Erupting with creativity at Arts and Technology High School
It will be difficult to step onto Arts and Technology High School's campus and not become inspired — or at least get a slight urge to scratch that creative itch — during the West Linn-Wilsonville districtwide art show this month.
Artwork from students across all 16 district schools will be on display from 4-8 p.m. Saturday, May 18, at Art Tech. This year's theme — though not all artwork is created to fit the theme — is "Eruption" in honor of Mount St. Helen's Day, which falls on the same day as the art show.
"This is the only event that potentially puts kindergartner work next to work by a senior in high school. Visitors get to see all the developmental stages of art making and visual acuity in one place," said Christopher Shotola-Hardt, Wilsonville High School art teacher.
Art Tech senior Avra Carlson said it's interesting to see a variety of student artwork in one place.
"The school comes alive. It's magical to see all these kids' pictures (or other artwork) up on the walls," Carlson said.
Though not much is different with the art show this year, with the exception of the theme — last year's theme was "Perspective" — Art Tech art teacher Jennifer Cerasin said the difference is the new art that students create.
"It's another opportunity to see what our kids can do," Cerasin said.
Carlson is looking forward to showcasing her acrylic painting on canvas of a woman with lava flowing from her face.
"It kind of represents the ugliness and the beauty of humanity," Carlson said.
Other artwork that will be scattered around the inside of the school includes drawings, paintings and sculptures.
"Wilsonville High School and now Art Tech have jewelry programs," Cerasin added. "We have more and more cool student-made jewelry pieces on display."
There also will be several headpieces on display, designed with a Pacific Northwest theme. One student made a headpiece — an ornamental headband — with Homer Simpson from "The Simpsons" popping out of a doughnut, and another student crafted a headpiece with handmade local flowers weaved into a wreathlike crown.
In addition to the student art displays there will be a faculty art show.
"While one might surmise that the art teacher produces a lot of personal artwork, what about the principal's secretary, a third grade teacher, a cook in the kitchen, an instructional assistant or the math teacher?" Shotola-Hardt said. "Faculty in this district live full lives, and so many of us prioritize our creative time so that we remain balanced and centered and feel like we can continue to give, give, give. Visitors will be impressed with the breadth of subjects and media and the skill level."
Mairin Wilson, second grade teacher at Boeckman Creek primary will have her painting, "Our Lady of Vladimir" — her translation of the famous painting that was originally crafted by a Greek iconographer and given to Prince Vladimir of Russia — in the faculty art show.
Judy Kunkle, in nutrition services, is a multimedia artist and will have two pieces in the faculty art show for the first time.
"The first is a bee and honeycomb (piece), in which I incorporated a used vinyl record with my canvas and the second is a glass-on-glass mosaic piece, which has some recycled glass pieces in it. I like to challenge myself to incorporate at least something recycled into each piece," Kunkle said. "I'm excited to display with the students' art. I believe we are all on our creative journey, and I hope to inspire and be inspired by both staff and students."
In addition to art displays, there also will be T-shirt printing — the graphic is art supplies erupting from Mt. St. Helen's — a photobooth and a vending machine filled with art.
"Sometimes we have little paintings and drawings or photographs or bookmarks," Cerasin said about the vending machine art. "We have had magnets in the past, but I don't know if we will this year. ... Anything that will fit."
Outside there will be food trucks and performances by a West Linn High School student band, an Art Tech band and folkloric dancers from Boeckman Creek, Boones Ferry primary schools and Meridian Creek Middle School.
Two West Linn school art clubs also will be providing an art demonstration, showing people what they do in their art clubs.
This year, Cerasin said she hopes to have increased attendance from the broader WL-WV community.
"We really want to get more of our surrounding community involved rather than just the parents and students that have art up," Cerasin said. "We really would like our neighbors to understand more about what our school is and to involve the students in the community more as well."