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Mancos students explore social justice through art

Mancos High School artists craft issues-based murals

Mancos High School students are calling attention to social justice in an upcoming exhibit at the end of the month.

It’s part of the Mancos Creative District’s #weallbelong project, which aims to spark a conversation about belonging, immigration and community through the arts. The show will feature more than 20 pieces of artwork from the students, who all chose a different social issue to depict in mural form.

“Our youth have something to tell us and took advantage of the opportunity to voice their thoughts and experiences,” said Mancos schools art instructor Alys Hansen.

The project was funded partly by an Arts in Society grant.

“For as long as art has existed, it has been used to express opinions, share ideas and emotions, spread information, and influence others,” Hansen said. “Mancos High School students were asked to choose an issue that they cared deeply about and could create a large mural about, with the hope that their work could influence or inform our world.”

Students chose topics including pollution and environmental concerns, racism, depression, bullying, suicide, LGBTQ rights, poverty, animal and human rights, technology-related depression, homelessness, and substance abuse and addiction.

They then researched the issues and spent about two months creating murals, which are about 4 feet by 4 feet.

The exhibit is scheduled for 2 to 5 p.m. Feb. 29 at the Mancos Community Center. After the exhibit, the artwork will be placed on outdoor framework at the Mancos Public Library through the end of the school year.

ealvero@the-journal.com

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