On Monday 6-24-19, Jason Naylor will be at The Dover Elementary School to install a unique mural designed in collaboration with two 6th graders from the school. Visitors are welcome to come to the school grounds throughout the day to watch Naylor paint/work and meet the students behind the project. Find Jason Naylor on IG at @jasonnaylor. Jason is donating his time to this project, but money is needed to pay for supplies. Consider a donation at au.gofundme.com/doverschoolwall.
Reprint of an article from DVNews: By Lauren Harkawik
Student request for artist to decorate wall approved by school board
DOVER – At the Dover School Board’s meeting on Monday, the board granted permission for a wall of the school to be decorated in a mural by graffiti artist Jason Naylor.
The request came from sixth-graders Breck Bensin and Kelsey Thayer. Breck was present at Monday’s meeting to speak to the school board about the project. They originally discovered Naylor’s art through a project they completed for the school’s International Baccalaureate program.
“We are now proposing the idea of having Jason Naylor come to our school,” said Breck. “We want him to paint a mural on the wall facing the playground.”
Naylor’s website says his work “consists of bright colors and rich blacks, and regularly contains messages of love and positivity, as he believes that kindness is the key to success,” and “Jason’s mission is to spread color and positivity across the globe.”
The school’s art teacher, Jennifer Tallini, told the board that if they OK’d the idea, she planned to coordinate a GoFundMe campaign to finance the project.
“(Naylor is only) asking for the cost of paint and a small stipend to stay overnight,” said Tallini.
Chair Rich Werner asked Breck and Tallini about whether principal Matt Martyn, who was not in attendance, supported the project. Both said yes.
“He’s said, ‘Tell me what you need from me to help you do this,’” said Tallini. “He helped us decide which wall would be appropriate. My take on his take is that he really wants this as a community message of love and tolerance and that’s what (Naylor’s) designs are about.”
Tallini said Breck and Kelsey would ultimately decide what message should go on the wall. Breck said she and Kelsey had surveyed their classmates, and that there had been a consensus among them that the message should align with the school’s motto.
“Most of them suggested ‘Work hard, be kind,’” she said. “And if it wasn’t that it was ‘Work hard, be kind, and be inspired.’ They were all pretty much the message of our school motto.”
Tallini and Breck said they were proposing that the art be put on a wall of the school facing the school’s playground. Werner said he thought the proposed statement was appropriate and that he supported the installation as long as Martyn and superintendent Bill Anton gave the final OK to the plans.
“We have to make sure it’s something not divisive rather than bringing people together,” he said.
Regarding funding, Werner suggested that the group consider putting together a presentation for the town’s economic development director. “It may be something that’s a draw to the town,” he said. “People who have heard about this gentleman’s work and can’t go somewhere farther away to see it. It may draw people to us, so that may be a good place to ask for some money.”
Board member Jolene Mahon commended Breck for the work she and Kelsey had done on the project, and for Breck’s bravery in talking to the board about it. Vice-chair Laura Sibilia echoed Mahon’s comments and said she hoped the girls will continue to be involved in the community.
“You’re doing a great job organizing your thoughts and following through,” she said. “Hopefully you will carry that forward and continue to do that as you move along with ideas for your community.”
“Now go forth and graffiti the wall,” said Werner.
By Wednesday, the GoFundMe campaign for $2,000 was up. Those who are interested can see it at au.gofundme.com/doverschoolwall.
Contact Jennifer Tallini, Art Teacher at The Dover School, anytime with about this project at: firstname.lastname@example.org