DODDS students with a flair for art showcase their work

Parents and students admire the talent reflected in the artwork at an exhibit at Kaiserslautern City Hall on Thursday, April 3, 2014. The exhibit, which will run until May 2, spotlights works by Department of Defense Dependents Schools students in the Kaiserslautern area.


By JENNIFER H. SVAN | STARS AND STRIPES Published: April 4, 2014

KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany – Madeleine Hales likes to draw people, Paris, pools and “sometimes people drawing art.”

She sketches so often that her mother, Tami Hales, wasn’t surprised that one of the Sembach Elementary School first-grader’s drawings was selected for the Kaiserslautern area schools’ art exhibit at Kaiserslautern’s City Hall.

“We call her our absent-minded artist,” Hales said while attending the exhibit’s opening night Thursday with her family. “She has a bunch of projects going all the time.”

Madeleine’s “Flamenco Dancer,” drawn in colored pencil, is one of dozens of works of art on display at the “Art Shapes the World” exhibit includes pieces from 10 different DODDS-Europe schools in the Kaiserslautern district. The exhibit runs until May 2.

Parents and students mingled Thursday while admiring a variety of art forms, from ceramic birdhouses and bright-hued weavings to computer-graphic designs and watercolor paintings.

The Overseas Art Education Association, an overseas branch of the National Art Education Association that represents Department of Defense Dependents Schools in Europe and the Pacific, has been organizing the annual exhibit for the past 25 years, said Terese Sarno, the overseas association’s president and a third-grade teacher at Ramstein Intermediate School.

“We want to showcase our children’s artistic abilities,” she said. “It gives them a wonderful feeling to see their work on display and have people admire their work.”

Many of the exhibits over the years have been held at the City Hall, Sarno said, a centrally located venue that gives the German community a chance to “share in our work.”

DODDS art teachers selected the work of about 100 students to present, Sarno said.

Haley Chappell, a sixth-grader at Landstuhl Elementary-Middle School, said she felt proud to have her micrography design chosen for the show. The project involved making an image of themselves out of black-ink words “that describe what we like to do,” Haley said.

A glance at Haley’s piece reveals a kid who likes to shop, buy shoes and dance, and who is also fond of stars, dots and popcorn.

Haley said she enjoys art because of “all the interesting things that we do.”

The exhibit at City Hall is free of charge; the venue is closed on German holidays and weekends.


Madeleine Hales, 7, poses for a portrait in front of her ?Flamenco Dancer? colored-pencil drawing at the"Art Shapes the World" exhibit at Kaiserslautern City Hall on Thursday, April 3, 2014.


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