IB Art students work on first projects


Courtesy of Alex Mekuria

Junior Alex Mekuria will focus each of his projects around different aspects of Halloween.

IB Art students are working to complete their first work of the year. The typical IB student will complete between 12 and 18 pieces of art per year, including a research assignment surrounding their topic.

Students have chosen a theme that that will be the focal point of their research and their artwork for the remainder of the year.

“We have students working on a range of different themes, anywhere from some projects that are extremely personal to some that are very worldly,” IB Art teacher Meredith Stevens said. “Students get to explore themselves. They get to explore what they’re interested in and how their artwork affects them.”

Teachers check up on students’ progress every week to two weeks, but students self-govern the majority of their time, allowing them to work at their own pace to create the required number of projects.

“[My favorite part is] the amount of freedom,” junior  Alex Mekuria said. “You’re not limited by what the teacher is telling you to do so you get to chose your own projects and choose how you go about them.”

The program motivates students to work through problems on their own and only rely on teacher help when necessary.

“It’s completely your own choice [if] you get direction from a teacher on what to do or how to go from what you’re doing,” junior Gillian Thomas said.

While the program allows for freedom, it also requires a self-driven and motivated students to stay on task.

“[The hardest part is] trying to make the required number of projects by the end of the year, Mekuria said.

Others struggle with finding and sticking with a theme. All projects must be focused around the same theme. Students who change their theme must still create 12 to 18 projects around their new topic.

“The biggest challenge is having that focus and choosing that theme and understanding what it is that they’re doing,” Stevens said.

Students chose between two options: A or B. Option A focuses more on studio art while option B has more emphasis on research. Both options are designed to encourage students to explore their art and their interests.

“The main focus of IB Art is for students to explore what art is to them, how it has affected them, how their art has affected the world and where their place is in the art world,” Stevens said.