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Young Visionaries Produce Art & Then Some at Summer Connections 2015

By Alexa Colas '13, Summer Connections Communications Intern

This summer’s first-ever Young Visionaries program, which took place July 13-24 during Weeks 3 and 4 of Summer Connections 2015, offered unparalleled experiences through a two-week intensive program that pushed educational boundaries. Featuring a mix of off-campus trips and artist visits, the program successfully coordinated dynamic lessons inside and outside the classroom to enhance the Young Visionaries curriculum.

Projects big and small, in combination with discussion and artist profiles, were incorporated into each teacher's curriculum. Featured as a visiting artist was former D-E Visual Arts department chair and teacher Gregg Emery, who taught one class as part of the Young Visionaries Experience. As an established artist with a signature and recognizable style, he taught his students how to recreate his works with their own personal twists. Discover more about the artist at

As the first week went on, students took a trip to experience the exhibit Storylines: Contemporary Art at the Guggenheim. Struck with wonder and creative passion, students had the opportunity to draw and re-create the sculptures, paintings, and displays they saw throughout the museum. The trip to the Guggenheim was an educational expedition that distinctly complimented the program’s curriculum of contemporary and historical art that is meant to tell a story, no matter who it belongs to.

Two other visiting artists who enlightened the Young Visionaries artists were Mary Mattingly and Sally Bozzuto, both of whom are highly established artists in the world of sustainable and eco-friendly visual arts. Their time at Summer Connections was one of complete innovation as they guided students in designing, building, and gardening two planter boxes, one of which will be staying on campus while the other will be joining the artists on the Swale project.

To conclude the two weeks where students cultivated their knowledge of various art forms, these Young Visionaries put their abilities on display at the school’s Swartley Gallery. Families, friends, and teachers attended a reception on the final day of the program, where they embraced students’ works - whether was drawing, painting, sculpture, mixed-media collage, woodworking, printmaking and more. Toward the conclusion of the event, students performed various routines that they had studied during their Creative Movement sessions of the program. In combination with words recited by students, the performance stood out as something unique, complex, but also fun. As families and students - with their works in hand - headed out to enjoy the rest of their summers, they got a chance to see the planters that the students had built as part of the Swale Project.

Young Visionaries’ first summer was an absolute accomplishment! Director and D-E Visual Arts faculty member Rachel Brusky and her team of educators have smoothly executed their goal of producing a program that allows students to engage in all things art through class discussion, off-campus trips, and experimenting on their own.  

Read more about this year’s Young Visionaries experience on Summer Connections’ Summer Notes blog or visit for more information.
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Located in Englewood, New Jersey, Dwight-Englewood is a greater New York City area private school with a rigorous college prep curriculum for boys and girls in preschool through grade 12.