As part of the King School Visiting Artists Program, artist Jeilla Gueramain kicked off her residency this week with a lower school assembly during which she discussed her artistic inspiration and process.
The King School Visiting Artists Program is an opportunity to enrich, enhance and inspire the visual arts students’ experience at King, providing them with an immersive experience.
On Monday, Gueramain presented to students and faculty in the lower school gymnasium. In her presentation, Gueramain demonstrated how she creates three-dimensional sculptures out of found objects and fabric, which she later combines into large-scale multifaceted installations.
Gueramain shared that while she has been a professional artist since 2011, she always enjoyed creating art as a child. Her artistic focus has been aimed at creating works reminiscent of forts made by children that inspire exploration. She added that her current inspiration stemmed from experiences with her own children and items of significance shared by other parents.
“When my kids were younger, I’d make them things, and people would give me things, a special blanket or item, and I’d turn it into a gift,” Gueramain told the students.
After the presentation, students walked through an art room where Guearmain had been working for the previous week. The space had been partially transformed into a dream-like environment with colorful lights, woven patterns, crocheted vines, and furry pink trees. The unfinished part of the room was filled with bags of fabric, yarn, and other sculptural materials that the students will use to complete the space.
During their art period later in the day, Guearmain and Grade 5 students discussed materials, demonstrated techniques, and helped them brainstorm ideas to add to the installation. Plans for shipwrecks, buried treasures, jellyfish, coral reefs, and even a dragon quickly arose from the young creative minds.
Grade 4 will contribute to the space on January 10, and the installation will conclude on March 31 with Grade 3.
“We want our students to have these rich experiences with as many types of artists as possible to learn firsthand,” said upper school Art and Design teacher Ran LaPolla as she explained the importance of the Visiting Artist Program.
LaPolla’s Global Art History class also met with Gueramain while she was installing her art. She added that middle and upper school students will meet other artists later in the year.