Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Day 110 - Francis Wyman's New Alphabet Wall - Christina Chang, BHS Art Department

The Francis Wyman Elementary School received a generous donation of artwork from the Hair Cuttery. Dennis Ratner is the founder and CEO of Ratner Companies, including Hair Cuttery salons, a national family of hair salons. Dennis is also the cousin of artist Phillip RatnerThe Hair Cuttery supports the arts and believes that art encourages imagination and stimulates the brain of a child. 

The artwork "Through the Alphabet: from A to Z" is a collection of drawings created by artist Philip Ratner. Each drawing is skillfully drawn and illustrates a letter and an animal. 

The artist is noted for his five sculptures at the statue of liberty and 40 sculptures at Ellis Island. Other permanent collections include works at The Smithsonian, The Library of Congress and The United States Supreme Court.

The Ratner Museum is dedicate to exhibiting his work. It is most unusual for an artist to have a museum permanently dedicated to his work during his lifetime and then sharing that museum with countless numbers of other artists. In 1984, Mr. Ratner was inspired to open the first of two museums, one in Israel and one in the Washington, DC area with his cousin Dennis Ratner.

With degrees from the Pratt Institute and American University, Ratner taught in the Washington, DC area for 23 years, and at the same time built his reputation as an international artist. No longer teaching, his students from as long ago as the early sixties still track him down and speak of the influence he had on their lives.

We are fortunate to have some of Philip Ratner's artwork.

I wanted to make sure that the artwork was properly displayed at Francis Wyman. The wall to display the artwork got a fresh new color selected by Interior Designer Deborah Chang. BHS Art Student Shelia Joyce helped me paint the wall and Architect Jansen Chang also generously donated his time and helped hang the artwork. The Francis Wyman custodial staff was extremely helpful as well. 

The Francis Wyman PTO funded the supplies to display and hang the artwork. 


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