Leaving a Mark on OLHMS

OLHMS Students start work on their sidewalk art

OLHMS Students start work on their sidewalk art

Oak Lawn-Hometown Middle School students took their art to the sidewalks this week, using chalk pastels to create inspiration for all who enter the school.

“The idea is based on the centuries-old art form of street painting.  In the 16th century, Italy artists seeking patrons used chalk pastels on the plazas to draw images of the Madonna.  These street painters were called I Madonnari (painters of the Madonna), and an artistic tradition was born.  In the early years of Sidewalk Art Day, the event was held on a Saturday and was open to the entire district and community.  Over the last couple of years, it has become an event focused solely on OLHMS,” said Art Teacher, Mara Petraitis.

The sidewalk art day was started in 2005. Each student goes through an application process to get their design approved, and only about 30 are allowed.

“These students have the opportunity and privilege of showcasing their artistic abilities and talents in a unique way.  Students are able to create a piece of art on a larger scale that contributes to making a temporary art gallery in front of OLHMS for all to enjoy,” said Petraitis.

Once complete the designs are sealed with floor wax to withstand the elements.