Dan Vesey/Deb Munson Art Show

PSD plans for greater exposure of visual arts education

In April 2018 the Puyallup School District will sponsor the annual Honoring Cultures Diversity Celebration and its annual Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) Showcase during the Washington State Spring Fair. The unique partnership between the district and the fair has provided families with greater access to the spring fair and has given the district an opportunity to feature students and their accomplishments in a popular and well-attended venue.

For over a decade the Puyallup School District has been featured in several locations each day of the spring fair. The Hobby Hall has housed student artwork and writing in response to Multicultural Read Aloud books and 21st Century Literature. Student musicians and other performers have been scheduled on the Showcase Stage for one entire day. At the same time, hundreds of students have participated in the STEM Showcase.

The school district is planning to take greater advantage of this annual opportunity to highlight student achievement by featuring student artists in the annual Dan Vesey – Deb Munson Art Show to be held annually during the Washington State Spring Fair.

Beginning in April 2018 the Vesey – Munson Art Show will be held during the Washington State Spring Fair to accomplish two primary objectives:

  • Increase student participation in the art show
  • Increase public exposure to student achievement in the arts

The Vesey-Munson Art Show was begun in 1998 as a way to celebrate student achievement in the visual arts and has been heldARTIST WITH PHOTO in May at the Karshner Museum and Center for Culture & Arts. Presented in honor of former Puyallup art teachers Dan Vesey and Deb Munson, the art show has given student artists an audience for their creative expression. The show demonstrates student acquisition of art concepts and techniques, their achievement in art classes, and the creativity with which they communicate through works of art.

Vesey and Munson taught in the Puyallup School District for many years inspiring students and other teachers. They were well loved, served as mentors, and held the highest standards for creativity and originality. Each shared their gifts by visiting classes throughout the district, organizing events, and furthering the arts in the community. Their mission continues in the district and community – the arts are for ALL students

The arts are an important part of Puyallup School District’s academic offerings. Since arts education provides students with essential skills and knowledge they need to be productive, college and career ready citizens, the district supports a strong arts program for all students.

girl with paintingWith nearly 23,000 students, the Puyallup School District is the eighth largest school district in Washington State. Since 1998, the district’s enrollment has increased by 1,300 students, yet the size of the Vesey-Munson Art Show has remained somewhat static. The district would like to provide greater access to the show which will better represent the diversity and creativity of its student population.

Moving the art show to a larger venue will allow more student artists to show their work. Therefore, in 2018, the show will take place at the Washington State Spring Fair in the largest of the Hobby Hall rooms allowing more participation and greater exposure.

Washington state law identifies the arts as a core content area and an essential part of the basic education goals of all school districts. In Puyallup secondary students have the chance to enroll in several visual arts courses. Junior high art classes teach the principles of design using various media such as drawing, painting, and printmaking. Advanced art classes introduce additional media such as clay, silkscreen, scratch board, and water based paints. Ceramics classes introduce students to slab, coil, and drape construction. Some schools include wheel thrown ceramics courses.

In high school, courses become more narrowly focused and include Drawing, Interior Design, Painting, and Sculpture. Under theartist with boots heading of Arts and Communication, students can participate in Photography, Graphic Design, Video Productions, and Web Design.

In April 2018 the Vesey – Munson Art Show will be held during the Washington State Spring Fair allowing many young artists the chance to express themselves to a large audience.

Changes in the way things have always been done can cause frustration or hurt feelings. For others, it can be energizing and exciting. The changes being made to the timing and location of the Vesey – Munson Art Show are intended to better represent the changing demographic of the Puyallup community. In addition, changes are intended to help visitors better understand the school district efforts to facilitate excellent instruction, student growth, and achievement in the arts.                                                                                

The annual Vesey – Munson Art Show is one example of the tradition of excellence celebrated in the Puyallup School District. The art show honors excellent teachers such as Vesey and Munson, and celebrates the achievement of hundreds of student artists in Puyallup schools.