GREENVILLE — For the next three weeks, the Greenville High School lobby will be transformed from a school hallway into an art gallery.
With more than 300 pieces of art, ranging from ceramic and clay figures to pastels and drawings, the room is filled with artwork by Greenville students in kindergarten through the 12th grade.
“It is to showcase our students and how talented they are,” said high school art teacher Sonja Peterson.
In its sixth year, the Greenville Art Exhibit is on display now until May 15. Tuesday marked the kick-off of the event as students took their parents by hand, guiding them from display to display, finally locating their own piece of art.
“You can see it on their faces, it’s big for the kids,” said middle school teacher September Buys. “It’s nice to be recognized for their efforts and skills.”
“They get to see (their work) in a different light,” said middle school art teacher Kelly Junis. “When you put it in a frame, in lighting or up on a wall, it’s different. It means a lot to them.”
And the students look forward to the exhibit, the teachers say. It shows throughout the year in the quality of their projects.
The students making work they know will get recognized encourages them,” Buys said. “Some will go back and touch up their pieces.”
And there is more than just the creative juices flowing as they work diligently at designing their artwork at every level.
“There’s actually idea making and cognitive skills at work,” Buys said.
“In elementary, it’s all about imagination,” said Frances Hull, an art teacher at Cedar Crest Elementary School.
The exhibit itself is for that imagination to be put on display, for parents, students and the public. The exhibit is open to anyone whenever the high school building is open.
The exhibit is also for students to see the artwork of their peers, whether in the grade ahead or from students much older. It’s also a chance for teachers to see how artwork evolves from kindergarten to 12th grade.
“Kids get to see the other kids’ work,” Buys said. “A whole lot happens in 12 years and it really shows.”
During Tuesday’s opening day, parents, grandparents and friends filled the high school’s lobby, taking close glances at the art pieces.
Voting is underway for best artwork.
After six years, organizers said turnout was improving each year, with around 100 people going through the doors Tuesday.
“Every year we get more and more,” Peterson said.