Art is often viewed as a window or door to the soul. Now, a local elementary school is home to what educators hope is the beginning of something greater than them.
Under some cloud cover, the students, and staff of Travis Elementary – joined by dignitaries from the French Consulate, former consul of Mexico and the Pan-American Roundtable – gathered May 11 for a ceremony to dedicate the recently-installed Art Door sculptures in the school’s garden.
Sponsored by the Texan French Alliance for the Arts (TFAA), it was Travis parent Yvonamor Palix, a TFAA board member, who brought the idea of opening these doors to the Travis community and who coordinated the installation.
“What wonderful additions [the doors] are to an already magnificent setting,” Travis Elementary Principal Tom Day said.
Just a few of more than 80 found throughout the city, and commissioned in 2012 as part of the community “Open the Door” project, the Art Doors symbolize expression of “an open heart and mind in a community.” One side of each door has been painted by a local artist, the other by a foreign artist.
“It’s about a seed that we plant in the minds of our children,” Palix said.
Students were invited to write a poem or a text inspired by the doors and to present it that day. And those spoken words reinforced Palix’s thought that art, inspiration, and creativity must be encouraged and nourished.
Further, both Day and Palix felt a sense of destiny when the job was complete.
“[These doors] symbolize the opening of an entire realm,” Palix said. “A revolving door is just such a beautiful symbol – we hope they can be inspirational.”
Day echoed the sentiment.
“As soon as I saw them go up, I knew they were meant to be here. They’re just the perfect complement to this campus and community that values art so highly,” he added.