This week, our students had the great opportunity of visiting the Kimball Art Center in Park City, Utah. They are featuring a traveling exhibit by the amazing glassworks artist, Chihuly. We learned a lot about his life and process, and then viewed some spectacular pieces of art.
We learned that Chihuly studies glassblowing skills in the United States, then in Venice, Italy, from great Italian masters. He now has a workshop in Seattle, where he employs many artists who work together to create a wide variety of glassblown and sculptural pieces.
We saw an installation entitled “Laguna Murano Chandelier” which he created while living and studying in Venice. Also included in the exhibit were vases, bowls and giant-sized bottle stoppers. Our favorite pieces were the “piccolo” vases. This series of 30 small vases were colorful, and each had their own unique personality.
After viewing the exhibit, our tour guide took us to a workshop where we created our own versions of colorful, sculptural work.
We always love the opportunity to view beautiful and significant artwork and this exhibit was truly a memorable experience.
This week, some of our upper level girls had the opportunity to attend the world-famous Shakespeare Festival in Cedar City, Utah. While we’ve known of its reputation for producing great repertory shows every year, we learned this year the great reputation it has among actors and those in theater production. We had the opportunity to talk to several actors, but one in particular told us of her journey to this venue, and how she auditioned for eight years before getting parts this year!
We had the opportunity to watch six productions this year–two Shakespeare plays and four non-Shakespeare plays: The Merry Wives of Windsor, Titus Andronicus, Mary Stuart, Scapin, To Kill a Mockingbird and Les Miserables. We enjoyed all of them. Over the summer, our Shakespeare class has been studying the Shakespeare plays in preparation for what we would see, so we could appreciate the stories and the writings by the Bard. We were each partial to one play or the other, but by far, our favorite was Les Miserables. One student said: “I really felt connected to the characters and felt what they were feeling.”
In addition to the plays, we had the opportunity to participate in a costume seminar, a props seminar, and a backstage tour. Also, we attended the Greenshow–a short entertaining song and dance presentation before each Shakespeare play. We were very busy and spent what little time we had to finish homework and projects for the quarter.
Overall, we had a great experience visiting Cedar City and the great Shakespeare Festival. It is an experience we will remember for a long time. We were so glad to spend it with each other and our teachers, Kelli and Jill, and our assistant program director, Allie. Thanks to them for planning and preparing this awesome trip for us.
This morning, La Europa students, teachers and staff traveled downtown to attend Salt Lake’s beautiful Tracy Aviary. Located within Liberty Park, this has been a great place for families to enjoy a bit of wildlife in the city.
Tracy Aviary has tropical birds from all over the Americas as well as birds that hail from our own state. We saw many birds from emus, egrets and eagles, to parrots, peacocks and pelicans. We learned that owls can indeed fly silently, but are not particularly wise. Also, we watched a bird show and learned that the red-crested turaco eats poison berries to make itself taste bad to predators.
Tracy Aviary also has beautiful grounds. The trees are large and beautiful and shade the flower-lined walkways. We enjoyed a warm, sunny morning to spend time away from school and to be outside.
For our Friday field trip this week, we drove up to Park City and visited several art galleries and museums. Park City is a town with a real focus on the arts. Every year, they hold the Sundance Film Festival. In addition, Deer Valley Resort has a partnership with the Utah Symphony and hold outdoor summer concerts there. We had the opportunity to visit some galleries and get a feel for the culture that is Park City.
We visited Kimball Art Center, where they had two really nice exhibits. One was pieces in wood, fiberglass and resin, entitled “Color”. They were indeed colorful and showed a complex variety of color combinations. We also saw an exhibit of wire mesh sculptures. They were amazing, and showed how an industrial material could be formed and molded into very beautiful organic and flowing shapes.
We also spent a bit of time walking along the historic streets of Park City and stepping into a few more of the wide variety of galleries. Some were photography, some painting, and others had all kinds of sculptures. It was a beautiful summer morning and teachers, students and staff all enjoyed spending time with each other, and having the opportunity to view some great art.
The famous Vermeer paining of the Girl with the Pearl Earring is an example of the art La Europa students are assessing in this summer’s Art History class.
La Europa students have a wide variety of summer school classes to choose from that are taught by certified teachers in a regular school format, not online. Summer school classes include Eastern Philosophy, History in Film, Shakespeare and Media Literacy to name a few. For those science-minded students, the usual Zoology, Physics and Biology are offered. And of course we have our regular offering of art electives including Songwriting, Dance, Digital Photography and Choir.
At La Europa, school is always interactive and challenging.
During the summer, the teachers of LEA like to take advantage of the many opportunities in the Salt Lake Valley. Today, we went on a field trip to the Hill Aerospace Museum. Part of the Hill Air Force Base, the museum has an extensive collection of planes and other military gear from WWI, WWII, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and the more recent wars in the Middle East. We were very impressed with how many planes they had! We saw an F-16 and other fighter planes, bombers and re-fueling planes, and many types of helicopters. We sat in a troop transport helicopter and learned that something seemingly simple as an ejector seat is not so simple after all! Our favorite was the “Blackbird” stealth reconnaissance plane that was very elegant and much bigger than one would expect.
While we were there, the Air Base conducted a command change ceremony. We were impressed with the pomp and circumstance that accompanied this ceremony, and some students had the opportunity to meet the outgoing Commander.
The museum was staffed by veterans who knew so much about the planes and were so willing to teach us the anatomy of a plane and how things worked. After seeing all the exhibits in the museum, we went outside and ate our lunch in the shade of the wings of a giant troop transport plane, then returned to LEA.
Some of you may know that La Europa Academy has a partnership with ITA (Intermountain Therapy Animals), which is a local non-profit agency dedicated to the idea that animals help people heal emotionally and physically. Every Sunday, we have a visit from either Carmen or Lily Rose and their handlers. We feel so lucky to have them come–we love to play with them and cuddle them!
Last week ITA held their annual fundraiser at a downtown art gallery. Our Art Studio class created artwork to be auctioned off at the event. We based our pieces on the theme, “Summer Pawstice”, since it was held on June 21–summer solstice. It was fun to do paintings combining the two themes of pets and astronomy. We loved to be able to use our artistic talents to give back to the community by helping ITA raise money.
Here are some of the pictures our students made.