Local students get their art on for new public show

Art lovers, especially those who delight in discovering new talent, should be circling January 13 on their calendar.

That’s when the fifth annual exhibition of artworks from graduating students at Banting Memorial High School (BMHS) opens at the Gibson Cultural Centre in Alliston. Since its inception, the show has served as a focal point for the senior visual arts classes at the school.

In addition to showcasing their artwork for the community, one of the goals of the show is to provide a professional experience for the participants: from conception through art production, curatorial decision making, advertising, installation, and exhibition. In all, 19 students will be participating in the event.

The work began in September, when the Grade 12 classmates decided to explore their ideas through acrylic or oils.

“After three years of skill building and applying the creative process, a significant portion of the senior program is self-directed by the students,” school arts department leader, Rachel Evans, told Simcoe Review. “Each student proposes an artistic problem and sets out a plan to solve it through a personal body of work.  In conjunction with the teacher, the student establishes learning goals and success criteria for their pieces in order to meet the expectations for the course.”

“They are a very cohesive group,” she added. “They are thoroughly supportive of each other and frequently provide feedback as their work progresses. As their teacher, it is an absolute privilege and joy to work with such a dedicated and hard-working group of students.  They truly are an inspiration.”

“Surfacing: New Paintings by Graduating BMHS Students,” runs from January 13 through February 24, with an opening day reception from 1-4 p.m., at the Gibson Cultural Centre, 63 Tupper St. West, Alliston. The gallery is open 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.

The photo illustration, created by student Shannon Milne, is modelled on Raphael’s School of Athens using a montage of the participating artists.

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