Student Art Shines at Cultivar by Karen Kennedy, CSG Board Member

Posted by on Nov 20, 2017 | Comments Off on Student Art Shines at Cultivar by Karen Kennedy, CSG Board Member

Student Art Shines at Cultivar by Karen Kennedy, CSG Board Member

This past Sunday, a spirited group of donors gathered at Cultivar to celebrate youth, leadership, art and the garden experience. The evening featured delicious food from Mas Tapas, lively music by the Olivarez Trio, a silent auction of Harvest of the Month student artwork, and a stunning gallery of Youth Photo Stories. Cultivar benefitted City Schoolyard Garden’s Youth Leadership Corps, a central element of our Youth Leadership Program aimed at building confident, engaged and healthy youth. (Left: Makayla, student artwork docent & Joshua, curator. Right: Cultivar program.)

(Left: Rick Olivarez and his trio. Right: Tomas Rahal and team bringing out dessert.)


Since early 2016, City Schoolyard Garden has partnered with Buford Middle School art teacher, Desmond Cormier, to spotlight student art work in our Harvest of the Month posters. Each month, Mr. Cormier engages 7th and 8th grade students to create a painting or drawing of that month’s featured fruit or vegetable. CSG hopes that, in seeing their art displayed in schools and businesses across Charlottesville, students are encouraged to take pride in their work and take ownership over the program. At Cultivar, twelve beautiful pieces were included in our silent auction— from watercolor turnips and mixed greens to color-pencil zucchini and pastel sugar snap peas. We hope they bring splendor and charm to their new homes. (Turnip Image by Calea Sholes as an 8th Grader at Buford)


Cultivar also featured a gallery of Youth Photo Stories created by our Buford Garden Aides. Each story reflects an aide’s personal experience managing the Buford garden during the 2016-17 school year. Portraits were taken of and by the students and were combined with key words and quotes to create unique art pieces.

(Left: One of the student Photo Story Images. Right: Guests checking out the student video with Manny & Makayla sharing about their garden experience.)

(Left: Bill Lanzana, Board member hanging the Photo Story Images before the event. Right: Guests checking out the silent auction.)


Garden Aides are another component of CSG’s Youth Leadership Program which integrates leadership opportunities into student garden experiences from elementary school through twelfth grade. CSG also employs four summer and schoolyear program interns to maintain our gardens, support summer programming, and build job skills. Through activities and programs encouraging responsibility, independence, and choice, CSG actively works to build student leaders in the Charlottesville City School community and beyond.  (Garden Aide Photos)


In this season of gratitude, CSG extends our warmest gratitude for all that attended or helped make Cultivar possible– Tomas Rahal of Mas, the Olivarez Trio, our student artists, and most importantly, our guests, who showed up on a chilly November evening to support CSG and our Youth Leadership Program. Thank you.