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Young at art: Exhibitions put focus on talented high school artists
by Joan Durbin
jdurbin@neighbornewspapers.com
January 17, 2013 11:26 AM | 2764 views | 0 0 comments | 26 26 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The work of some of north Fulton’s most talented high school artists and artisans have traditionally been showcased in two major exhibitions in Roswell.

Now, for the first time, the annual high school art exhibition and competition, sponsored by the Roswell Fine Arts Alliance and the Roswell Visual Arts Center, and the high school ceramics show hosted by Roswell Arts Center West will run in tandem.

The shows kick off Jan. 25 with opening receptions at their respective venues and run through Feb. 8. The receptions are free and the public is invited.

“This way, people can have a whole evening of art,” said Laurianne Love, the city’s visual arts coordinator.

For the competition, art teachers from all north Fulton public high schools select and submit pieces done by their students.

Due to space constraints, only two works of photographic art, two pieces of three dimensional art and six two dimensional entries per school are accepted into the exhibition.

Occasionally, however, some last minute entries come in that are so exceptional that the show organizers scramble to find room.

“If I have to hang stuff from the ceiling or put it in the front window, I will,” Love said with a chuckle.

Judging the competition is Dr. Jackie Ellett, last year’s Art Educator of the year in Gwinnett County. Scholarships and awards in a variety of categories are presented to students by the Fine Arts Alliance.

The quality of the show has such a good reputation that it even draws art lovers who have no connection with any of the schools, Love said.

“We are so lucky to live in this area where we have so many wonderful public school art teachers and the work their students do is top notch,” she said. “The work they do is always introspective, because that’s the teen mindset. It’s very emotionally charged artwork.”

Over at Arts Center West, A.J. Argentina, studio supervisor and gallery director, is coordinating the high school ceramics exhibition.

“Each school has been asked to submit one work from eight different students to be included in the exhibition,” he said. “The exhibition will feature an assortment of ideas and subject matter that will be represented by hand-built sculptures ranging from vessels to figures, as well as forms made on the potter’s wheel.”

Roswell’s Clay Collective will sponsor three cash prizes, for best of show and two honorable mentions, selected by a panel of three members of the group.

“It’s always difficult to select the winners from such a wide range of works, but the group will work together with a set of both technical and aesthetic criteria to determine the three works that rise above the rest,” Argentina said.
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