PHOTO CAPTION: AHS students David Lapointe (left) and Juliana Harrer work on sketching the mural design onto the wall in the second floor hallway. The designs that these students are sketching were all created by Andover high school students, and combined into one big mural piece by professional mural artist David Fichter. Art teacher Ms. Daviso said they “wanted something that would better represent the students of Andover High School today.”

By Sidney Conway

Recently, Andover High School students (supervised by art department faculty) have begun to paint a new mural in the second floor hallway.

This mural is being painted to replace the old mural that existed in the same place for nearly fifteen years. The goal is to provide a more updated view of the Andover community.

The creation of the new mural has been an ongoing discussion within the art community of Andover High. Art teacher Ms. Daviso said she and students in the National Art Honors Society have, for the last few years, been “looking at the art that’s throughout the school building, and looking for ways to enhance what’s already there.”

Creation of the new mural involves help from many people, but Daviso said that the “mural itself is student led; students have created all the images that have gone into the design.” However, they do have some help from a professional mural artist, David Fichter, who is “guiding the students through the process.” Daviso said Fichter is helping by taking all the images created by the students to “put it together for a single design for the space.”

Initially, there was no plan to create an entirely new mural. According to Daviso the plan was just to “go in and refresh the old mural.” However after discussion, it was decided that a new mural would do more to better represent the students at Andover High.

Daviso stated, “We felt like we wanted something that really represented Andover High School, and that talked more about Andover’s broader connections, not just within the high school but in the larger community and in the global world.”

Many interesting aspects were incorporated to achieve this goal of better representing students at the school. You may have noticed an occuring theme on the new mural is birds.

Wanting to incorporate the mascot of the high school, the eagle, Daviso stated that they “wanted to go about it in a more naturalistic way.” She added: “We went into the school cafeteria [where] there’s a map that shows all of the places throughout the world that students in our school come from.” The artists working on the mural incorporated the national bird from each place indicated on that map. These birds are “representative of the diversity in andover high school,” Daviso said.

Students involved in creating the mural are really enjoying the process. Junior  Ethan Paulo, a new student at Andover High, said, “The best thing about working on the mural is just getting to know everyone better and getting to become familiar with students at Andover.”

Students working on the mural usually work on it “on Saturdays for about four to five hours,” according to Paulo.