Celebrating Life Through A World of Color

by | Mar 19, 2020 | Closeup

We encounter so many things: the people around us, the places we have gone, and the memories of it all are collected to create who we are. These things are like colors that show the ups and downs, the great and indifferent and all the beauty that you bring forth with each thing adding a little piece like the way an artist adds paint to a canvas. While our community is slowly healing from the tragedy of November 14, 2019 the families that were greatly impacted are working to put back the pieces of their lives. In light of this time, Kiki Egetoe, a senior at Saugus High School, has used her creative expression to produce portraits of her classmates that were lost on that day: 15-year-old Gracie Muehlberger and 14-year-old Dominic Blackwell. “I wanted to make something that showed them for the beautiful people they were before that day.” Kiki even created a piece for the Berhow family. “I do not excuse what he did, but his family knew him differently than the community and I wanted to give her something that reminded her of that person before this day.”
Like most of Kiki’s art, her artistic approach stems from memories from her daily life. “When I started painting in the expressionist style, I used to take old photos and recreate them, I remember one of my first drawings was of me and this kid when I visited South America.” In her art space, you find carefully made pieces in spirited colors that in the nature of an artist, she feels her work is never finished until it feels right. “When I was working on Dominic, I did not like how it turned out at first, but I kept playing with more colors and it turned out better. I want to make sure any of my projects are worth giving to someone.” Although she did not know the students, she felt personally connected to each one, and to commemorate their life she recreates old photos of them onto a blank canvas.
Kiki is finishing her last year at Saugus and hopes that these portraits for the grieving families will give them some semblance of happiness as they begin to move forward. Next year, Kiki will attend Brigham Young University in Hawaii. “This was my top choice and I am so excited to go.” Kiki plans to double major in art and biology. “With this double major, I want to become an occupational therapist with a basis in art.”
As Kiki finishes her senior year, she looks forward to watching our community become once again the amazing place it has been known to be. “I wish that day never happened and I wish I could do so much more for the families who were affected but I know with time we will get back to a sense of normalcy and things will get better.”
To see more of Kiki’s work please follow her on Instagram: https://instagram.com/kiki.egetoe.