Tuesday, September 12, 2023

dandelions in Hershey

Next week, is the installation of the biggest mosaic of my career so far.  I can't even tell you how surreal this is.  The project started 2 1/2 years ago and had gotten cancelled twice.  Both times the project came back into being, it was a greater plan than it was prior to cancellation. I would be writing for days if I told you all the disappointments, close calls, and crappy events that turned out to be the exact path this project needed to take to become what it was always meant to be. 

There is no way to tell you the hundreds of stories about tile ideas that this mosaic contains. That is half of the reason these projects are such a joy to "work" on. This dandelion project is a literal dream, starting with the amazing people I got to work with.  I have wanted to do a project with multiple schools and this project called for exactly that.  This past winter, four schools, Milton Hershey, Hershey, Lower Dauphin, and Vista School all made tiles for this project. Students won't see all the tiles from students at other schools until October when there is a reveal event.

Each school had different amounts of time they were able to devote to tile making.  Some of the really amazing tiles were made in one class period! I ended up working with about 500 students that made about 1000 tiles!  They were all white, blue and green to make dandelion poofs.

The front has three poofs in the dandelion plant that is amongst other flowers.  Each poof is almost three feet across.  This photo is the mosaic laid out so I could measure.  It is still covered with tape and ungrouted.  The wall that it will be installed on is 20 feet long and five feet tall.

The back of the wall is the two poofs and a little ladybug with a whole lotta beautiful blue glass.  I am just trying to not burst till this gets installed. I can't believe how blessed I am.  In fact, I am already working on the next mosaic that will be installed about a mile away from this wall.  I'll tell you about it soon... and also show you photos of these dandelions installed. The Foundation for Enhancing Communities is the fiscal sponsor of this project. The location for the mural was provided by the Hershey Trust Company as trustee for Milton Hershey School. The mural is sponsored through the generosity of The Hershey Company, Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, Catherine Hershey Schools for Early Learning, Hershey Entertainment & Resorts, Capital Blue Cross, Capital Construction Management, Hershey Federal Credit Union, McQuaide Blasko, and the Rotary Club of Hershey.