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Granite Art Night

Wednesday, February 27, 20131005 views

The Granite Education Foundation’s “Art Night Live!” contest recently gave high schoolers from across the district a chance to show off their art skills. Among the 50-plus talented young artists competing, Kearns and Taylorsville students held their own.

The art night was held Jan. 28 at Taylorsville High School.

“This [competition] is live,” art night committee volunteer Tara McKee said. “They only have four hours.”

During those hours, the students had to create original pieces from start to finish in one sitting. Local artists Al Rounds, Susan Jarvis, Nathan Pinnock and Nathan Newman judged the students’ work in the basic categories of painting, drawing, mixed media, pottery and sculpting.

Five Kearns and Taylorsville High seniors went home with cash prizes and bragging rights that night. Aspen Clawson (Taylorsville) won the first place People’s Choice Award for the 2D categories (painting, drawing and mixed media). Alexandria Fernandez (also Taylorsville) won first place in wheel pottery.  From Kearns, Alex Ramos won second place in sculpting, Fernanda Aguirre won third in painting, and Elizabeth Hammack earned an honorable mention for sculpting.

Rounds was part of the team that started the competition 10 years ago, and has stayed with it as a judge all the way. The strict time limit was intended to give students a taste of what art is like in college and professional arenas, he said. Although high schoolers may feel productive if they turn out several art pieces in a school year, college students often have to produce an entire finished piece in every class period. Also, professional artists can spend eight to 10 hours every day doing nothing but artwork.

Giving the high school art students a four hour limit makes them focus, and shows them what they are capable of in terms of quantity and quality of work, Rounds said.

“We started this competition to draw the best out of the students,” he said.

The art night also featured a gallery stroll of the participants’ previous work for families and friends to enjoy.

Art students have relatively few chances during the year to show off their talents, unlike those involved in sports or other activities, but art night is one opportunity that really lets them shine, McKee said. Also, it’s fun for the spectators to watch their art unfold.

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