Maurice the Moose
About the Piano
Their piano explores the deep connection between the unbridled imagination of the child and the structured landscape of the world around them. Children see the world for its possibilities, so their piano connects their students’ imaginative drawings, paintings and wood burnings on various wood discs with their own mark-making to create a landscape that allows viewers to embrace this wonder. Their piano is a testament to the power of collaboration. When multiple hands work together in art, as in life, magic is the result. The students were thrilled and inspired by seeing a video of Thiesen and Neufeldt gluing their wood discs on to the piano in New York City. They also loved seeing Maurice (the moose) guarding over their beloved art on the front of the piano. The original inspiration for Maurice was a grade 4 student's drawing, so it was especially exciting for them to see the finished project. Thiesen and Neufeldt want to thank Sing For Hope for providing them with this amazing opportunity. They have loved the process, the connections built between communities and the chance to promote arts education.
About the Artist
Shannon Thiesen and Chelaine Neufeldt are both teachers and visual arts specialists at ASIA North Poplar Elementary in Abbotsford, B.C. Canada. Shannon Thiesen teaches 5th grade and Visual Art, while Neufeldt teaches Kindergarten and Visual Art. Both are professional artists outside of school, frequently showing their paintings at local galleries and accepting commissioned work. Shannon Thiesen is the 2016 Abbotsford Arty Award recipient in Traditional Media and is the 2015 and 2016 Fraser Valley Art Battle champion. She paints with fluid, aggressive brushstrokes and prefers organic subject matter. Chelaine Neufeldt holds a Fine Arts degree and explores the human form and abstraction in her often large-scale works. Both artists find great joy in working together on the same canvas at the same time, usually before a public audience. The marriage of their two unique styles lends itself to brilliant contrast, depth and interest that might only be possible to achieve collectively.