“Proud” was one of the most common words overheard at the Young at Art exhibit at the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art (MMoCA), where student artists presented their creations on display throughout the gallery.
The collaboration between the MMSD Fine Arts Department and MMoCA invites MMSD art teachers to submit works of student art; a wide array of techniques, subject matter, and mediums are represented, including drawing, painting, photography, collage, sculpture, jewelry, ceramics, fiber, found objects, and multi-media art.
Sriniketh Prashanna Shankar, a third grade scholar at John Muir Elementary, held his dad’s hand as he walked him through the crowds to the spot on the wall where his professionally framed painting hung. Sriniketh’s little brother gazed up, pointing to the orange, red, and blue colors of the scenic ocean sunset created with tempera paint and oil pastels.
“I had a lot of fun making it in Ms. Wilson’s art class,” Sriniketh said. “My favorite part of being here is feeling proud, and showing my family the sunset art.”
Sriniketh’s mom echoed his excitement and pride, as did his art teacher at Muir Elementary, Amy Wilson.
“I feel really proud, really joyous. It’s a really warm feeling seeing so many students here with their families and teachers. I think this show can have a really powerful impact,” Wilson said. “I call them ‘smartest artists’ every day, and then to see their work in the museum and know they can share their work with the world I think is really powerful.”
Across the wall from fourth grade Leopold student Julia Peacock’s colorful painting, an homage to famous painter Alma Thomas, stood several glass display cases. Encased were multimedia collages, ceramic sculptures and mugs, jewelry and more.
The very first metalworking piece Jolie Schrage ever made was in one of the cases, a beetle with movable wings and legs composed of silver, nickel, and brass. The La Follette High School senior said her art teacher, Monique Karlen, was immediately supportive of the project.
“It’s really exciting to have my art here. It’s always nice when people compliment your art, but seeing it somewhere like this, you know they’re not just lying to make you feel better,” Schrage laughed.
While artists and art appreciators meandered through the exhibit, smooth tunes echoed through the gallery as members from the East High School Jazz Band performed during the reception. The Young at Art exhibit is free and open to the public through Aug. 6.