March 15, 2019
Eisenhower artwork installed at South Hills Village
An art display created by Eisenhower Elementary School students has been installed in the South Hills Village Mall. The artwork, located on the lower level near the former Sears store, features 280 brightly colored canvas tiles.
“We are so delighted at the way this turned out!” Jennifer Carroll, director of marketing and business development for South Hills Village, said. “We can't thank you enough for your engagement and enthusiasm concerning this project, and the willingness and excitement of your talented students about participating in this fun, colorful exhibit.”
South Hills Village approached Eisenhower Elementary with a potential location for an art display to cover the temporary wall surrounding the center court escalator renovation. The project was coordinated through Matthew Cosgrove, Eisenhower Elementary art teacher.
“Instead of having a plain barricade in the middle of the mall, they wanted to do something that would be fun and enjoyable where kids in the South Hills could contribute, and then come and enjoy with their families once it was installed,” Mr. Cosgrove said. “They decided to partner with the school that was right across the street!”
South Hills Village requested something colorful and unique and worked with Mr. Cosgrove to develop a "symbols of learning" theme that would inspire students to be creative. Each grade level had a different theme – kindergarten, handprints; first grade, shapes; second grade, numbers; third grade, letters; and fourth grade, three dimensional objects. Monochromatic colors were used throughout all of the tiles. The students looked at the work of Pop artist Jasper Johns to gain inspiration on repetition and paint application.
“Our students have been extremely happy with the fact that their work would be on display for the people who go to South Hills Village,” Mr. Cosgrove said. “They took a lot of pride in their work because of this.”
Mr. Cosgrove believes that showcasing student artwork beyond the school is important because it provides students with additional validation and value to their process and visual work.
“Opportunities like this are important to student artists and even more so to the younger artists because it gives them the idea that their work is important,” Mr. Cosgrove said. “Being able to see their artwork in a context that is not school-related makes it much more special.”
The art installation will remain up through the end of May. South Hills Village officials may relocate the installation to another part of the mall when the escalator project is complete.