A wonderful opportunity has arisen for Alonzo, as he has been commissioned to create a mountain lion sculpture for Lyons Elementary School. Teacher Mr. Timothy Ambrose tells how this project came to be:
“From September through December 2015, Lyons Elementary School 5th grade students studied human rights. They read novels with characters who had disabilities and who experienced injustices, while building empathy. They studied injustices in slavery and read stories about African American history. Rex Peoples from the Colorado Blues Society visited and discussed these important topics and told stories through blues music, continuing to build empathy. They read and interpreted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, examining each article. The final visit for the 5th grade human rights project was from Alonzo, who has visited the school previously as well. The students learned about Alonzo’s background and savant syndrome, and watched him demonstrate his sculpting. Alonzo’s message and presence resonated with this class in a powerful way.
The day after Alonzo’s visit, they began to meet in groups on their own. Then they met with teachers, our principal, and parents, trying to see if they could raise money for a mountain lion sculpture as a legacy project for the school. It was important to them to become a customer of Alonzo’s art, because during his presentation, he told them that one of his goals is to have lots of customers. The 5th graders prepared and shared a presentation with the PTO as first steps for fundraising and reached out to the community for support. After many months of planning and organizing with community, family and PTO assistance, the 5th graders raised money to become a customer, and commissioned a 14-inch long sculpture of a mountain lion for the school as a legacy project.”
Alonzo has been perfecting his mountain lion. Soon it will go into the production process, turning his wax/clay model into a bronze sculpture. It should be ready for presentation to the school in the fall.
The whole connection of Alonzo with Lyons Elementary School has been beautifully facilitated by friend and PATH partner Robert Boggess.