Community art at home

Community art at home

April 21, 2020

Sarah Stojevich, an Associate in Fine Arts (AFA) degree student at Anoka-Ramsey Community College has a passion for painting. When she first heard about the Coon Rapids Campus mural project in a painting and drawing class, she couldn’t pass up being involved.

Sarah became part of the mentee program where she has been working alongside artist Greta McLain, who is leading the project with faculty and other students. As a mentee, Sarah has helped create the concept for the mural, organize workshops to ensure the community is part of the project and paint the mural itself.

“I’ve enjoyed getting to meet and know some of the other students involved in this project, as well as those that I’ve met from the workshops,” shared Sarah.

The chosen mural concept, My Story, Your Story, Our Story was set to be unveiled on the Coon Rapids Campus in early May. While plans for install and reveal celebration are still unknown due to the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic and campus closure, the painting has continued.

“When my self-portrait painting was chosen to be included in the mural, I was given the opportunity to paint that portion myself,” said Sarah. “The logistics of where and when I would get to paint were never really determined until the school had to shut down. Greta asked me if I would be comfortable working on it at home, so I picked up the panels from her studio and brought them home with me.”

With premixed paints, supplies and two large panels in hand, Sarah began the process of painting from her home. To help envision what the painting process typically looks like, watch this footage by CTN Coon Rapids from the community and alumni painting workshop held before the closure. 

“I didn’t think about how I would actually paint the pieces until I got home and had to find space to hang up a section to work on. The only space within my home that had a wall large enough to hang it was in my stairwell.”

 Sarah painting mural at home with the help of her son

By bringing the project home, Sarah was able to make her family (even her cats) part of the process. 

Outside of the mural project, Sarah misses being on campus, visiting with her teachers and fellow students and taking her daily walks through the Great River Gallery looking that the rotating collections of art on display.

Eventually, the mural will be displayed proudly on the Coon Rapids Campus for the entire community to enjoy. Sarah is proud to get to be part of the project and part of the story behind it.

“I hope that when students (current and future) see the mural that they see a piece of themselves represented within it and feel welcomed at Anoka-Ramsey Community College,” Sarah said. “Anoka-Ramsey is a diverse school, both in the students who attend and the wide range of degrees offered, and I think the mural does a good job representing that diversity.”

 

This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.