UC San Diego News Center


Exhibit to Showcase Preuss Students’ Sustainable Art

Recycled magazines, eco-friendly ink and a rolling pin may not sound like your typical art supplies, but these are a few of the tools students at The Preuss School UCSD have used to create sustainable works of art, which will be on display at the ART: Sustain It! exhibit Saturday, June 9 at Space 4 Art in downtown San Diego.

The exhibit is the culmination of a yearlong art and sustainability project created by artist Barbara Gothard and funded as part of the Kenneth A. Picerne Foundation’s Artist Outreach Project. Gothard developed the project with Barak Smith, chair of the fine arts department at Preuss, an award-winning charter middle and high school for motivated, low-income students whose parents have not graduated from college. Their goal was to enhance students’ studio art experiences through the use of eco-friendly products and a focus on what Gothard refers to as the five “R’s”: Recycle, Reuse, Reclaim, Repurpose and Respect.

“Reusing materials stimulates creativity while focusing on the environment as a key element of our future,” said Gothard. “This encourages innovation and analytical thinking skills, which are transferable to the students’ subject areas.”

The exhibit will include paper mosaic self-portraits, watercolor pencil drawings, hand-made paper, mono-prints, watercolor paintings, optical illusion drawings, found object sculptures and cardboard relief sculptures. According to Smith, sustainability projects, which utilize free discarded materials, are perfect for these times when the budget for art is being cut at most schools.

He added: “This artwork is a reflection of the changes in the world around us—sustainability is a very contemporary theme.”

The exhibit will be from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday, June 9 at Space 4 Art galleries, 326 15th Street in the East Village of downtown San Diego. There will be a reception from 6 to 9 p.m. featuring spoken word and music by Preuss performing arts students. Student artwork will be offered for sale with a percentage going to support the Preuss School Fine Arts Department.

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