A new multicultural mural at Henkle Middle School was completed this week with the help of 39 HMS students and will be placed on permanent display on the east exterior wall at the entrance to the football field.  Phoebe Kruchoski, one of our teachers who helped organize this project, had her students from her Community Project elective class work on the mural in addition to the other students.

Designed by Michelle Yamamoto, member artist at 301 Gallery in Hood River, art teacher at Wildwood Academy and artist for Art In Education of the Gorge designed it to pay homage to different cultural heritages that represent significant history in the greater Gorge area.

The Columbia River Gorge represents the life it gives to our orchard industry and sustenance and joy it brings to the gorge residents and visitors.

Michelle wanted the mural to have an inspirational message  “No Act of Kindness No Matter How Small Is Ever Wasted” and Principal Haley Ortega wanted to make sure both English and Spanish were represented.

There are two entities to acknowledge with regard to this project:

The Washington State Arts Commission and The White Salmon Valley Education Foundation, which funded the writing and administering of the WSAC grant. Thank you as well to CJ at Morgan paint for providing all the paint supplies and The Home Depot for donating the varnish.  

Symbology

Native American Indians regarded the grizzly bear with awe and respect

and is considered a sign of strength. The grizzly is also Henkle Middle School’s mascot.

The meaning of the Eagle symbol was to signify courage, wisdom and strength and its purpose was to carry prayers to the Creator.

A common Mexican symbol of the Day of the Dead celebration are the skulls (calaveras), Mexicans are one of the few people in the world that celebrate the dead with a sense of happiness, respect and humour. 

The Japanese Dragon represents wisdom, strength, force for good, wind/water.