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Through a child’s eyes: Artwork of ETSU Little Bucs goes on display

Rex Barber • Mar 25, 2013 at 9:29 AM

Looking for an interpretation of van Gogh’s “The Starry Night” to hang above the mantle? Maybe a papier-maché octopus to adorn your living room?

These creations and many more in the exhibit titled “Through the Eyes of Children,” will be on display at Slocumb Galleries on the campus of East Tennessee State University beginning today. Everything was made by children in the Little Buccaneers Early Childhood Laboratory Program (Little Bucs). This day care facility is for children ages 3 months to 5 years. Each child there participated in the artwork.

Nikki Dolan, program coordinator for Little Bucs, said the children had been taking photographs in the classroom, and that developed into this week’s art exhibit, which is also a fundraiser.

A reception and silent auction will be held Thursday from 4-7 p.m., the final day of the exhibit. Art in the gallery can be bid on during the entire week. Funds raised will be used for playground improvements for Little Bucs.

“We have just an array of things,” Dolan said of the kind of art the children made. “It started off with, like I said, some photography and moved into some canvas painting. We’ve done some tile mosaics, some papier-maché and all kinds of fun things. ... ”

Students and staff who work at Little Bucs and parents whose children attend there see the kids’ artwork all the time.

“This is the first attempt that we’ve made at creating some kind of art exhibit that’s for the community,” Dolan said. “There’s a lot to see.”

Some of the kids are replicating “The Starry Night” as a group project.

Old tables have been decorated with mosaics and chairs have been painted with various colors. Mason jars have been re-appropriated as candle holders. Patters of colorful needlework has been stitched into fabrics.

That papier-maché octopus even has suction cups attached to its tentacles.

“They’re really excited about showing pieces to their family,” Dolan said.

The galleries are open weekdays from 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.

The winning bids in the silent auction will be announced on Thursday and the new owners may pick up their works of art. ETSU First Lady Donna Noland will be the guest of honor at the reception.

All artwork in the exhibit is available for acquisition. Smaller works may be purchased through donation while the larger, collaborative pieces are up for bid at the silent auction.

Tickets for the reception are $5, but children 12 and under may attend free.

Little Bucs is part of the Center of Excellence in Early Childhood Learning and Development within the Claudius G. Clemmer College of Education. The program serves as a child care facility for the children of ETSU students and adjunct faculty members.

The Slocumb Galleries are located in Ernest C. Ball Hall along Sherrod Drive. Handicapped access and parking spaces are available.

For more information, to purchase tickets or arrange special assistance for those with disabilities, call Dolan at 439-7549 or email dolann@etsu.edu.

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