Annual exhibition of the NHS art portfolio on display at the community center

Posted: Dec 26, 2018 2019 09:00

Ten students from Newtown High School were busy setting up the annual NHS Art Portfolio Exhibition last week, showcasing nearly 60 original works of art in the southeast hallway of the Newtown Community Center.

The works are visible until January 2, when a closing reception will take place. The reception is scheduled from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. that afternoon, and the public is invited to meet the student artists at that time.

Until then, their works can be viewed at all opening hours of the community center: Monday to Friday, 6 am to 9 pm; Saturday from 7 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. and Sunday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

This year’s exhibition features works by Jamie Davis, Isabel Harrington, Althea Hurley, Kaitlyn Kantor, Emilia Koziol, Moira McKinley, Kayleigh Roche, Abby Tainter-Gilbert, Alysha Wedler and Jack Wojtowicz.

The collection offers works in most mediums: pencil, charcoal, ink, acrylic, mixed media, oil on canvas, watercolor, pen and ink on paper, Nupastel and graphite.

With the works of each artist is a notebook. Each started life identically – measuring about 6 by 9 inches, with a pale brown paper cover – but each has had their cover decorated by an artist and now serves as a guest book, in the hopes that the public will leave comments for the duration of the show.

After years of display at the CH Booth Library, the exhibit has moved this year to the newly opened municipal building on the Fairfield Hills campus.

Carol Skolas, who teaches the Art Portfolio class at the NHS, said she and the young artists “love the new space”.

“It will give us a lot of visibility,” she said on December 19, when setting up the exhibition. A series of panels were once again loaned to the high school group by the Newtown Creative Arts Society (SCAN), on which the works were hung last Thursday afternoon.

“We are grateful to SCAN for the loan of these panels,” said Ms. Skolas. The community center, she said, does not yet have a way to display the art.

While Ms. Skolas was at the community center for the installation last week, it was the students who were in charge of hanging up their screens setup. Representing works created since the start of the current school year, most of the students have five or six pieces on display. Moira McKinley, however, has ten works in view, thanks to a collection of portraits grouped into five frames.

The AP Portfolio Class won’t be the last time these students present their work to the public. “They are the best students,” said Ms. Skolas. “These are artists who are going to art college or wanted to take a higher level class this year.”

Works in a myriad of media have been hung on panels in the southeast hallway of the Newtown Community Center. Almost 60 works, representing the talent of ten students from the Newtown High School Art Portfolio, are on display every day until January 2. A closing reception is scheduled for this afternoon. —Photos of bees, Hicks

NHS Fine Arts Professor Carol Skolas discusses work placement with Abby Tainter-Gilbert, one of ten students with works on display in the NHS Portfolio Show this academic year.

Althea Hurley used cardboard and charcoal to create this piece, titled “Busy Hive”.

Ali Fernand was the first person to use the NHS Portfolio Show guest books last week, when she left a comment for Jaime Davis, seen in the background.