The art of giving: Lake Oswego students showcase their talent
Some of Eleni Antonis' earliest memories are of painting with her grandmother. Now, to honor the experiences the two shared, she sold some of her late grandmother's work at a local art show — with the money helping other kids have great art experiences with their family members.
On Friday, March 18, the Lake Oswego Youth Action Council hosted its fifth annual Teen Art Show. Over 35 student artists from around the community and surrounding cities showcased and sold their artwork ranging from paintings to pottery and jewelry.
"The motivation behind the art show is really just to showcase all of the amazing art that local kids have been making," said Cydny Fletcher, treen and youth program coordinator for the Lake Oswego Parks and Recreation Department. "One of the things that I really love to see is when kids are actually selling their art, and they're so excited when people are excited to buy it. I think sometimes they're surprised by that, and when you're a kid, it is so easy to underestimate yourself. "
For Clarice Chang, a freshman at Lakeridge High School, sharing her art with others was the main reason she attended the event.
"I've been interested in art and painting since I was little, and my parents really encouraged me to pursue it," Chang said. "One day I hope to find a job in art, and I really think this event will help me showcase what I've done."
Although Antonis displayed some of her own collages at the show, most of the art on her table consisted of acrylic paintings that her grandmother made before she died last year.
"I wanted to sell my grandmother's art because I wanted people to see how talented she was, and she would have loved that people are enjoying her art," Antonis said. "And all of the proceeds I make are going to go to help UNICEF Ukrainian aid. I felt that if I'm gonna make money selling her art, I should put it somewhere where she would have liked it to go."
Although Antonis took it a step further with her charitable efforts, all of the student artists who attended the art show were asked to donate one of their pieces for a silent auction benefiting the Children's Healing Art Project in Portland.
The nonprofit provides art supplies to families in the Portland metro area that are battling a medical challenge, according to Faye Pendergrass, the program director at CHAP. For the past five years, the art show has partnered with CHAP. This year the auction raised about $850.
"It feels really cool to have the money going to a good charity and that you're not keeping the profits for yourself; it's going to something bigger than that," said Lakeridge High School senior Abby Barker.
Barker said she attended the event to showcase some of her work like clay pottery and paintings. She heads to Western Washington University in the fall to study art.
"I typically try to take inspiration from my own personal experiences, like being a queer person or going to sunrises and painting those," Barker said. "I think (the art show) is just a really great opportunity for all of us to get our work out there and give back to others."
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