Wilmington students create glittering tile mural for elementary school lobby

A yearlong arts project at Stubbs Elementary School on Wilmington’s East Side is creating a lasting and glittering ceramic tile mosaic for the school lobby.

The project, done in collaboration with the Creative Vision Factory, is truly ambitious — 3,500 unique designs mixed with pieces of mirror and broken contractor tiles. Arrayed in a snakeskin design, the mural will run the length of the hallway, a 9-by-60 foot stretch.

The youngsters are encouraged to create designs that express their experiences and favorite topics.

There’s animals. Sea creatures. The children’s homes. Their friends. A Lego Batman. Circles, stars and other geometric shapes. Stick figures. Air Jordans and other sneakers.

The mural will be completed by the end of the school year and installed over the summer.

The project is not the first partnership between Christina School District and the Wilmington studio. Two years ago artists and students at the Sarah Pyle Academy, an alternative high school, teamed up to paint a mural on the exterior brick wall.

This winter, after beloved guidance counselor Montier Hall died, they created a memorial tile mural in Pyle’s lobby.

At both Pyle and Stubbs, the projects have been transcendent experiences, far greater than the sum of their parts., said Tiernan Alexander of the Creative Vision Factory. 

“It’s a really good metaphor for the idea of individual pieces coming together to make a greater whole. You know, kid designs are beautiful,” Alexander said. “It’s a way of immortalizing that kind of kid drawing but also makes it into a larger beautiful piece.”

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