Bodden Town Primary School students returned from summer break Monday to find a colorful surprise waiting for them.

The school building now features five murals painted by Carlos Garcia, a self-taught muralist who is making a name for himself painting vivid murals on walls around Cayman.

Paintings of a Cayman blue iguana, a Cayman parrot, a map of Cayman Brac, and two underwater scenes adorn the school walls. Colorful tropical fish, dolphins, turtles, coral and other marine life decorated the walls of Molly Farrell’s Art Building and a side entrance to the school. The map of the Sister Island is on a wall outside the lunchroom, while a friendly looking iguana now welcomes parents and students at the school’s entrance. The Cayman parrot can be seen on the wall next to the Reception class.

Second-grader Cameron Dilbert said the paintings are amazing and he loves to see the creatures of the ocean. He’s also happy to be back at school, he said.

Sapphire Ebanks, another second-grader, said the paintings are really pretty to look at and she especially loves the Cayman parrot.

The surprise was orchestrated by the Bodden Town Primary School parent-teacher association, through the artistic skills of Mr. Garcia.

Kimberly Watler, the school’s new principal, said Bodden Town Primary School previously had been known for its artistry and the PTA Executive Committee was inspired to bring this reputation back to the school.

“We thought the best way to inspire young minds would be to add color and life and [for it] be visible to all,” she said. “It was then decided that the best way to achieve this was to have large murals. We just didn’t want any paintings, but instead we wanted paintings which said ‘Cayman,’ so we decided to showcase some of Cayman’s cultural icons on the walls.”

Mr. Garcia took three days to complete the paintings, which were paid for by the PTA.

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