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Departing American teacher paints mural as gift for Kinmen

2016/06/27 17:31:00

Taipei, June 27 (CNA) An English teacher from the United States has left a gift of a mural on the front wall of the school where he has been teaching in Kinmen.

Adrian Brandon, who studied art and architecture at Pitzer College in Los Angeles, said he invited more than 50 third to sixth graders at Anlan Elementary School to participate in the project.

He said the students had a better knowledge of Kinmen than he did and the inspiration for the mural came from them.

The mural shows two hands, each covered in colorful images that are representative of Kinmen County, which lies some 15 kilometers off the coast of China and was once a battlefront in an armed conflict between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait.

The images include a baseball player, athletes in a race, oysters, an artillery shell, lanterns against a night sky, and the national flag of the Republic of China.

Brandon said the images were drawn from paintings that the participating students did on paper, depicting their own images of Kinmen.

In the students' paintings, there were birds, horses, Kinmen's iconic Wing Lion God, and the popular locally distilled Kaoliang liquor, he said.

The teacher, whose work contract ends in July, said he also invited kindergarten children to make handprints on the wall to ensure that they would never forget the school.

On the question of why he chose the concept of palms for the mural, Brandon said hands symbolize love and for many infants, they represent the process of feeding.

The painting symbolized Kinmen's cradling and nourishment of its children, he said.

Brandon described Kinmen as a unique island with friendly people who welcomed him, which he said made him want to leave a symbol of his good memories there.

(By Emmy Huang and Elizabeth Hsu)
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