WSCC high school art show to be unveiled on March 11

West shore Community College professor of art Rebbeca Mott positions one of the pieces of art from Onekama High School to be exhibited in the upcoming 15th annual High School Art Show that opens on March 11. (Ken Grabowski/News Advocate)


It is the one word that comes to mind to best describe the works that will be shown in the 15th Annual West Shore Community College High School Art Competition. The show opens on March 11 at the Manierre Dawson Art Gallery in the Arts and Sciences building and is sponsored by the West Shore Community College Foundation and the WSCC Art Department.

Sixty-six students from nine schools in the college district will show 77 works of art in 10 categories. Ribbons will be awarded to first and second place in the categories of jewelry, sculpture, pottery, drawing, painting, printmaking, photography, video, textiles and mixed media. Students participating in the event are from Brethren, Hart, Ludington, Pentwater, Mason County Central, Manistee Catholic Central, Manistee High School, Onekama and Shelby high schools.

“For our area, it is one of the best shows around,” said WSCC professor of art Rebecca Mott. “Some schools have their own, but others in it don’t, so this gives them a chance to be in a show. This year is actually a little smaller in the number of entries and unfortunately that might be because of budget cuts in the schools.”

Mott said the arts are important at the high school level and is an academic outlet like other subjects.

“It helps with creative thinking,” said Mott. “When you think about what employers are looking for, they want people to have creative ability.

“That creativity is something you don’t get in a lot of other classes. Art, music and theater are some of the few areas where you can really be creative.”

The entries they received for the show include a lot of quality pieces of work. She said the focus has changed over the years from a stronger emphasis on painting and sculpture to more digital photography and drawing.

“We have more digital photography and manipulated photographs,” said Mott. “Usually, that has been a real small category where we might have three or four entries, but we have a whole bunch of them this year. I think that is going to be a difficult area to judge this year. Drawing has a lot of entries and mixed media does as well. But there doesn’t seem to be a lot of straight painting and not that much sculpture like in the past.”

Students can take two-dimensional work to the A.M. Gallery in Ludington to get matted with the cost covered by the WSCC Foundation.

“That gives it a professional look,” said Mott. “They then get to keep them after the show.”

Mott said the option of having the Manierre Dawson Art Gallery gives many of the students the opportunity to have their work shown off in a first class venue.

“A lot of the students from high schools take classes here (dual enrollment) and they get the chance to see it and others can come out during the show to see their friends’ artwork,” said Mott.

All the schools in Manistee County except for Bear Lake will have students showing their works.

Manistee High School art teacher Monte Klein has submitted the works of Jonathan Bailey, Victoria Frechette, Kyle Husk, Savannah Kolk, Kristen Loeffler, Petra Probst, Brianna Wallace, Rebecca Barry, Daniela Parazzi and Amber Breusch.

Onekama High School and teacher Dana Woolman will have the works of Kelly Koon, Emily Barnard, Lena Beir, Diego Ponce, Claire Harvey and Alex Barto on display.

Manistee Catholic Central teacher Mary Wahr will the works of Jared Hanson, Blake Vargas, Maria Sidor, Haley Doyle, Hannah Janicki, Robert Russo, Aaron Shively and Alyssa Campbell.

Brethren teacher Amanda Mobley will show the works of Ailie Summers, Kaelee Jacobs, Siarra Lopez, Chole Dudek, Josie Judnic, Olivia Arlt, Haley Wade, Rylee Fleming, Dakota McLeod and Chelsea Stewart.

Brenda Sipe will be serving as the juror of this event and she is a Grand Rapids artist and the director of youth and adults continuing studies program for Kendall College.

“She just had a show here at the college,” said Mott. “I thought it is nice to have a juror from out of the area who doesn’t have any ties to the community or the schools. With her being at the college, it made it easy to jury this show.”

The show will run until March 23 and on March 17 from 2 to 3:30 p.m. there will be a reception for the artists when awards will be presented for the various categories. Gallery hours during the show will be from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday and Friday from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m.





Posted by Ken Grabowski

Ken is News Advocate’s education reporter. He coordinates coverage for all Manistee County schools and West Shore Community College. He can be reached by phone at (231) 398-3125 or by email at

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