Youth and artistryDavid Jensen stops by the Kruk Gallery every time a new exhibit opens. The University of Wisconsin-Superior student said he likes to see what’s going on artistically.
By: Maria Lockwood, Superior Telegram
David Jensen stops by the Kruk Gallery every time a new exhibit opens. The University of Wisconsin-Superior student said he likes to see what’s going on artistically.
“It’s always fun to see what others are doing,” said Jensen, a digital cinema major, photography minor. “I’m equally inspired and encouraged by what our youth are doing.”
Right now is the perfect time to take the pulse on youth art. This month, the gallery in the Holden Fine and Applied Arts Building features the work of Twin Ports students in kindergarten through 12th grade. Colorful ceramics, wire sculptures, crayon art, paintings and more share the spotlight.
“We’ve had several students walk in and out,” said gallery attendant Joe Stensland, a UWS graduate student. “They come in and say ‘Wow.’”
One piece in particular catches Stensland eye every time he sits down at the gallery desk. “Self portrait,” a digital piece by Superior High School student Rachel Dixon includes a swirling mix of objects dominated by a hand. Stensland said he could look at it for hours.
“Just fantastic work,” he said.
The first Twin Ports K-12 Art Exhibit was held at the Kruk Gallery last year. A truly Twin Ports effort, it included nearly 80 pieces of work from a dozen schools in Duluth and Superior.
“I think it came together beautifully,” said Kathy Hubbard, an assistant professor of art education at UWS who organized the show. She said it was a team effort that showcases the quality of work young artists can create.
About 100 works of art are on display this year, including pieces from six SHS students with special needs.
“I didn’t specifically focus on students with special needs,” Hubbard said. “This year they’re embedded as part of the show. I think it was an important thing to do.”
One SHS student, Ashley Salus, submitted a wall full of artwork, from a clay bowl textured with shell prints to paintings and collages, as part of her senior project.
Students have filled the gallery with color and texture.
A trio of three-dimensional art — a found art sculpture by Lowell Elementary School fourth grader Soren Hedegaard, a wire dragon made by fifth grader Ayla Syck of Congdon Elementary School and a feather-topped ceramic bowl by SHS senior Brittany MacDonnell — share a small table. A woven piece by Superior Middle School student Sarah King hangs beside a crayon-shaped drawing by Bryant kindergartener Nora Anderson and a drawing of “Red, Orange, Yellow and Pink Super Heroes” by Congdon Elementary School third grader Ben Austin.
“It’s nice to see the creativity you get from the minds of youth,” Stensland said.
The show is a boost for students too, Jensen said. Being able to see your own work hanging in a gallery is gratifying and helps build confidence.
“It energizes them to do more,” Jensen said.
The exhibit will remain on display through the month, with a closing reception for the public 5-7 p.m. Feb. 27. The gallery at 1805 Catlin Ave. is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays. The exhibit is free and open to the public.