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Local artist guides AMSA students in piecing together a school ‘Minnesota’ mural

Coleman working with a student(12/15/2023) Sixth graders at Anoka Middle School for the Arts have been connecting their arts experiences with social studies for the past two weeks, working with local ceramics artist, Elizabeth Coleman, on a project that will leave its mark on the school for years to come.

Coleman, who has a passion for creating murals, guided more than 250 students in the Ceramics and Sculpture course in creating tiles based on a Minnesota icon drawing they completed in Minnesota Studies, a social studies class that focuses on Minnesota history. AMSA ceramics teacher Terra Houltberg said the plan is to select a number of the student’s titles to create a mural in a grid formation that would be a permanent installation at the school. View photos of students working on their ceramic tiles.

“The most rewarding thing about being here is seeing the students engage with and focus on that 5x5 inch world that they are creating,” Coleman said. “They lose what is going on in their day and look calm while working.”

Sixth graders Violet Sullivan and Jazmyn Krzmarzick chose to feature their favorite Minnesota sports teams and are working on the tiles that celebrate the Twins and the Wild, respectively.

“I like doing this project because I get to leave my mark at the school,” Krzmarzick said.