YAKIMA, Wash. – For the first time in more than two years since the pandemic hit, Yakima student artists have the chance to showcase their work at an in-person art gallery.
The walls of AC Davis High School’s KIVA are lined with hundreds of pieces made by high school art students, creating a pop-up art gallery with an opening reception scheduled for 6:30-8:30 p.m. Tuesday.
“We want everyone to see what these children are doing,” said Carole Huls, drawing and painting teacher.
Huls said several students in his art classes have already created award-winning works of art and been noticed regionally, stately and nationally.
However, she said the gallery is an opportunity for all students to showcase work that is important to them. Some will work on this art live at the opening reception.
“I always tell them, ‘I need three things from you: effort, an attitude that you can do it, and persistence,'” Huls said. “If you have these three things, you will be successful in art because art is an acquired skill, but you will also be successful in life.”
Isabelle Ehlis: “I never really realized how much my art could impact others.
Student and high school artist Isabelle Ehlis recently won first place this year in the annual statewide competition for the Superintendent’s High School Art Show with her self-portrait, Botanical refuge.
“I wanted to kind of represent one of the most important aspects of my life in helping me through COVID, which was my backyard,” Ehlis said.
Ehlis said she and her family have turned to gardening to cope with isolation and negativity during the pandemic.
Additionally, she said the recognition she received was amazing and helped solidify her passion for creating.
“Until recently, I never really realized how much of an impact my art could have on others,” Ehlis said. “I never really realized it was even something worth acknowledging.”
Bella Levene: “We probably need more diversity.”
High school student, artist and aspiring fashion designer Bella Levene has been making strides with her own jewelry business called Real Universe X.
Levene presents some of this jewelry to the gallery, along with her artwork, much of which shows her passion for black culture.
“In Yakima, in particular, there’s not a lot of black art,” Levene said. “It’s mostly Latin art or like Spanish art around Yakima, which is beautiful of course, but I think we probably need more diversity.”
READ: AC Davis High School students take top 4 spots in Congressional Art Contest
Morgan Greene: “It’s so humiliating and it’s kind of not real right now.”
Inspired by her Native American heritage, student artist Morgan Greene uses her art as a platform to raise awareness for the missing and murdered Native women movement.
“There is a disproportionate amount of violence inflicted on Indigenous women, even though they are a very small part of the population,” Greene said.
his piece, Silentwon the 2022 Congressional Art Contest for Center Washington and will hang on the wall of the United States Capitol building in Washington, DC next year.
“It’s so humiliating and it’s kind of not real right now,” Greene said.
The AC Davis High School KIVA Gallery will be open from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on Tuesdays. Parents, peers and community members can drop by during the school day – 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. – for the rest of the week to view the exhibits.
“Come see it,” Huls said. “You will be amazed at what these kids can do.”
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