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Join us in the Discovery Center to learn more about Lions United Through Art. Multimedia on foam board, marbled paper using shaving cream and liquid watercolor, cyanotype prints
Arts4All Florida and the Leon High School class of Scott Evans present this collective work of art that expresses the unique abilities of “Lions United” students. After experiencing the elevated boardwalks and habitats of the Tallahassee Museum’s Wildlife Florida exhibits in October, students created intricate puzzle pieces that reflect the amazing yet sometimes mystifying strengths and characteristics of neurodiversity. Although puzzle pieces have been associated with autism, these students see them as interlocking symbols of their talents that, when anchored together, produce a colorful mosaic of society.
Lions United Through Art was completed in the classroom with classmates, mentors, and Arts4All Florida teaching artist, Megan Holmes Cameron. Each student artist explored various process-oriented painting techniques creating marbled paper and the foundation for each puzzle piece in the installation. The student artists also experimented with found objects and native plants to create cyanotypes. Each piece also contains a self-portrait, highlighting the friendships, community, and personality of the artist.
Lions United Through Art demonstrates diversity, inclusion, and social participation – watchwords of the “Lions United” class. Scott Evans invites students from the general school population to work alongside and mentor students in the special education program. He encourages bonds between differently-abled youth that make significant long-lasting impacts.
“My students deserve to interact in society just as others do,” teacher Evans contends. “Their mentors treat them as equals and that makes a strong foundation not only for friendship but for career success.”
Arts4All Florida teaching artist, Megan, states, “It is clear that the emphasis of Lions United focuses on the whole person and the various roles we all navigate. I saw shared identities of artists, friends, community members, student—people defined by character, not a label. Words and actions have many ripple effects and through support and encouragement, we all can feel inspired by being seen and heard, believed in and given the opportunity to explore and develop as artists and people.”
The exhibition is a collaborative effort of Arts4All Florida, Leon High School, and the Tallahassee Museum. Arts4All Florida, the state agency on arts and disability, provides, supports, and champions arts education and cultural experiences for and by people with disabilities with a vision to create a world in which the arts are universally accessible.