By VARSHA BADAVIDE
Accompanying the events held for Fine Arts Week last week, UHS’ Fine Arts Department set up an art display, called the “348 Art Gallery”, showcasing a wide variety of artwork created by the 348 students enrolled in UHS’ art classes. Featuring a plethora of astonishing works including paintings, sketches, photography, graphically designed posters and ceramics, all of the art pieces presented expressed diverse themes and styles, communicating a different message with each artist’s work.
All throughout the week, students stopped by the gallery to view the featured artwork. Students shared their admiration for the artwork, after spending a good deal of time looking through every piece in the gallery.
“I enjoyed the art work,” junior Ashley Liu said. “I loved seeing the techniques and elements the students’ used in their own piece of art.”
New art teacher Ms. Delia Mudge added, “I do particularly like to see artwork that demonstrates a student’s innovation and bravery in communicating and utilizing their skills and understanding by making something that is a genuine expression.”
Personally, I also thoroughly enjoyed viewing each of the diverse pieces that were on display. However, my favorite part of the entire exhibition was the detailed sketches of different types of birds, which were drawn on old newspapers. All of the sketches were traced in ink pen, containing elaborate details pertaining to the bird that was drawn. The most prominent sketch that stood out to me in this section was an ink-lined sketch of a toucan, which was slightly bigger than the other birds. There was also an intricately detailed sketch of a tiger’s face, which was the only sketch of an animal that wasn’t a bird featured in that gallery section. All of the sketches were placed together in a collage style, with the newspapers and old texts overlapping each other, resulting in an aesthetically beautiful display.
All of the other artwork that was displayed was equally stunning and sensational. I enjoyed seeing the sense of realism that was conveyed in most of the paintings displayed. Observing the edits that were done to enhance the displayed photographs, each enhancing the photograph differently, was also interesting. The graphically designed posters all stood out with bright contrasting colors and eye-popping text. I was particularly awed by the incredibly designed ceramics pieces, which were all neatly crafted and glazed with immense eye to detail.
I wasn’t the only one to be impressed by the sheer amount of effort and detail that was present in the artwork that was shown at the 348 Art Gallery.
“I am so impressed by the quality of work and how the show is put together by all of the art teachers,” Mudge, who participated in Fine Arts Week for the first time, said. “It’s so inspiring to see the talent, creativity and unique expressions presented in each of the student’s work, as well as the collaborative pieces on display.”
I spoke to one of the many artists of the show, junior Alina Chen. Several of her painted works, which she had worked on throughout the year, were displayed in the gallery.
“I worked on many pieces about the topic of overuse of land resources, including paintings and ink drawings,” Chen, who is currently in Advanced Art, said. “I tried many styles of art including realism, surrealism, and abstract expressionism.”
Chen was happy to display several of her art pieces that she felt proud of in the gallery, as she had invested many hours into creating each unique work.
“I really like most of my art pieces. But some of them still need a little finish touches and I will still be working on them,” Chen said. “The black ink drawing is my favorite piece. When I was doing that piece, I was thinking about how humans can’t live without trees and land resources. So I drew these symbolic buildings around the world on a giant tree to show that humans coexist with nature. This piece is my favorite because I like the concept and enjoy [working] with ink pens.”
The 348 Art Gallery was a wonderful experience and opportunity to not only view the hard work of many UHS artists, but also to celebrate fine art itself.
“When artists share their art with others, they are completing the reason we make the art…because part of creating art is for ourselves and part [of it] is to communicate something to others,” Mudge said. “The show provides that opportunity, offering a potential experience for others that see [artists’] work [to feel] joy, curiosity, concern…. and [it has] a positive effect on others’ [creative] development as viewers.”