ONTARIO — More than 100 students from grades 7 through 12 from Ontario, Nyssa and Huntington will get to show off their art this month.
The works from these students will hang in the Harano Gallery at Four Rivers Cultural Center from April 7-26. That gallery show will kick off with a reception at 5:30 p.m. Friday, said Dave Boyer, Nyssa Middle and High school art teacher.
The event has been put on for over 20 years, said Matt Stringer, executive director at Four Rivers Cultural Center, and this will be the tenth time space at the Cultural Center will be used.
“We try and focus the best of our efforts on serving the school districts,” Stringer said. “We try and expose kids to everything so that they might want to pursue it.”
The student art show will comprise multiple mediums, including oil pastel, pen and ink, color pencil, mixed media, and ceramic.
“Some of the art is incredible,” said Brian Hobbs, Ontario Middle School art teacher, who has between 30 to 40 students participating in the art show.
Unlike previous years, students whose art is being shown in the gallery that are part of Hobbs’ art class were asked to volunteer their artwork, instead of being a requirement of the class, the Ontario Middle School art teacher said.
For Boyer, all 60 students were required to submit two pieces of work for the art show, although the requirement is not part of the art teacher’s curriculum.
“If they want to get a career in arts, they need to get their work out there,” Boyer said.
The art teacher went on to say that two of his students are actually pursuing a career in art after high school. Boyer encourages it.
“I always tell them that they have a greater chance of becoming a professional artist than they do a professional athlete,” he said.
While some have that dedication to their art, displaying their work is easier for some than others, however, Boyer admitted.
“But doing this can get their name out in the community,” he said.
Because he teaches both middle and high school art students, Boyer said that he has more than a few who join up in sixth grade at the start of middle school and continue to take his art classes up through twelfth grade.
“The changes that they make in their work is incredible,” Boyer said.
If a student agreed, their work on display during the show is up for sale.
Normally, the work at the show would be judged by faculty from the art department at Treasure Valley Community College, by category, but this year that is not the case.
Also, while Nyssa middle and high school, Ontario Middle School, and Huntington High School art students are participating, the original plan was to have Ontario High School and Vale students participate as well, Boyer said.
But during the first evening of set up, Boyer said he was unable to coordinate with the high school and Vale schools.
Hunter Marrow is a news reporter at The Argus Observer. He can be reached at (541) 823-4822 or by emailing hunterm
@argusobserver.com. To comment on this story, go to www.argusobserver.com.