Art teacher Monica Chavarria engaged her 6th grade class in completing a door dedicated to local fiber artist Bisa Butler. Mrs. Butler, who currently teaches art for the South Orange-Maplewood School District, was born in Orange and raised in South Orange. She is known for her work fusing traditional quilting with modern collage techniques. Mrs. Butler visited Cleveland Street School on March 8, to view the work of the students who fashioned the door using her methods along with their portraits, completed in her style, donning the hall surrounding “her” door. It was a treat for the students to meet Mrs. Butler and to discuss her work. Mrs. Butler shared a framed piece she had completed featuring the Haitian artist Jean-Michel Basquiat and explained her reverence for his work and the names stitched around his portrait, recent slain African Americans who gave rise to the Black Lives Matter movement.
Dr. Cummins and Mrs. Butler attended Howard University in Washington, D.C.