By Malena Khan
Baltimore Watchdog Staff Writer
Displayed at the Walters Art Museum amongst the Egyptian mummy, ancient Roman sculptures and medieval armor are abstract mixed media pieces, a sharpie drawing of Rihanna, a watercolor painting of an underwater scene, and other artwork from grade school students from Howard County.
Throughout the school year, the Walters Art Museum partners with the Maryland Art Education Association to host exhibitions featuring the artwork of students from different counties in Maryland. Starting Nov. 28, artwork from Howard County students was put on display.
“It’s always really exciting for us to be able to get the student artwork displayed in here,” said Brittany Powell, coordinator of fine arts at the museum on North Charles Street in Baltimore. “It is really special for the students to be able to come into the museum with their parents and family members and see their artwork being displayed next to so many classic pieces.”
School officials said students from throughout Howard County were invited to participate. Students from 74 of the county’s 75 schools took part in the exhibition, said Gino Molfino, coordinator of fine arts for the Howard County Public School System.
This year’s them, which is called Honoring the Process, celebrates and reflects the individual artistic processes of the students. Individual art instructors hand selected art work from students in their classrooms.
“Honoring the Process was this year’s HCPSS exhibition in partnership with the Walters Art Museum,” Molfino said. “The student artwork was juried and selected by individual HCPSS school art teachers. The work was selected based on the core values of the HCPSS visual arts curriculum and the art making process and behaviors, including idea generation, organization and compositional strategies, complexity and elaboration, personal meaning and choice making, risk taking, and perseverance.”
There is a vast variety of pieces on display from students of all ages. The exhibition had everything from crayon drawings created by third graders to photographs taken by seniors in high school.
On Nov. 22 an exhibition reception and award ceremony took place at the art museum in honor of the Howard County Student Art Show. This allowed the participating students and their family members to look at the exhibit. Students were also able to share what they created in class with their loved ones and saw the art pieces by other students in their county.
“The reception and certificate ceremony drew over 65 percent of the student artists, families and teachers,” Molfino said. “Responses from parents and staff were overwhelmingly positive.”