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Student’s artwork tops sculpture

From the Spartanburg Herald-Journal: (Story by Zach Fox. Photos by Alex Hicks Jr. Click on the SHJ link above to see more photos.)

A Cleveland Academy of Leadership student got to see one of his drawings take shape in the form of a metal sculpture that will be installed in front of the school.
Metal sculptor Bob Doster has been at the school this week working on a sculpture as part of an arts grant from the Chapman Cultural Center. On Friday, he showed a group of first-graders the finished but unpainted sculpture. At the top of the piece, are faces of children, drawn and designed by first-grader Elijah Roseburgh. “I drew my friends because they're my best friends and they're nice to me,” he said, adding that he was very excited to see his design come to life. Doster worked with all grade levels during the past four days to create a sculpture fitting the school's motto “Leader in me.” “The kindergartners did the best job. They're fearless,” he said, adding that older students are more conscious of people watching them. He said the kindergartners were awed by the plasma cutter, the tool he uses to cut metal, and the act of cutting the metal. He said the kindergartners were the best at taking instruction and following his lead. Doster said that he began working with metal as a child, first picking up a torch when he was 8 years old. He's been working with students since 1975 and estimates he's sculpted with more than 100,000 students. Claire Louka, art teacher at Cleveland Academy, said she was excited to have a metal sculptor in the classroom because sculpting, especially with metal, is something most elementary schools don't get to do. “I wanted a metal sculptor because it's not something we can really do in class,” she said. Louka gathered her students together Friday afternoon and had to work to maintain their attention. On Fridays, students can get a little restless, she said. She had the class form a neat line at the door. Once they were quiet and lined-up, the students went outside to see the finished sculpture as the primer covering it dried. The sculpture weighs about 200 pounds and features a tiger and the number seven, symbolizing the seven habits of effective people which emphasizes leadership skills. The number seven also represents School District 7. Elijah beamed with pride when he saw his work at the top of the sculpture. “I like drawing a lot,” he said. “This is cool.”
Via: Spartanburg Herald Journal

S.C. teaching artists highlighted on Americans for the Arts blog

The South Carolina Arts Commission was honored to be asked to contribute to an Americans for the Arts blog salon on teaching artists. Many thanks to the four artists highlighted: Bob Doster of Lancaster, Patz Fowle of Hartsville, Francee Levin of Columbia, and Glenis Redmond of Greenville. (Image: Glenis Redmond with student)

Rich in Rewards: Why Teaching Artists Teach Glenis Redmond with studentWhy do some artists decide to teach? For many, the attraction is a desire to connect students to a creative process and to the larger arts community. For others, teaching fuels their work as artists. The South Carolina Arts Commission’s Roster of Approved Artists includes more than 900 artists who have been approved to conduct residencies and performances in schools. Many have been teaching for as long as they’ve been artists. We wanted to know more, so we asked four Roster artists about their experiences. Read the artist interviews here: http://blog.artsusa.org/2014/03/13/rich-in-rewards-why-teaching-artists-teach/


Sculptor Bob Doster’s impact on students profiled on Palmetto Scene

Artist Bob Doster of Lancaster is a fixture on the artist residency scene in schools around the state. He is a member of the South Carolina Arts Commission's Roster of Approved Artists, he was named an Individual Artist Fellow in 2006, and his work is in the State Art Collection. (Image: sculpture created at Indian Land High School.) From The Lancaster News:
Fort Mill High School sculptureOver the course of a career that spans some 30-plus years, Bob Doster has mentored, taught and encouraged more than 100,000 public school arts students throughout the Carolinas.
That is the premise of a feature on Doster which airs 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 16, on “Palmetto Scene,” an S.C. Educational Television (SCETV) production.
Locally, the program airs on Comporium cable on Channel 116. SCETV Producer John Bullington said Doster was profiled because of the impact he has made, and continues to make, in the lives of students. “Throughout the state, Bob Doster’s name is synonymous with his metal palmetto tree designs, but I thought it would be good to focus on his work in education,” Bullington said. Palmetto Scene is a new series that profiles, and shares, the special people and places that give South Carolina its flavor. “No one realizes the amount of stuff he (Doster) has done,” Bullington said. The almost five-minute profile focuses on how Doster works with students to help them design metal sculptures for their school grounds. Also featured in the segment are Lancaster, Indian Land and Fort Mill art teachers, Dianne Mahaffee, Teresa Petty and Susan Miller. “One thing I was impressed with is, he (Doster) is no nonsense,” Bullington said. “He works on deadlines because he wants students to know what ‘real-world’ experiences are like.” Doster said he stresses to budding artists the importance of honoring commitments on time, doing a quality job and sticking to budgets. Art may be art, but it is also a business. He also explained why working with students has become a passion to him. “I've always enjoyed the opportunity to let the students be creative on their own,” he said. “With the sculptures, particularly, they start on Monday with just an idea and by Thursday, they have a 3-D sculpture.” Doster said he has worked with school districts in both Carolinas that have “lots of money” for projects, as well as districts with little or no money. Regardless of circumstances, he encourages students to make the most of the resources they have. It’s vital, he said, for students to understand the importance of presenting a project of quality. “I take the talent I have, no matter how good or bad it is, and work with that,” he said laughing. “I tell them, ‘I don’t care how ugly it is because it has your name on it.’ I say this to motivate them to do their best.” Doster said he reminds students their work may not always be accepted. Even when it’s not, they should never give up. “The philosophy I bring is, ‘I expect you to do a grown-up level of work and for every 10 projects you go after, you feel successful if one gets selected,’” he said. Doster said the end result is always the same. “I just like seeing the kids’ faces light up when they accomplish something they couldn’t imagine four days earlier,” he said.
Via: The Lancaster News

East Aiken students transform bare wall into a musical mural

Artist Lynn Miller, a member of the South Carolina Arts Commission's Artist Roster, recently worked with fifth graders at East Aiken School of the Arts to create a mural for the music room. East Aiken is an Arts in Basic Curriculum Project site. Lynn Miller

“I like them to relate to the people who are on the mural,” Miller said. “Their participation is a wonderful experience for them. They become part of the school’s history, and later they can show what part of the work they did. There’s a lot of energy here.”
Read an article about the mural project in the Aiken Standard. The Artist Roster is an extensive list of artists in many disciplines who are available to presenters and to serve in arts education programs in South Carolina.  Any presenter -- from arts organizations to parks to recreation centers -- may search the roster to find artists. Many artists have work samples posted on the roster,  and many artists offer programs for a range of age groups, including adults. Find out more about the Artist Roster or search for artists. East Aiken School of the Arts article and photos: Rob Novit, The Aiken Standard