Photo Showcase of Cupertino Art


Kavya Kaushal

Walking onto the Cupertino High School campus for the first time in the summer of 2018, I distinctly remember looking at the TINO mural located on the wall adjacent to the bike racks. At one point, that enlarged painting was an essential piece of our school. Although the renovation during the pandemic changed the mural’s central location, art is still everywhere around us. From the small projects students bring home to the architecture of the houses we live in, art continues to be prevalent in various locations. 

Utility boxes and painted walls are some ways art has shown itself throughout Cupertino’s diverse community. One such example is the 2015 collaboration (“Energized by Art”) between the Hongyun Art School (a local Cupertino art studio) and the Cupertino Fine Art Commission. They mutually agreed to host an environmental-themed art competition available for all Cupertino Youth. The winning design would later be painted on utility boxes to raise awareness regarding Earth Day. Utility box art has become so common that many cities, including San Jose, have adopted formal utility box art programs. According to the City of San Jose website, interested applicants propose their designs to the City Public Art Committee, reviewing and approving submissions. 

A more recent case is the Cupertino Library Expansion Mural, which sprung as a side project during the Cupertino Library’s renovation. The Cupertino City Manager reached out to Hongyun Art School to collect student designs for an 8×40 foot mural. Prompted to fit a fun, family-friendly theme, student artists painted on a patio wall, temporary for up to one year. Said Menlo-Atherton senior and project designer Indira Abhyanker, “It was very rewarding to both empower young kids to work on a project of this scale and to see the impact of our artwork as people’s faces lit up when they noticed the mural.”  

The presence of art in public areas continues to have indirect positive implications on the public.  Not only is public art accessible to all so it can be appreciated at any moment, but it also adds an identity to the community it is in. Art spreads a unique interpretation to each pair of eyes that lies eyes on it and has immense aesthetic value. For some artists, creation is a healing process. Said AP Art Student and senior Lily Nguyen-Wilson, “Art is a unique way of communicating. I personally use art as a way to process events or express concepts that I believe other people would like to see my unique take on.” Said art enthusiast and sophomore Alisha Sankhe, “Art, to me, has always been about expressing my thoughts in a way that everyone could understand. When I was younger, I didn’t quite know how to communicate what I was thinking very clearly, but as I started to learn to paint and draw, I could represent all of my crazy ideas in color.”

As time goes on, one thing can be agreed upon: Art will never lose its value. Although Tino may not have its eye-catching mural near the bike racks anymore, art can be found in other places on campus, including the various art courses or ASB’s seasonal window paintings. With our Cupertino city committees and councils coming together to adopt art initiatives in the past years, it’s safe to say that Cupertino’s artists, especially the youth, are celebrated. Surely, we can anticipate future opportunities for growing artists as well within the Cupertino public realm.