When Tahlequah High School art teacher Anthony Amason was in graduate school at Northeastern State University, he had an idea to provide students a way of participating in a professional art show.
Amason collaborated with NSU Educational Foundation Leadership Dr. Renee Cambiano and Associate Art Professor Lance Hunter to secure a location and judges, and the April 26 THS Senior Art Show marked the fourth year Amason’s students have gotten a taste of what it would be like to have their work critiqued by professional artists. Hunter and professional artist Sylvia Nitti were the judges.
Senior Jobe Wells won Best in Show for his welded metal sculpture, “Samurai,” while senior Ian McAlpin won First in Best in Show, or second, for his charcoal and graphite drawing, “Glass.” The THS students received cash awards at a reception on the NSU campus.
Wells said his forté is sculpting metal materials through a welding process conducted outside of school on his own time. His winning piece, “Samurai,” is life-like in size and shape, he said.
“It’s as tall as me. It actually stands at 6 [feet and] 5 [inches tall],” he said. “It’s a Samurai with his sword. I love metal.”
Wells also had a second sculpture place to earn his $200 award at the senior art show. He tends to sculpt life-like or produce subjects that present actual shape and size.
“I do more of, I guess, a realistic [style],” said Wells. “I did make a dragon, and that’s not very realistic. But it’s also not abstract.”
McAlpin received $75 for his image of what he described as an emaciated figure with its hand pressed against glass. He has a strong familiarity with the pencil medium and opted to use charcoal, or carbon, and graphite to produce the drawing.
“I’m the most comfortable with it because I’ve been using it the longest, but lately I’ve been doing a lot of painting,” said McAlpin. “I like to use surrealistic art mostly. So [I’ve been painting] sort of abstract [stuff].”
The subject of “Glass” came from past sketches.
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