LOS GATOS, Calif., Feb. 15, 2019 /Patch/ — Miguel Machuca is standing in front of a roomful of art students at Fisher Middle School in Los Gatos, and he asks them: “You guys know what sculpture is, right? Well, this is the same, everything starts out black, and my job is to find out where the light belongs.” Machuca is a Mexican-American artist living in San Jose. His signature media is charcoal. He creates his work by using electric erasers to draw on black charcoal surfaces, which are layered on top of white paint. Dozens of Machuca’s charcoal drawings, as well as a colorful piece of abstract art, surrounded him last Monday in art teacher Cesar Anzaldo’s classroom. They ranged in size from an eight by four foot panel to much smaller pieces that Machuca created while lying in a hospital bed in 2015 with Stage Four non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a form of cancer. Read more
LOS GATOS, Calif., Jan. 15, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — These multi-colored spirals lined up on a giant sheet of white paper might look as mysterious as Egyptian hieroglyphics to the uninitiated, but they’re actually representations of how a class of sixth graders spend their time at Los Gatos’ Raymond J. Fisher Middle School.
The spirals form a “data portrait” — an art form inspired by Laurie Frick, an artist in Austin, Texas who “explores the bumpy future of data captured about us.” Each spiral pictured here represents the hours spent in a typical sixth grader’s day: The colored dots represent a child’s favorite category of activity, with the other categories (sleep, meals, school, homework, screen-time, etc.), spiraling outwards to the least favored.
The kids created these data portraits during a workshop and lesson about the concept of “big data art.” It’s a new 90-minute class taught during a math period by the Art Docents of Los Gatos, and is part of a push by the Los Gatos Education Foundation and the school district to incorporate more of a STEAM approach to learning.
The idea behind the innovative and unusual new lesson is to engage students in a simple, accessible way in order to introduce them to the more complex idea of “big data”.
The parent volunteer-run workshop does this by engaging the kids in a relatively simple and fun hands-on charting and art activity. The insights revealed about their days tend to surprise and excite the sixth graders as the spirals show them an aspect of their lives they hadn’t explicitly thought about before.
The Art Docents’ Big Data Art Workshop showcases the work of several notable big data artists to illustrate how modern computing and art can quantify and reveal what’s otherwise invisible around us.
The non-profit, founded in 1973, is a volunteer-run arts and cultural educational organization. It serves more than 3,000 students in the Los Gatos Union School District.
Big Data and data science is increasingly shaping every aspect of modern 21st century life. A few districts around the country are piloting data science courses for middle and high-schoolers. The Art Docents of Los Gatos’ Big Data Art Workshop places Fisher among those pioneers introducing the concept to middle schoolers who will become part of our future workforce.
Los Gatos Weekly Vol.134, No 34, Friday, August 18, 2017 (page 3)
Los Gatos Weekly Vol. 134, No 11 Friday, March 10, 2017 (pages 22-23)
Los Gatos Magazine May/June 2016 (pages 10-12)
Los Gatos: Art show features everything from candy cane trees to scientific drawings (San Jose Mercury News) May 6, 2015, The Fisher Middle School multipurpose room was turned into a mini museum this week as 3,000 works of art went on display at the 41st annual Student Art Show. The show is presented by the Art Docents of Los Gatos, who provide Los Gatos Union School District students with art instruction throughout the school year. The classes are primarily for children in grades K-5, but students in grades 7-8 receive instruction if a teacher requests it. Read more…
San Jose Mercury News, August 12, 2015, Longtime Los Gatos resident Grace Sautter’s son called her “Amazing Grace,” a selfless doer who passed away peacefully at her Los Gatos home earlier this month. She was born in 1921 in the family home on 13th Street in San Jose and moved to town in 1964… Locally, Grace was well known for her volunteer work at the Village House, a now-closed restaurant that was run by volunteers who donated their profits to Eastfield Ming Quong. Grace loved her groups, too, including the Art Docents of Los Gatos, which she joined in 1971.
San Jose Mercury News, May 8, 2014, A numbered serigraph called “Cafe Rive Gauche” by famed artist LeRoy Neiman is the centerpiece of an upcoming show and sale by the Art Docents of Los Gatos. The docents are selling the serigraph during their free-to-the-public show that runs May 16-18 at the Los Gatos Art Museum, 4 Tait Ave.
Los Gatos Patch Los Gatos School District Art Show is Open, May 5, 2014 Celebrating forty years of bringing art education to the children of Los Gatos, the Art Docents will present more than 2,000 pieces of delightful artwork at Fisher Middle School through May 8. Student masterpieces from all four elementary schools, Lexington, Louise Van Meter, Daves Avenue and Blossom Hill as well as RJ Fisher Middle School will be on display.
Los Gatos Patch, February 13, 2014, Junior Art Docents. Original artwork created by Los Gatos High School Junior Art Docents will be sold as part of the New Millennium Foundation Benefit Auction Dinner and Dance on March 8, 2014 at La Rinconada Country Club. The original acrylic painting on canvas is entitled “The Cats” in honor of the high school mascot, the Wild Cats.
May 7, 2013, Mercury News, 38th annual Student Art Show returns to Fisher. The 38th annual Student Art Show, featuring works by Los Gatos Union School District students, is coming up May 14-18 at Fisher Middle School, with more than 2,000 works of art on display in the school’s multi-purpose room. The show is sponsored by the Art Docents of Los Gatos and features drawings, paintings, collages and sculptures. Read more.
Los Gatos Patch, May 14, 2012, Art Docents present Elements and Principles. This show and sale is a fundraiser with at least 25% of the proceeds going to the Art Docents of Los Gatos. The event is free and open to the public. Original art from local artists will be available for viewing and purchase, including paintings, greeting cards, jewelry and other handmade items. The Art Docents of Los Gatos has been leading arts education in the Los Gatos Union School District for 39 years. They are made up of parents, educators and artists. Come and support art education in Los Gatos.
Los Gatos Patch, May 11, 2012. Art Docents of Los Gatos Present Annual Show. Nonprofit volunteer organization hosts 38th annual Student Art Show at R.J. Fisher Middle School May 14-17. The Art Docents of Los Gatos present their annual art show featuring more than 2,000 pieces of student creations on display at ‘s cafeteria May 14-17. Read more.
The Los Gatos Patch, February 17, 2012, Learning with the Art Docents of Los Gatos. It has always fascinated me how two people can look at the same thing and interpret it differently and experience completely different emotions. So, I was looking forward to joining the Art Docents of Los Gatos in the classroom as they explored art history. I was not disappointed. The students were actively engaged and visibly excited to learn.It has always fascinated me how two people can look at the same thing and interpret it differently and experience completely different emotions. So, I was looking forward to joining the Art Docents of Los Gatos in the classroom as they explored art history. I was not disappointed… Read more.