Art exhibit shows off full year's worth of hard work

Posted: Thursday, December 19, 2002

The artists responsible for this weekend's show at the Kenai Visitors and Cultural Center have mastered the mediums of monochromatic drawing and print making, dabbled in watercolor and tempera panting and shown their prowess at sculpture and graphic arts -- but they much prefer working with glitter glue.

The artists are participants in the Kenai Boys and Girls Club art program and range in age from 6 to 15. The show is the yearly Boys and Girls Clubs Fine Arts Exhibit, on display today through Saturday in the conference room at the visitors center.

There will be a grand opening of the art exhibit today from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the center with refreshments and an awards ceremony. All of the artwork displayed is arranged into age categories and judged by volunteer community members. The first place winner in each category will have their artwork matted and shrink-wrapped, donated by Frames and Things. All club members who entered will receive a certificate of participation.

The fine arts exhibit is part of a national Boys and Girls Clubs competition, sponsored by L'Oreal. Winning pieces from the Kenai competition will be forwarded on to compete in the Western regional competition. The winners from regional competitions then are forwarded on to the national competition at the Boys and Girls Club of America's Atlanta headquarters. Forty national winners will be selected, and the artwork will be displayed in the national Fine Arts Exhibit at Boys and Girls Club of America's 2002 national conference, and at other special events during the year.


Examples of a Thanksgiving turkey project.

"You would not believe how excited the kids are (about the exhibit), they're jazzed," said Kenai Boys and Girls Club art teacher Shauna Thornton.

The artwork on display was created throughout the year by club members in the art program. Some of the displays are seasonally-themed creations made as decorations for local events. For instance there are table centerpieces made for the Kenai Senior Citizens Center Thanks-giving dinner, angels made for the food bank's Christmas dinner and ornaments made for Udelhoven's Christmas tree in the Village of Trees.

Other projects were done for fun in the art room at the Kenai Clubhouse, like window decals, snowscapes and drawings of the northern lights.

"The kids say 'we'd like to lean how to make this,' so we go with it," Thornton said.

About 150 budding artists have artwork displayed in the fine arts exhibit, making for a lively collage of styles, colors, designs and approaches to art. In a Thanksgiving section of one display, a group of colored turkeys are posted next to each other.

Some turkeys are meticulously colored with great care taken to have a color scheme and to stay inside the lines. Others show a more unrestrained approach to art, with rainbow-colored turkey plumes and a mass of real feathers stuck on for texture.

"It made me cry going through it all," Thornton said of sorting through the year's projects in preparation of the exhibit. "I'm proud of their work."

The students have their favorites of the projects they've done throughout the year. Taliah Earll, 9, enjoyed making Fourth of July-themed table centerpieces.

"That one was cool," she said. "I just liked the colors and how it all sticks out like that."

Jordan Jackman, 9, liked making window stickers of glue and paint the best. Marina Rosenbaum, 9, liked the Christmas cards the students made by cutting out paper.

Kara Colton, 10, also enjoyed making the Christmas cards.

"I liked drawing Snoopy and the little birdie guy on it," she said.

Colton's second-favorite project was making paper angels. Why?

"We got to do it with glitter glue."

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