New Roads School in Santa Monica asked AKA to add graphic content to the chain link fences that surround school buildings.

NRS is a progressive institution, with a mission of empowerment, leadership and social justice / responsibility.  Accordingly we drew from a list of the school’s cultural icons, making portraits that would be assembled on the walls by the students themselves.

Chain link fencing is a grid,  highly suitable to receiving pixelated or digital images.  We used cross stitch software to create the patterns, and selected the colors from fabric that was donated to the school.  In one afternoon, the students of the school created 5 portraits corresponding to the classrooms behind them – creating the school environment with their own hands.

Project Objectives:

1. to show that “ordinary” walls are anything but – any surface can become a canvas 

2. to demonstrate the easy transfer of digital imagery to chain link, showcasing the digital and scale-independent nature of craft.  (XL Latch Hook)

3. to create a memorable project for students and the community, guiding students to physically create the school walls and imbue them with meaning.

Portraits completed:  Arundhati Roy, Gregory Hines, Nelson Mandela, Gandhi, Laurie Anderson.