Over 30 people braved the stormy weather on Friday evening to attend the Marion Art Center’s opening. Featured artists Joan Dromey and Cecilia Murray were in attendance to meet and greet admiring patrons. 37 pastel paintings were on display with titles such as “Serenity” and “Autumn Sentinels.” The beautifully framed paintings depicted marshes, harbors, horizons, sunrises, sunsets and the four seasons. Other paintings of the artists can be seen in the windows of the Marion General Store.
Upstairs in the Cecil Clark Davis Gallery, works of art by the children of Sippican Elementary School from kindergarten through sixth grade were on display.
“This is really great,” said Dennis Maxey, from Mattapoisett. “Everyone needs a picture of a blue dog with a yellow hat.”
Attendees enjoyed the variety of styles and the vibrant colors. Pottery consisting of coffee mugs, plates and animals sat on the piano top. “I want to buy one of these pottery pieces,” said Alice Shire. “I wonder if the student would sell it to me.” Patrons smiled at the whimsy of many of the pieces and several said they wished the pieces were for sale to encourage young artists.
Exhibiting student work at the MAC has been a goal for Erin Kirk, who teaches art at Sippican School. This was the second year that the MAC has exhibited the students’ work. The pieces included drawings, paintings, collages and clay works. Media included oil, pastels, crayons, watercolors, tempera, collage paper and clay. Instead of framing the art, each piece is mounted on black paper to keep the focus on the artwork rather than the frame.
With over 400 students at the school, and limited gallery space, Ms. Kirk determined that three pieces would come from each classroom, with the children in each class choosing the three pieces.
“In looking at these creations, you can see the inspiration of the teachers behind these students … the work is excellent,” said Thomas Shire.
Shire added that he volunteers at the school during the lunch hour in the cafeteria. “I visit the school and ask the students a history question and if they get it right, I give them a prize … a pencil,” said Shire.
Deb Bokelkamp, Executive Director of the Marion Art Center, is thrilled to host the student’s exhibition. “We support art education … that’s what we’re all about. We hope that some of these students will be inspired and strive to someday exhibit their work here as an adult artist,” said Bokelkamp.
The show runs through April 20. The Marion Art Center is located at 80 Pleasant Street in Marion. Admission is free. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Friday, 1:00 to 5:00 pm.
By Joan Hartnett-Barry