Thirty-five Spring Creek students had an inspiring field trip last week. To continue celebrating Black History Month, Spring Creek Art teacher, Mike Mericle took them to the Des Moines Art Center. This is Mr. Mericle’s first year at Southeast Polk, coming here from teaching at Fort Dodge. These students are actively engaged in his art class. 

“My goal is that they see the influence African American artists have had in art. This isn’t just something we celebrate during Black History month but all the time and we can see it everywhere,” shared Mr. Mericle.

The group was split into 3 smaller groups and taken on hosted tours around the Art Center, which is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year.  The students were very engaged, asking questions and sharing their thoughts on the different pieces. 

Then they went to the studio area to learn about Jean-Miichel Basquiat, an African American artist who rose to success during the 1980s as part of the contemporary, Neo-expressionism movement. He was known for several of his self-portraits, so the students were provided with supplies and instructed to paint their own self-portraits. These self-portraits will be on display during the Spring Creek Black History Month Showcase on Friday, February 24th. The students have been working hard all month to learn about influential African Americans and they are excited to showcase their work. Look for more to come about this upcoming event!