Students’ Art Project
“Vision of Optimism” To Be Celebrated at Willimantic Juvenile
Court This Friday
The Connecticut Judicial Branch and
Eastern Connecticut State University on
Friday, Feb. 2, 2007,
will celebrate “Vision of Optimism,”
a project that drew on the
many talents of students in eastern Connecticut to create art
for the children and youths who go to the Juvenile Court in
The event will start at 2 p.m. in
Superior Court for Juvenile Matters, 81 Columbia Ave.,
Willimantic, where artwork by students from Eastern and public
schools in Windham is on display in the lobby and courtrooms.
The program will include a
welcome from Windham Judicial District Administrative Judge
Antonio C. Robaina. Other speakers include Eastern President
Elsa Nuñez and Dr. Anne Dawson, professor of art at Eastern.
Closing remarks will be made by Superior Court Judge Francis J.
Foley III, who came up with the idea for the art project.
“At Juvenile Court, we have kids
who are scared, perhaps neglected and abused, and who are
desperately in need of encouragement and a belief in a better
future,” Judge Foley said. “The artwork is intended to send a
message of hope, strength and courage.”
Students from Eastern’s Design
Group developed banners for the courthouse lobby and named the
project “Vision of Optimism.” The Design Group is a project for
seniors in Eastern’s Digital Art & Design program, in which
students connect to and contribute to the local community
through their creative skills.
“When I presented this project to
the Design Group, I was thrilled by my students’ immediate
enthusiasm for Judge Foley’s innovative idea of using visual
imagery to transform the juvenile courthouse lobby into an
environment of hope and optimism,” June Bisantz, professor of
visual arts at Eastern, said.
She added: “The students’
compassion for their young audience was evident from the very
beginning. They worked singly and collaboratively to identify
themes and images that would reach the young people passing
through the juvenile court system. This was a project in which
art, design and emotional connection all came together to
produce lasting visual statements of comfort and inspiration.”
In addition, students from
Windham Center Elementary School, North Windham Elementary
School, Natchaug Elementary School and Windham Middle School did
30 pieces of artwork.
“It is always amazing to observe
the creative spirit and abilities of our young people when they
are presented with an important task,” Windham Superintendent of
Schools Paul K. Perzanoski said. “What greater message of hope
to children than a message of encouragement from their own
peers! Windham Public Schools’ students and staff should be
commended for their participation, their talent and their
For further information, please
contact Rhonda Stearley-Hebert, manager of communications,
Connecticut Judicial Branch, at 860-757-2270.
Click here for pictures
from this event