UCLA Community School: 5th Annual Art Auction to Support College-bound Seniors

"Stronger Together" highlights student creativity and building community of learners, Dec. 7 at RFK Community Schools campus.

UCLA Community School will hold its 5th annual Silent Art Auction on Thursday, December 7, 4:30-6 p.m., showcasing the work of middle and high school students. Musical performances by Lower School students, the Music Club, and the school’s Korean drum group will round out the social evening.

Each year, proceeds go to support college-bound seniors. This year, the scholarship has been named the Angel Scholarship, to honor Angel Zelaya, a UCLA Community School student who died earlier this fall.

“Angel embodied everything an art teacher could want in a student,” says Grace Maddox, who has taught art at UCLA Community School since it opened in 2009. “Angel was inquisitive, a budding artist, and a true original.”

Students in Grace Maddox’s art class combine technology and the craft of painting to create, de-stress.

Maddox, who teaches both middle and high school art classes, started the Silent Art Auction in 2012, honoring the school’s mission to shape students into self-directed learners who are assets to their community and society.

“It started small but the support has been huge,” she says. “We’ve raised over $13,500, and our scholarship has helped eight graduating students so far. That’s why we are still doing it after five years.”

Zaina, a senior, previously took an art class in the 9th grade.

“Art to me at first, wasn’t interesting,” she says. “But we read books here and went to the museum, so it’s really intriguing, I’m into it now. [We learn] where art comes from and about the different people who create it. It makes me see things differently, I like that.”

Ornaments on art teacher Grace Maddox’s desk wait to adorn the holidays of UCLA Community School supporters.

Brenda, a senior, first took Maddox’s class in the 7th grade. She echoes the sentiments of many of Maddox’s student who take art classes to unwind and alleviate stress at either the beginning or end of the school day.

“It’s very calming, and it’s a good feeling to see the outcome of your painting when it’s done,” Brenda says.

“People get stressed so it’s something that they should do as a stress reliever,” says Zaina. “You do your own thing, you paint. That is a very nice feeling that people should have.”

Art classes also build students’ problem-solving skills.

“Students make their own choices with selecting their line qualities, colors, and composition,” says Maddox. “They get a blank canvas and they are the ones putting their marks on it.”

“Sometimes, I will paint something and it’s not the right color so I have to come up with a solution right at that moment, to blend more colors and make it look better,” says Brenda. “If I’m already into the project and have completed most of it, I can’t just throw it away.”

Aliyah, a junior, has taken three years of art at UCLA Community School. She says that learning art history has supported her other classes.

“My English class is AP Literature,” she says. “There are some contexts [in art] that help me with that class; it just connects.”

The UCLA Community School Silent Art Auction is supported by IKEA, Trader Joe’s, Costco, Subway, LAUSD, and the law firm of Perez & Caballero, where the artwork was displayed and bid upon previous to the UCLA Community School event.

The Silent Art Auction will take place in the Multipurpose Room. UCLA Community School is located at 701 S Catalina St, Los Angeles, CA 90005, at the RFK Community Schools campus.

To attend the Art Auction or to support the UCLA Community School Angel Scholarship, contact uclacommunity@gmail.com.