there
there was a car from each decade, she said, laughing. Peugeot
proposed the idea of showing the evolution in swimsuit styles throughout
the years, and careful attention will also be paid to the hairstyles
of the people in the mural and the changes in technology from large
boom boxes to tiny smart phones.
Hodges said, Im excited about it. Its a wonderful
thing that students are taking part of. Its something they can
look at with pride and point to for years to come. Its such a
wonderful thing when citizens take the initiative to do something for
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