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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The weekend in review

Student Art Show 2010

Every year our school has a student exhibit. Hundreds of pieces of work are on display for a weekend. This past weekend was that event! Its a great showing of work - but for art teachers, it is a LOT of work to get it put together. We use the school library - which has to be radically rearranged. First, our classes take all the furniture out of the library and move it into storage. For a school our size, this means about 50 tables and several hundred chairs. The book stacks remain, but that's all that stays put. Then we erect many peg board pieces that will hold the art. This necessitates moving those from storage at the other end of the school with all the hardware that is necessary. Once those are set up, everything is draped in black sheeting and then the hanging begins. Each piece must be matted, clipped, and hung with the appropriate hardware. Students help with this, but need a lot of direction for hanging with some balance and so that it is 'readable' to the viewer with an interesting flow of color or genre. Creating visual impact is something most students do not innately possess!

Once the show is hung, the judging occurs. This is done by outside judges - but as a teacher - ribbons must be hung (many of them!) That all precedes the reception that is often held and the open to the public hours for parents, friends, and community members. These open hours must be supervised. Some of those hours are during school so that fellow students may visit. Some of those hours are in the evening and on Saturday.

After all this, during which time the regular library function does not occur, we disassemble everything from 7:15 to 11:00 am on the next Monday morning - taking all evidence of an art exhibit down and return the library to its original function!

It is a lot of work ~ but one in which our students enthusiastically participate! The photo above only shows 1 directional view. There was much to the left and right of this photo and many pieces displayed behind. This doesn't give the full sense of how much was there to be seen! Besides 2-D works, our students also displayed their work with ceramics and metal smithing. Some of our architecture students also put their 3-D models on display.

All in all, it was a resounding success! But, for those of us who pull it together every year - rest and recuperation is the next order of business!!

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