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Four student films named finalists

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Four student films made it to the finals in the International Youth Silent Film Festival. Three cheers for the filmmakers!

You can see the films at the Hollywood Theatre 

Wednesday, May 22, at 7 pm
Tucker Gordon '13 (Fetch)
Sadie Yudkin '14 (Picnic)
Tapwe Sandaine '14 (Jealousy)

Thursday, May 23, at 7 p.m.
Casey Currey-Wilson '13 & Terrance Sun '13 (Top Secret)

March 12 US concert canceled

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 Stay tuned for information about rescheduling this event.

Word & Hand brings together student artists & writers from CG & Wilsonville HS

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 Students from Catlin Gabel and Wilsonville High School are working together on a groundbreaking program, Word and Hand. Its aim is to build new creative skills in young artists and writers by having them responding to each other’s work. Four student writers and four students who are visual artists from each school are paired with their opposite in the other school. In this pilot program funded by the William T. Colville Foundation, the students learn how artists and writers can derive inspiration from each other, and how that unleashes a new area of creativity that most of them—and most mature artists and writers—have never experienced.

 
Word and Hand projects have taken place in the past 12 years, but only between adult artists and writers. This is the first time it’s been tried with high school students, who send their poem or artwork anonymously to their partner. The partner then sends a work in response, and the cycle continues. Each student keeps a journal of the process. The last exchange takes place on March 22.
 
The first time these students will get to meet their creative partner will be at an opening of their work at Portland’s Blackfish Gallery in late May or early June (date TBA). The exhibition will be paired with a catalog about the project, featuring all the students’ work. The Colville Foundation hopes to write a curriculum for other high schools based on this pilot project.
 
The results are phenomenal, says Catlin Gabel art teacher Dale Rawls, who guides the project along with English teacher Ginia King. He says that his students have made great conceptual leaps in thinking about the way their work communicates to others, and how they can make their writing or artwork say what they want it to. They are challenged creatively and intuitively by Word and Hand, and they are excited by those challenges.
 
Dale and Ginia’s counterparts at Wilsonville High School are art teacher Christopher Shotola-Hardt and English teacher Jay Rischel. The project was the concept of sculptor Steve Tilden, who has done Word and Hand projects (as has Dale), and is on the board of the Colville Foundation.

 

 

 

Video: Diversity Conference a cappella performance, "Shosholoza"

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"Priority Male," the male section of the Catlin Gabel a cappella choir, performed the South African freedom song "Shosholoza" at the Upper School Diversity Conference on February 27, 2013. The choir is directed by Charles Walsh.

"Spelling Bee" musical photo gallery

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Upper School production of "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee"

 Click on any photo to enlarge it, download it, or start the slideshow.

19 students receive a record-breaking 45 awards from the Portland Metro Scholastic Art Competition

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Students were honored in photography, sculpture, drawing, painting, and mixed media

Congratulations to the following Upper School students who helped Catlin Gabel sweep the competition! Several students won more than one award.

Xander Balwit, Matt Junn, Fiona Noonan, Maya Rait, and Zoe Schlanger earned Gold Key honors.

Matt Junn won Silver Key honors for his entire portfolio and for individual pieces.

Other Silver Key honors were awarded to works by Katie Fournier, Max Luu, Hayle Meyerhoff, Nadya Okamoto, Kristin Qian, Craig Robbins, Hannah Rotwein, Zoe Schlanger, Alexandra van Alebeek.

Honorable mention recipients are Violeta Alvarez, Anna Dodson, Adele English, Kelsey Hurst, Matt Junn, Kallisti Kenaley-Lundberg, Thomas Newlands, Fiona Noonan, Craig Robbins, Hannah Rotwein, Zoe Schlanger, and Alexandra van Alebeek.

Next stop regionals, followed by the national competition.

Tom Cramer '78 artwork named best painting of the year in Portland

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Willamette Week article, January 2013

St. George and Dragon 2012 Photo & Video Gallery

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The class of 2017 tore it up!

Click on any image to enlarge it, start the slide show, or download. 

Our Inspired Teachers: Dale Rawls

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Every day Catlin Gabel teachers inspire their students. 16 faculty members talk about how they came to teaching—and what they love about their craft

From the Autumn 2012 Caller

Dale Rawls, MS art

Bachelor's in art, Portland State University. Master's in education, Lewis & Clark College. At CGS since 1989.

The summer of 1973 I was studio assistant to Ray Grimm, who was head of ceramics at PSU. One of the pieces I was excited to help make was a pot made with 50 pounds of clay. Ray explained to me that we would center and throw this big, low, wide pot together.
 
Before we began Ray said, “Watch my hands and do what I do.” We dry-centered the big mound of clay until it looked like a low cake about to rise. We used our fists to open up the center and move the clay out to the edges. I still can hear the rhythmic pulse of our fists against the clay as the potter’s wheel turned slowly. Ray reached for his sponge in the water. I was surprised to feel my hand wet with my own sponge rinsing down the clay. Ray then began to compress the giant rim of clay that would soon become the walls of the pot. He began to push in with the heels of his hands. I felt myself inhale and hold my breath at the same time Ray did. The piece grew as we compressed the walls and we shaped the form.
 
We said nothing for quite some time. Ray handed me the end of a long cutting wire. We cut the pot and lifted the finished piece off the wheel. Ray looked up with just a smudge of clay on his forehead and said—matter-of-factly—that now it was time for lunch.
 
I had never had an experience like this before.
 

That summer I realized I wanted to be like Ray: a teacher who continued to make art, and whose work was a reflection of his life. He has continued to be with me when I enter my studio, get on my bike, or work with students making art. His life, his love of problem solving, and his emphasis on process and creativity is a legacy that I hope my students carry into their lives.   

Our Inspired Teachers: Jennifer Marcus '73

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Every day Catlin Gabel teachers inspire their students. 16 faculty members talk about how they came to teaching—and what they love about their craft

From the Autumn 2012 Caller

Jennifer Marcus '73, BS & 1st grade woodshop

Bachelor's in art, Mills College. At CGS since 2004.

Twenty-two years ago, when my oldest daughter was attending preschool in Los Angeles, I responded to a flyer to open up the woodworking shed. I had a degree in fine arts, built my own looms, and had taken child psychology at Mills College. I’d even entertained the idea of becoming a teacher. So, some simple woodworking with a bunch of four-year-olds sounded like fun. It was.

Through those students and all the ones who have come after I have learned to use woodshop as a way to help children build not just wheelbarrows, sailing ships, and airports but pathways for how to think, plan, and empower.
 
Opening that first shed was like discovering a magician’s closet. The tools and materials had great power and had to be used properly. The children and I questioned, tinkered, and embraced the process of investigating wood and what it could do, what it could become. I learned the benefits of patience with their processing as well as patience with myself. I encouraged them to think out loud: “I wonder what would happen if. . . . ”
 
The following year I became the official woodworking teacher at the school. I conducted workshops for teachers and established woodworking programs to share my teaching philosophy: greet every child respectfully with an open mind for their way of thinking, their interpretations, and their strengths, and have confidence in their ability to solve problems in ways that are creative and astonishing.
 
After moving back to Portland, I created “Woodworking with Children,” providing meaningful woodworking experiences to as many children as possible. I am always honored to participate in their journey of invention and resourceful thinking. I feel so fortunate to be a part of the faculty at Catlin Gabel, a place that still values a hands-on, tactile learning-enriched program for young students. 

Our Inspired Teachers: Nance Leonhardt

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Every day Catlin Gabel teachers inspire their students. 16 faculty members talk about how they came to teaching—and what they love about their craft

 From the Autumn 2012 Caller

Nance Leonhardt, US art

Bachelor's in fine arts, radio, TV, and film, Evergreen State College. Master's in teaching, Seattle University. At CGS since 2007.

 

I became a teacher because of my classmate Steve Parkey. I must have spent more than 75% of my young life with Steve, and the only thing I could say about him was that he wore a lot of brown.
 
Everything changed during my sophomore year when I enrolled in a graphic design class. My teacher was a working artist (known by her last name, Hall), the epitome of cool, who wore chic French clothing and oversized tribal jewelry. One day in class I heard her shriek, “Oh, Mr. Parkey, how MARVELOUS!” She pulled us around to see his illustration—a Boeing commuter heading for work in a series of panels where the vehicle shifted from a pogo stick to a 747. Hall pointed out the clever mutation of lines, the way the drawing seemed to accelerate across the page and come to life. In that moment, she was able to tease out the rare and beautiful in Steve Parkey. He morphed from brown to golden and glittered in our eyes.
 
Under Hall’s tutelage I learned how to silkscreen, solder, and edit video. She fed us a steady diet of new techniques and mind-contorting design prompts. Each person’s solution was cause for celebration in Hall’s studio, and I saw her greatest creative work in those moments.
 
When I reflect on my years in the profession, everything links back to my days with Hall. I teach the same topics, I occasionally wear chic French clothes, etc.—but her imprint is most evident in my relationships with students. I’ve been proud to send students to USC Film School or see them launch creative careers. However, it’s those whose artistic brilliance may be less evident, those who land in careers far afield of what they’ve done in my classes that call me to teach each day. They keep in touch, reminding me that I’ve glimpsed the golden in them, and that is divine. 
 

 

Creative Arts Center groundbreaking photo gallery

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A grand celebration!

On a beautiful afternoon in early October, we broke ground for the Creative Arts Center for Middle and Upper School students. The building will open fall 2013. For more information about the project, please visit www.catlin.edu/artscenter.

Click on any photo below to enlarge image and view pictures as a slide show.

Catlin Gabel receives $200,000 grant from M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust

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Funds bolster instructional technology in the planned Creative Arts Center

Catlin Gabel School has received a grant of $200,000 from the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust. The grant will support instructional technology in the school’s planned Creative Arts Center.

Groundbreaking for the new building will be held October 4. Students in grades 6–12 will experience an innovative use of space for interdisciplinary work in visual and media arts, theater, and music when the Creative Arts Center opens in the fall of 2013. Funds from the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust grant will be used for computers and recording equipment for the music laboratory, theater sound systems, and state-of-the-art LED stage lighting that will greatly reduce the building’s energy consumption. Additionally, the grant will support servers, networking, classroom projectors, and advanced theater projection.

The $6.9 million Creative Arts Center was designed by renowned architect Brad Cloepfil, of Allied Works Architecture. Funds for the building’s construction have come primarily from donors to the project, as well as grants. Cloepfil has designed notable museum and creative spaces worldwide, from the Contemporary Art Museum in St. Louis to the adaptive reuse of Manhattan’s Museum of Arts and Design on Columbus Circle. “Catlin Gabel’s project for the new arts building means a tremendous amount to me,” said Cloepfil. “To build on that beautiful campus, with the legacy of great architecture by John Storrs and Thomas Hacker, is a true gift. We have worked with faculty and students to create a building that will be a beautiful catalyst for creativity, not only in the visual and performing arts, but for the entire curriculum of the school. It truly is a laboratory, one that will encourage the students to develop new ideas and forms of expression.”

CREATIVITY IS CENTRAL TO CATLIN GABEL’S PHILOSOPHY
“The arts are a core of Catlin Gabel’s philosophy and are key to a well-rounded education. In no other discipline do critical thinking, problem-solving, predicting outcomes, analyzing, re-assessing, and creativity come together as they do in the arts. The intellectual challenges posed by visual art, music, and theater facilitate learning in all other disciplines. These vital pursuits help make our children more thoughtful, interesting, and well-rounded—and create a life of more profundity and beauty for all of us.” –Lark Palma, head of school

THE M.J. MURDOCK CHARITABLE TRUST
The M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust, based in Vancouver, Washington, was created by the will of Melvin J. (Jack) Murdock, a co-founder of Tektronix, Inc., and established in 1975. The trust aims to enrich the quality of life in the Pacific Northwest by providing grants and enrichment programs to organizations seeking to strengthen the region’s educational, spiritual, and cultural base in creative and sustainable ways.

Video: Pirates of Penzance rap and song

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The class of 2016 presented a dress rehearsal of Gilbert & Sullivan's "Pirates of Penzance" in late May 2012 before heading out on their trip to the San Juans. Here's their original rap introduction, and a rousing opening pirates' song.

 

Collins Foundation awards $200,000 for Creative Arts Center

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A big step closer to goal!

We are proud to announce that the Collins Foundation grant of $200,000 brings the total raised for the Middle and Upper School arts building to $4.27 million, or 62 percent of our total $6.9 million goal.

“The community support for this project is exhilarating,” said Lark Palma. “As one of the premier foundations in Oregon, the Collins Foundation’s endorsement of our quest to provide an innovative hub for creativity is most gratifying.”

The school must raise $1.25 million more to reach the magic 80 percent mark when we can break ground.

Stay tuned!

Read the article in the Oregonian.