Dominique Cote of Quebec's Atelier Phebus guides Laronde Elementary Grade 2 students in helping complete the school's mosaic project.

Putting the pieces together at Laronde Elementary

South Surrey French-immersion students guided by Quebec mosaic artists in creating decorative project

Everyone at school, from students to teachers, had a hand in Laronde Elementary’s latest project – two mosaic artworks created over a one-week period, May 5-9.

With the guidance of mosaic artists Dominique Cote and husband Mathieu Bergeron – partners in Quebec-based Atelier Phebus – all grades at the South Surrey French immersion school got involved in gluing brightly coloured tile fragments to form the two works, which will be installed in the entrance hallway of the school.

On the day the Peace Arch News visited the work in progress, principal Johane Fortin and teacher Robin Deschene were rubbing shoulders with Grade 2 students eagerly piecing together colours in the appropriate panel areas, under the watchful eye of Cote.

The first piece, a three-foot by three-foot panel, is the new Les Lynx de Laronde logo, designed by Grade 6 student Patrick Hipsz. The second, a six-foot by six-foot work created in four interlocking sections, depicts the school’s core value statement – Vivre en francais.

As Cote pointed out, the design, which incorporates French words and phrases as text, cheekily places Laronde in the middle of a map of Surrey and the rest of B.C.

“Like the centre of the universe,” she joked with Fortin.

“Mathieu did the composition, inspired by a collective collage done by all the students,” she said, adding that they created the wood backing and made the coloured tiles in their studio before travelling to B.C.

This is their first such project in the Vancouver area, following their subscription to Art Starts – a B.C. project that helps schools invite artists to work with schools in a variety of different disciplines – but following the Laronde project they will do similar work at Woodward Hill Elementary and several other locations in B.C.

“For students to work together on a project like this is important – it’s very powerful,” Cote said.

“They also learn that the first mosaics were done in Europe, in Greece and in Italy, and that it was anonymous work – but it’s a lot different now.”

She and Bergeron are taking turns teaching and looking after their two children, Jeanne, 7, and Raphael, 6, who have accompanied them on the trip west as a learning experience.

“It’s nice for the children, as well,” Cote said. “They are seeing something different.”

Cote and Fortin agreed that the enthusiasm of students for the mosaic project has confirmed the effectiveness of it as a teaching tool.

“I invited Mathieu and Dominique to Laronde, because one of our teachers found out about them during an exchange trip to Quebec,” said Fortin.

“It’s a nice place,” Cote said. “We see the children have good manners, they are very interested and very participatory. We’re both artists who like to share our ideas, and this is a nice way to teach, to meet people and get into a school environment.

“We would love to come out to B.C. for a longer time next time, for a few months, perhaps.”

 

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

One dead following pedestrian collision in South Surrey’s Campbell Heights

Incident occurred just after 7 a.m. on 24 Avenue near 188 Street

Borrow $8 billion for Fraser Valley rail link, Abbotsford mayor urges province

Henry Braun urges province to borrow billions to connect Abbotsford & Chilliwack to Metro Vancouver

Elderly pedestrian killed in Vancouver crash with Surrey delivery van

Elderly woman was in marked crosswalk with husband when she was hit

Anti-pipeline protests in support of Wet’suwet’en continue at B.C. government buildings

‘We are unarmed, they have guns,’ protesters chanted on Wednesday morning

Harry and Meghan should cover their own security costs: NDP heritage critic

The prince, Meghan Markle and their eight-month-old son Archie are reportedly staying at a mansion near Victoria

Theo the 800-pound pig trimmed down and still looking for love on Vancouver Island

“He’s doing really well, lost quite a few pounds and can run now.”

Pooches Jasper and Jake bring comfort to Abbotsford Police Department

Comfort dogs there for cuddles and play time when needed

Horgan unveils B.C. cabinet shuffle changes

Premier John Horgan has made three major changes to his cabinet

Dog reunited with Tofino owner, months after being taken from beach

Shannon Boothman ‘ecstatic’ at pet’s return after a tip leads to social media search

B.C.’s first ride-hailing app to launch in Tofino, Whistler in February

The Whistle! app will be available in Tofino on Feb.1 and in Whistler Feb. 6.

Councillor resigns in Revelstoke after colleagues approved 67% raise

Council approved a 134 per cent raise for the mayor of Revelstoke

Most Read

l -->