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Whitman Displays Student Art

Even though she wasn’t in an art class this year, Whitman Student Viki Economides had a few pieces in her school’s annual show. Economides sees art as a sort of escape. “It kind of offsets the stress from all of the academics,” she said. “I’ve taken an art class every year, except this year, and it was the most depressing year, ever.”

This year’s festival marks the 41st annual Festival of the Arts, showcasing the work of students and faculty. The two-day event has become an event which many in the school community look forward to. In addition to the visual arts, there are musical and dramatic performances, and a fashion show. “It is the culminating activity for each child,” said Jane Diamond, the faculty festival chair. “This is one time when kids get to shine.”

Works are displayed from students in each grade, and they showcase a variety of techniques and degrees of refinement. “We give them a strong foundation, but we try to encourage their own exploration,” said Rob Burgess, art teacher.

Both faculty members think that the volume and quality of the work can be attributed, in part, to the community’s commitment to art.

“I think it’s an understanding of the value of the arts,” Burgess said.

Economides, who plans to take an art class next year, is amazed by the caliber of the work that she and her classmates produce. “We’re only 16 or 17 years old. It’s crazy what we’ve been able to do,” she said.