Local Artist to Design Sculpture with Talawanda Art Students

Talawanda art students with Mr. McWilliams outside the Fitton Center in Hamilton where Fischer’s art is on display. (Photo by Grace Huddleston)

This week a group of select art students from Talawanda will have the privilege to work with local artist Alysia Fischer to design and construct a new site-specific sculpture for the rotunda here at THS.

A project Art teacher Jim McWilliams says he wishes to do every two years.  “I want art to be a part of our school and I think students should be involved”

So what can we expect?

“We aren’t quite sure what we are going to do,” said McWilliams. “It could be really good or really bad,” he joked.  “We are going to try and incorporate repurposed and reused materials, though.  It’s a huge theme in art right now, turning cool old stuff into pieces of art.”

Alysia Fischer uses reused material in her art.  “It started with inner tubes behind BikeWise, and when I wanted to make larger pieces I found the Firestone in Brookville (IN),” she said.  “If it’s just going to go into the landfill, that seems like an ideal material to use.”

“It’s exciting,” said McWilliams.  “Our students get to be a part of this and they get to create this awesome, original piece of art.”

Fischer said she is excited, too.  “I am looking forward to the experience,” she said.  “The new school facility is great, and the sculpture site has a lot of potential.”

Originally from Louisville, Kentucky, Fischer said she has always been interested in art.  “In high school I sold my earrings at a local gallery, but I didn’t have plans to major in art in college, I actually started out pre-med.”

After taking a glass blowing class she eventually decided on changing her major to Art.  Fischer has her Master’s degree in Near Eastern Studies, a Ph.D. in Anthropology and her Master of Fine Arts in Studio Art.

Fischer is now in the Oxford area and teaches courses on cultural diversity for the Center for American and World Cultures at Miami, although she also occasionally does Independent Studies with students in Art.

In the upcoming week Fischer, along with the students, is going to design and construct the sculpture for the rotunda in workshops held during the school day.  The sculpture is scheduled to be officially unveiled at “The Night of Art” on the 28th of this month.