Art Fills GA’s New Artium


Upper School students have been utterly surprised and left in awe of the art installations in Massey’s new atrium. This past fall, students haven’t been able to take their eyes off of the interactive and whimsical art, and have been curious to learn more about its origin.


The creative director behind this project is Sean Lahey, one of GA’s upper school film teachers. After taking an “object theater’’ class in college, where he created site installations and made hypothetical sets, he was inspired to create a similar atmosphere here at GA. With the new Visual Arts Center and renovations to the Performing Arts Center a new atrium space was created; however, there was no specific plan to utilize the space. 


Inspired by his college class, Lahey applied for an innovation grant to use the empty atrium space for art installations, which was approved. With this approval, Lahey began working right away to brainstorm ideas of how to utilize the space, and the first cycle of installations was revealed: GA’s very own miniature golf course. 


Talk about the golf course roamed the hallways at both GA and Brunswick Campuses, creating an interactive space, accessible to everyone. The installation was a replica of a real golf course, inclusive of faux greens, golf clubs, score sheets, and even golf pencils. It was available for about two weeks. 


Then came the next interactive object: trampolines. It’s safe to say that the trampolines were a hit within all grades. I witnessed a multitude of upper, middle, and lower school students bouncing their way to their next class. When physical objects aren’t taking over the space, the TVs on the brick wall play various films on repeat, ranging from old film class assignments to dance corps.


The main goal of this project is to create an interactive and artistic environment to attract more students and enhance and fuel connections. The current plan is to have a new installation every month, lasting for two weeks. However the whole process is really “come and go,” Lahey said, because it is dependent on the availability of the space. 


The current success of the project has led to initial discussions of the formation of a class, which would help curate the art; however, nothing is set in stone yet. Though this is a temporary project, it is safe to say that everyone will be gifted with plenty more installations before the year ends, and there is a good chance that we will see this project take over the space again next year.