Art Expo wows onlookers and inspires greatness

By Brenden Jin and Joey Phung on May 7, 2018

CVCHS Arts Expo Vert for websiteClayton Valley Charter High School held its 8th annual Art Expo on April 12, showcasing work that students created throughout the year.

This successful event had more than 500 submissions. Katie Nolan, the art design and AP art history/AP studio teacher, said it was the highest amount of entries to date with “a lot more student participation.” Visual arts teacher Evan Hughes said the Art Expo also included a few pieces from other schools, such as Pine Hollow and Diablo View middle schools.

Work falls into several categories, such as drawings, paintings, sculptures, digital art (graphic design, motion pictures, animation, video productions) and photography. In order to prevent bias, there were no parent or teacher judges. The 17 judges were either professional artists or others within the art world. One of the judges was an animator for the new Scooby Doo movie.

The Michelangelo D’Onofrio Arts Foundation and the Clayton Valley/Concord Rotary Club co-sponsored event with The Foundation awarding cash prices to 33 students who demonstrated outstanding skills in the visual and digital arts.

The first-place winners from each category received $100, with $50 for second and $25 for third. Students get to keep their creations after showing them off at the Art Expo. However, one student sold his work and made a couple hundred dollars in addition to his prize money.

The main reason for the Art Expo is to show off how students have improved and to highlight the skills they have been learning and practicing throughout the school year. “It definitely benefits the student by showing the work that they are producing throughout the year,” noted Kelsey Thomas, the digital graphic arts and computer graphics teacher.

It can also be beneficial for the students to have others admire and judge their work. ¨Every year we do this, there is a minimum of 10-15 teachers who come up to me and say, ‘I didn’t know so and so was so talented.’ So this is clearly a great way to showcase our students talent in a way that many other student artist may not be able to,” Hughes said.

Before students could submit their art, they had to speak to one of the art teachers at Clayton Valley. Then they signed a form giving the school permission to display their creations. The works had to be completed and submitted to the teachers by the beginning of March.

All of the students who submitted works were ecstatic to see them being displayed for the Clayton Valley community. The Art Expo is a great way to show their friends, family and other teachers how hard they have been working and how talented they are.

Aidan Jackson took home first place in the video category. “I almost didn’t enter my video and I didn’t expect to win,” the senior said. “But I’m glad people enjoyed my work.”

Senior Ben Acebo said the Art Expo “was and always is really cool. It’s fun to see everyone’s art and even my own art up on the boards.”

The Art Expo is extremely popular and will undoubtedly be back again next year.

“It was a great way to be inspired by the artistic genius of others, and it was personally life changing for me,” said freshman Mia Pierce.

Brenden Jin and Joey Phung are students at CVCHS.

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