Carmel science students to paint chairs in competition
By Adam Aasen
When you are looking for high school students to create artwork, you might not think to look at the robotics club. But local artists said they’ve found it to be a great fit.
“We talk about left brain and right brain, and I think these kids have a lot of both,” said artist Jerry Points, owner of Eye on Art Gallery.
The June 14 Gallery Walk through the Carmel Arts & Design District will feature beautifully painted chairs created by the TechHOUNDS, the robotics club of Carmel High School. District artists will work with these science whizzes for a contest that features $100 cash prizes.
This year, the students will work with local artists such as Points, Susan Mauck of French Bleu, and ArtsSplash artists Bob Shade, Laura Liotti and Anna Afshar.
Shade said these students have natural ability when it comes to art.
“They didn’t originally think they had artistic ability until we worked with them last year,” he said. “They discovered all of this imagination inside of them and they created some really great works.”
The Adirondack chairs are designed and constructed by Carmel students in teacher Zachary Bonewit’s Manufacturing Processes class. The chairs are then painted by about 10 robotics students.
Club adviser George Giltner said the project teaches the students important lessons.
“The students really enjoy the experience because it is a little different than what they are used to, it takes them out of their ‘comfort zone’ a little bit and have them focus on art instead of just putting metal together to build a robot or writing programming code or wiring circuits for the robot,” Giltner said. “Engineering is defined by using math and science to solve problems but some argue that art is part of that equation as well. That is why I like to expose my students to this project. I think it exercises their mind differently than what they are used to.”
Sponsors such as Pedcor, Old Town Tavern, Wine and Canvas, the City of Carmel and others have pledged $500 to purchase these chairs and support this event. Judges will vote on their favorite chairs at the June 14 Gallery Walk and all winners receive $100 and a free art lesson from Mauck.
But why paint chairs?
Special Events Coordinator for the city Stephanie Marshall said, “(It’s a fun way to) ring in the summer with bright and beautiful colors.”