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Young at ♥Art

Art Creates Excellence summer camp taps into artistic expression of area youth.

by Marianne Lods, Executive Director, Millville Development Corporation

As usual, the summer months are flying past us, and we are all planning for the new school year and really hopeful that our children will be able to enjoy in-person learning and socializing again. Some of our kids did very well with virtual classes, while others struggled.

We here in the Millville Arts District were happy to provide the Art Creates Excellence experience to 41 children ages 7 to 18. The artistic curriculum revolved around the diverse communities that live side by side throughout our country.

The artists/teachers changed each week of the month-long art camp. Some of the cultures they explored were the Inuits of Alaska and Northwest who expressed their art in totem poles. They looked at Puerto Rican design and mask making for the traditional Carnivale each year. The local Nanticoke Lenni-Lanape Tribe artisans created dreamcatchers and ceremonial rattles made from small gourds, leather, and beads. The French impressionist and abstract artists and their use of light was a part of the learning process. The youngest children learned about people of Greece, both ancient and now, and far away countries like Australia and New Zealand along with the native Maori people.

One week of the program was held at Clay College where the students created ceramics depicting cultures of Latin and South America. Their clay pots were stylized by shapes and adorned with designs.

Our teen group learned from an Atlantic City Pop artist about “street art.” They created a mural design and then painted it on a “tunnel” wall in the first block of N. High Street.

On July 30, we hosted an art exhibit of much of the work that was created. Mayor Michael Santiago and Commissioners Udalovas and Cooper presented certificates of achievement to all the young artists.

We open registration for the ACE art camp in April of each year. Check our website and Facebook: Millville Glasstown Arts District for updates.