Garden Nurtures Community Art


Senior Silvana Moiceanu draws in the Campo Garden.

Lindsay Wilson, Lifestyle Editor

Recently, Campolindo’s garden has become not only a haven for the environmentally-friendly, but also a symbol of productive campus reform and inspiration to students and teachers alike.

From student involved clubs, such as Global Student Embassy (GSE) and the Lorax Club, to Biology and Environmental Science classes, many are becoming involved in the small, yet expanding plot near the athletic stadium.

This sense of community has recently affected art students. In addition to drawing in the garden, certain members of the art classes participated in setting up a booth at the Lafayette Art and Wine Festival on September 21 and 22  to showcase artwork from both Campolindo and Acalanes students.

Proceeds from the silent auction at the booth will be given to GSE for the garden.

Preparation for the booth started last July when senior Silvana Moiceanu decided that she wanted to create a student art booth at Lafayette’s Art and Wine Festival in order to bring awareness to the art program and raise money for the garden. “I went on a trip with GSE during spring break to Nicaragua. I got to know Mallory Bressler, program director of GSE, and her passion inspired me to further involve myself with the organization,” Moiceanu said.

“I hoped to combine the efforts of those who work on the garden with the talents of art students at Campo,” she said. Little did Moiceanu know that her idea would spark a “community effort” to exhibit student artwork.

After drafting a proposal and attending several Lafayette Chamber of Commerce meetings, Moiceanu reached out to Tome Taneyhill of the chamber and the Lafayette Partners in Education (LPIE) for help. Taneyhill provided her with a spot at the festival, and Myrna Kimmelman at LPIE helped to secure a $100 grant to cover costs for the booth. Moiceanu then spent months spreading word of the project, starting a Facebook page and contacting friends and acquaintances throughout the district.

Moiceanu and other students from the art program worked in the garden during several art class periods in the last couple of weeks.

Over the past couple of months, Moiceanu accumulated about 30 to 40 pieces, including pencil drawings, acrylic paintings, and pen drawings. “A lot of it is personal artwork, but some was inspired by the garden,” she said.

Moiceanu and other students, such as senior Ashley Bernardo, junior Michelle Pang, and junior Emma Archangel, made the actual plan for the booth. “It was hard to come up with an idea of how to set up the booth and then to find the needed materials,” Moiceanu said. They enlisted the help of AP Art student Kilian Goltra to make a banner, involving a student from the medium of digital media and design. Woodshop teacher Don Dupont helped the art students by building frames to display the work.

The collective effort at Campolindo under Moiceanu’s leadership produced the first student artwork booth at the Lafayette Art and Wine Festival.

Held on Saturday and Sunday from 8:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., the art booth was manned by Moiceanu and several other volunteers. “It was kind of chaotic at the beginning, but once we got the hang of everything, it was very professional. We received a lot of compliments,” Bernardo said.

The volunteers faced a more pressing issue in addition to the disorganization. “The day of the festival it rained, so we had to scramble to save the artwork. We taped up tarps around the booth to prevent water damage,” Moiceanu said.

The booth was a success, according to Moiceanu.  5 pieces of artwork were auctioned off for a total revenue of $312.50. Senior Amberlie Kaiser contributed a water color and a text portrayal to the project. She was very excited that her watercolor sold and that she was able to participate in raising money for GSE. “I was genuinely surprised that my piece had bids. I was really pleased that I was able to contribute to GSE,” Kaiser said.

Bernardo was also appreciative of the event. “It made me feel really accomplished that people were recognizing our work and were willing to contribute,” she said. Pang also praised the project. “It helped publicize Campo. We were opened up to a lot of opportunities that we might not have had otherwise,” she said.

Art teacher Jill Langston believed that the booth was significant because it contributed  to GSE and brought exposure to student artwork. “I think that it is important to raise money for good and productive organizations such as GSE. It is mainly relevant because Campo has a superb art program and the community doesn’t get to see this,” she said.

Moiceanu and other contributors are optimistic about the project’s success in the future. “I’m hoping that next year’s juniors and seniors will step up and take over the booth,” she said.  Moiceanu hopes that her dream of a community oriented booth will continue in the future. “I just want the artwork to get out. I simply want the community to see how many talented young artists there are in the school district,” she said.

Kaiser is confident that the booth next year will be more efficient and productive.  “I think that next year we will be more prepared and likely to auction off more pieces. I hope that the program continues and more student become involved, so that it will be here after we leave,” she said.

In addition to involving more pieces and auctioning off a larger quantity of artwork, Moiceanu and other volunteers are considering an addition. “I will have been at Campo for 10 years, so we talked about expanding the project and including Campo graduates’ artwork for a 10-year retrospect,” Langston explained.