CDO Elementary Students Show Off Art in Balboa Park Museum Exhibit

Artist in Residence Program Bears Fruit

The auditorium at the San Diego Museum of Art (SDMA) in Balboa Park buzzed with excitement on Saturday, February 22, as an art exhibit reception for 4th and 5th graders from Casa de Oro Elementary was in full swing. It was the culmination of a unique six-week Artist in Residence program provided by the museum. Arts Education Council (AEC) members provided free bus transportation for students and their parents to the museum to view the exhibition, organized and showcased the artwork, and provided food for the reception. The students acted as tour guides for their families, sharing their personal art experience while proudly presenting their work —acrylic landscapes, colorful art tiles and ethnic masks.

The Artist in Residence program is an intensive arts education experience in which the students are encouraged to use creative thinking, imagination, and innovation in various projects using different mediums. The six, 1.5 hour weekly lessons at Casa de Oro Elementary were taught by Colette Tamayo, an enthusiastic, knowledgeable instructor with a degree in Fine Arts from San Diego State University. Ms. Tamayo was hired by SDMA and is funded by the SDMA Arts Education Council. 

In addition to the art instruction and show, the program included an additional visit to the museum for the students to tour the gallery’s, to learn about artists, art history and museum programs, and to view exhibits. For many students, this was their first time in a museum. The program seeks to familiarize young people with the museum and encourages a lifelong interest in the arts.

The Arts Education Council is a voluntary organization whose primary mission is to provide comprehensive art education lessons for children in the Cajon Valley and La Mesa-Spring Valley School Districts. As well as supporting the artist in residence program, art-loving members of the AEC enjoy attending luncheons and exhibits, attending interesting art lectures, and visiting museums. The AEC is always looking for members that share a passion for art and kids’ education and would like to invite members of the Casa de Oro Alliance to join the organization.

If you are interested in providing art education to deserving young people from CDO and contiguous areas, contact Lydia Cee, a CDO Alliance member, at