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Friday, February 13, 2009

Sculptures colour Valley College compound


Valley College Bushenyi has spruced its outlook with a couple of sculptures molded out of clay, steel and cement by its art students. Just as you slope to the school, a first time visitor is welcomed by a realistic sculpture of the Biblical Ark of Noah perched on which is a dove clutching a plant with its beak. It vividly captures the school’s motto, "Deliverance."

In the middle of the school compound are other interesting sculptures that carry an educational theme. One of the nameless pieces depicts a uniformed girl and boy engrossed in their books. The other is a bronze sculpture of a girl leaning leisurely on the shoulders of a man. Beneath them are a packet of Rex Cigarettes and an empty bottle of Uganda Waragi. The piece is titled Pleasure At Ease.

A few feet away is another piece with the same characters – they are seated on a tree stump and look old to clearly show that they are long out of school. Their backs are turned on each other; they look forlorn and miserable. Two clear balls of tears are rolling down the girl's face. The piece is now titled No Longer at Ease. The moral of the piece is direct: those who go to school to study but instead play games have no one to blame when many years later thet meet difficulties. It's an artistic story of "you reap what you sow."

And not to be outdone, the founder and director of the school had a life-like iconic sculpture of him complete with his walking stick planted at the school next to his office. It's so real that when I first entered the school compound, I almost thought it was the old man himself. A friend who was taking me around laughed out loud and said it was merely a scarecrow of a sculpture that has scared many unsuspecting truants before.

Besides adorning the school compound and making it look attractive, the Valley College sculptures are an example of how schools can make use of their students in a practically enterprising way and make them leave something behind for which they will be remembered.