Julianna Mariani ’24
As many people know, the freshmen here at the College of the Holy Cross have to take a Montserrat course. During the summer enrollment process, all of us freshies had to choose six different Montserrat courses that we would be willing to take and then got placed in one. Anyway, the Montserrat class that I was given is titled “Drawing Connections” with the second semester being “Visualizing Systems.” It’s an art course in which we are very literally “drawing connections” between ourselves and bigger issues in society. Our main task this semester has been creating a mural that actually went on display yesterday in Dinand. I decided to write this article for two reasons: one is to convince you all to go see the mural because, duh, free advertising, and two is to give you the insider scoop. The real behind the scenes if you will. If you go see the painting you’ll be able to look at our process through a series of videos and blurbs on our website, but if you don’t feel like making the trek across campus I’ll give you a taste.
Someone once asked me how I would describe my Montserrat in one word. My answer to that was “chaotic,” with no hesitation. This isn’t a bad thing, surprisingly enough. I would take it again in a heartbeat, but I still stand by that response. We are, without a doubt, a chaotic class. Each of us has a very different skill set. Some took AP art in high school and other people had never set foot in an art room in their life.
I chose Drawing Connections as one of my six possible classes because I was interested in art at the college level. If you asked my class, only about three or four other people would say the same. That leaves 15 people who wouldn’t, which is why it came as quite a shock when our professor informed us all that we would be creating a mural for the rest of the school to see. I’m pretty sure that was everyone’s exact reaction actually. Lots of “Wait. People are going to see it?” and “Like… an actual mural?” Our professor was extremely encouraging and really hyped up all of our artistic abilities, so after a little bit of coaxing, we got to work on the cherry blossom tree that you can see now in the library’s gallery.
We titled it “Blossoming Thoughts” which, coincidentally, is also the title of my article because I can’t pass up a double meaning opportunity. If I’m being brutally honest here, the mural was a little touch and go for a minute. At one point it looked a bit more like a pink dalmatian on top of a floating log than a cherry tree, but after some trial and error we made a masterpiece, if I do say so myself. I’m a bit biased though, so you’ll really all have to go see for yourselves. (See what I did there?)