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Monday, September 24, 2012

" 5 Blocks" Exhibit of Youth Mixed Media Artwork Showcased at the Utah Museum of Fine Arts (SLC: Sept 21 - April 21)

--Dana Hernandez, 801.585.9880, dana.hernandez@umfa.utah.edu
--Tracey Matthews, 801.581.8336, tracey.matthews@umfa.utah.edu
--Annie Burbidge Ream, 801.585.5168, aburbidgeream@umfa.utah.edu

5 Blocks
Youth Mixed Media Artwork Showcased at the Utah Museum of Fine Arts

Image courtesy the UMFA

Salt Lake City, UT – How do we shape the spaces around us, and how do those spaces shape us? The Utah Museum of Fine Arts (UMFA) is pleased to present 5 Blocks, an exhibition of mixed media artwork by students who examined questions about the built environment. 5 Blocks will be on view from September 21, 2012-April 21, 2013 in the Emma Eccles Jones Education Gallery at the Utah Museum of Fine Arts, in the Marcia and John Price Museum Building at the University of Utah.

5 Blocks resulted from collaborations between Hawthorne Elementary School in Salt Lake City, Granger High School in West Valley City, and educators from the Utah Museum of Fine Arts. Over the course of the 2012 spring semester, the elementary and high school students explored the history, design, development and future of five-block areas near their schools. Through a variety of media, 5 Blocks communicates what the students discovered when they left the classroom and engaged with their neighborhoods.

Using all five senses, Hawthorne Elementary students discovered past and present stories of a five-block area in Salt Lake City. The students experienced their community as a dynamic place of change and expressed their findings through photography, sketching, sculpture, painting and writing. Visitors to 5 Blocks will encounter a three-dimensional cityscape and collage created by the elementary school students and UMFA educators.

Granger High students focused on a bustling, commercial five-block area in West Valley City. They researched the city’s revitalization efforts, examined the area in terms of design and management, and learned about West Valley City’s General Plan. In response, the students expressed their visions for the future of their neighborhood through digital prints and both wire and ceramic sculpture.

During the planning of 5 Blocks, UMFA educators consulted with Damon Rich, a nationally recognized city planner who currently serves as the Urban Designer for the City of Newark, New Jersey. Rich assisted the UMFA in piloting new curricular approaches to connect the UMFA’s education programs to architecture and planning in Utah. 

“This partnership provided a number of wonderful opportunities for my students,” said Andrea Heidinger, teacher at Granger High School. “This project was especially unique because students had a chance to work with and learn from artists and urban planners. The artistic results that came from the community explorations and discussions yielded a rich and diverse range of artwork of which the students can be proud.”

5 Blocks is supported in part by the Utah Arts & Museums, with funding from the State of Utah and the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional support provided by The Williams Foundation. For more information about this exhibition and others coming to the UMFA, visit www.umfa.utah.edu


Evening for Educators
Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 5:30 p.m.
Teachers and others with an interest are invited to discover ways to help students of all grade levels explore their built surroundings at an Evening for Educators. Funded in part by the StateWide Art Partnership, this program is free and open to the public and will feature a lecture by Damon Rich. 

Third Saturday for Families: House Sculptures
Saturday, January 19, 2013 from 1:00-4:00 p.m. 
Kids and parents can explore the youth artwork on view in 5 Blocks and then make sculptures of their own houses and neighborhood buildings. Third Saturdays are funded in part by the Salt Lake County Zoo, Arts and Parks program.


The Utah Museum of Fine Arts is located on the University of Utah campus in the Marcia and John Price Museum Building at 410 Campus Center Drive. The UMFA’s mission is to engage visitors in discovering meaningful connections with the artistic expressions of the world’s cultures. Museum hours are Tuesday – Friday: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Wednesdays 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.; Weekends, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.; closed Mondays and holidays. For more information call (801) 581-7332 or visit www.umfa.utah.edu. 

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