What is Urban Art?

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What is Urban Art?

December 3, 2018 – This is an interview with Ms. Montemayor, 8th grade counselor and former art teacher, who started an after school art club at O. Henry this year.

Q: What is Urban Art?

A:  Urban Art is a group or class that creates public pieces of art, but, more than that, it’s a safe place for kids to come after school and to be themselves.

Q:  What made you want to take the lead in Urban Art?

A: So, I’m an art therapist and I do something called community art therapy. I believe in making public pieces of art based on where participants make art, but, more importantly, become stakeholders in the community through art.

Q: In your opinion has urban art been a success?

A: I think it’s really been a positive success because you can have any skill to join. I think the only downfall is we didn’t receive any funding for materials this year, so my challenge this year is that there is no funding for it, so I don’t have any money to make a mural. So, we are really focusing on just having a safe place and having a creative place so we can express ourselves.

Update:  Urban Art may receive some funding.

Q:  Do you think Urban Art can improve in any way?

A: I think Urban Art can improve if it gets funded. Value the power of art and value the importance of it. Value the time for it, too. That’s how it can be improved.

Q:  How did you come up with this idea?

A: So I came up with this idea basically many years ago while I was working with kids after school with painted murals. I have switched over to mosaic which allowed more people to participate.

Q: How many community art pieces have you done?

A: At least 20-25, depending on range and size. My largest is 1200 square ft. and then I have small ones like the one behind a water fountain, little ones in the cafeteria, and really big ones on 10th street, so they just range in size.

Q: How many years have you been creating these works of art?

A: I’ve been making community art for 20 years. I think the first mural I did was the first year I was a teacher and I see how much they have improved and how I’ve gotten the systems down.