Students’ work to be displayed in State Superintendent’s Visual Arts Exhibit
Published 11:48 am Tuesday, February 2, 2016
By EMILY SPARACINO / Staff Writer
CHELSEA – Chelsea High School art teacher Max Newton seizes the opportunity every year to enter two of his students in the annual Alabama State Superintendent’s Visual Arts Exhibit to showcase their creative talents.
“We do it for them,” Newton said of his students. “I’m proud of them. I like to show them off.”
As Newton contemplated entries for this year’s exhibit, work by CHHS senior Kristen Hamby and sophomore Kaitlyn Avery stood out to him.
Hamby, 17, is representing Shelby County in the 11th and 12th grade division, while Avery, 15, is in the ninth and 10th grade division.
“The superintendent’s show is our county area, and when you win a certain rank, you go to state, which is held in Montgomery,” Hamby explained. “We’re lucky; our school almost always does well with art competitions.”
Hamby and Avery are among 15 Shelby County students with pieces in the exhibit, which will be on public display from Feb. 5-19 in the Old Supreme Court Library of the Alabama State Capitol in Montgomery.
Hamby, a veteran of the superintendent’s exhibit, said she was “excited” when she learned her watercolor painting titled “Self-Portrait” would be in this year’s exhibit.
Avery said she was “honored” to have her linoleum print titled “Vanity” entered in the exhibit.
Both students plan to continue their artistic endeavors after high school.
Avery said she plans to become an art professor or a high school art teacher.
“It’s definitely something I want to go into,” Avery said.
Hamby, who is currently working on her AP portfolio, said she plans to go into video game animation and design.
The exhibit showcases work from students in kindergarten through 12th grade.
A committee of judges considered the work chosen for the exhibit to be exceptional among entries from every Shelby County school.
“I’ve been here 23 years. I’ve had a lot of experience with the show,” Newton said. “It’s a great show.”
Newton said he encourages his students to participate in as many art shows as possible each year.
“I’m proud of the kids,” he added. “They work hard, and they’re just great students. It’s a fabulous job working with fabulous kids.”
The following students in Shelby County also have artwork in the 2016 State Superintendent’s Visual Arts Exhibit:
•Emmalyn Miller, sixth grade, Chelsea Middle School, teacher Katherine Thompson.
•Sydney Harrington, 12th grade, Oak Mountain High School, teacher Nicole McKinney.
•Erin Carlee, 10th grade, Oak Mountain High School, teacher Ashley Lemley.
•Kaitlin Riley, third grade, Oak Mountain Elementary School, teacher Carol Popwell.
•Layla Mims, 12th grade, Vincent High School, teacher J. Paul Williamson.
•Shannon Montgomery, 10th grade, Vincent High School, teacher J. Paul Williamson.
•Jared Dobbs, 12th grade, Vincent High School, teacher J. Paul Williamson.
•Mary Laatsch, 11th grade, Helena High School, teacher Sommer Fortner.
•Katie Coons, 10th grade, Helena High School, teacher Sommer Fortner.
•Ava Clare Baker, second grade, Helena Elementary School, teacher Adam Short.
•Madelyn Guy, seventh grade, Columbiana Middle School, teacher Jessie Tisdale.
•Aliia Ergeshova, 11th grade, Calera High School, teacher Gay Niven.
•Madyson Hjetland, ninth grade, Calera High School, teacher Gay Niven.