StArt exhibit at the Osilas Gallery showcases student artwork

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Students, families, and locals of Westchester gather to observe the work of talented artists at the StArt exhibit. Christina Weiler ’17

The artwork of students from 30 different high schools in the tri-state area creates a colorful climate in the Osilas Gallery at

Students and families enjoy the StArt exhibit reception and award ceremony January 6. Christina Weiler '17
Students and families enjoy the StArt exhibit reception and award ceremony January 6. Christina Weiler ’17

Concordia College in Bronxville, New York. The Heart of Neiman Marcus Foundation sponsors the eleventh annual StArt exhibit, which runs from January 6 to January 17.
Each winter for the past 11 years, managers of the Osilas Gallery have reached out to over 160 schools to recruit artists for the exhibit. Schools respond and submit student artwork, and the gallery selects art from the top five artists to display. The main intention of the StArt program is to recognize talented students in the area, connect them with each other, and connect them with other artists.
From floor to ceiling, the gallery walls are covered in original artwork. Plain white walls lay in stark contrast to vibrant canvases and three-dimensional sculptures in the exhibit. There is a vast variety of mediums ranging from metal jewelry to mixed media collages and traditional oil paint on canvas.
Eastchester High School Senior Peter Winkleman creates a bracelet in metal working class. Christina Weiler '17
Eastchester High School Senior Peter Winkleman created a bracelet in metal working class. Christina Weiler ’17

 
“We strive to create a greater community awareness of the arts. We want students to continue their artistic passions beyond high school, rather than dropping the activity when they go off to college,” Osilas Gallery Manager Ms. Claudia Kissel said.
Eastchester High School senior Peter Winkleman is one of the artists the gallery selected. Now on display in the exhibit, Peter’s metal bracelet possesses intricate details which he perfected in metal working class.
“I’ve been interested in building things with cardboard and other materials for the past few years. So, when I came across a cool design in a book I was reading, I thought it would be interesting to make it into a bracelet,” Peter said.
The artists practiced different techniques in order to create their individual works. Some students captured thematic elements from social issues, while others focus on personal moments or striking works of literature and art.
Senior at Briarcliff High School __ observes her painting "Red Hot" at the StArt exhibit reception. Christina Weiler '17
Senior at Briarcliff High School Devon Litchfield observes her painting “Red Hot” at the StArt exhibit reception. Christina Weiler ’17

Briarcliff High School senior Devon Litchfield described a specific artistic process she uses to relax. When she arrives home from school, she composes a still life, sets it up on her floor, and paints until she feels satisfied with her piece. Music and light permeate through Devon’s work space to help her stay focused on capturing minute details.
Entitled “Red Hot,” her exhibited painting is a vivid depiction of several Tabasco sauce bottles.
“In this piece, I create a satire on America’s obsession with junk food. In one of my other portfolio pieces, I painted a donut and emphasized the greasiness,” Devon said.
Other student-artists, like Clarkstown High School North sophomore Melanie Gatchalian, hope to transform their budding interest into a career path.
“I am inspired by my older cousin who works in the movie business,” Melanie said.
Tailored to her ambition, Melanie’s piece reflects a level of skill beyond the high-school level. She created a self-portrait using a subtractive method by coating her paper in black charcoal and gradually erasing layers to form depth, value, and detail.
Bronxville High School sophomore Lauren Lee greets family and friends beside her Trompe L'oeil piece. Christina Weiler '17
Bronxville High School sophomore Lauren Lee greets family and friends beside her Trompe L’oeil piece. Christina Weiler ’17

Yet, not all exhibited artists possess this level of experience. Some artists, like Bronxville High School sophomore Lauren Lee, are relatively new to art. Lauren began taking art classes as a freshman, and the first time she ever used colored pencil was to create her Trompe L’oil piece, which she chose to exhibit in StArt.
“I think that drawing itself, without a specific meaning, is not fulfilling. Having a story behind artwork makes it so much more meaningful,” Lauren said. “The intention of our assignment in art class was to represent the story of the individual artist.”
The Osilas Gallery normally hosts six to ten exhibits per year, other than StArt . Exhibits normally last between a couple of weeks to several of months. Locals of Westchester, students of Concordia College, and art enthusiasts in the area pay no cost to tour the gallery, which sits above the Concordia College Library.
-Christina Weiler, Arts and Entertainment Editor