Senior Art Show moves to digital format

Janeth Saenz, Reporter

The art department recently sent out an email announcing the Senior Art show will be displayed in digital format. Seniors who have taken art classes are invited to submit a slideshow with photos of their artwork on or before April 14. The show will be online from May 1 through 20 and will start with an open ceremony and an announcement of a scholarship. Jodee Johnson, art and design teacher, said a video will be posted on YouTube of students’ artwork.

“We need time to get entries, prepare them and create the video and students need time to take photos of the work and submit them,” Johnson said. “We made May 20 the end date because that is the last official day of school, even though the seniors will technically be done before that.”

The department will continue on jurying students’ artwork to reflect on teaching standards. They will not be hosting their regular show located in downtown Wichita to celebrate with a “Final Friday” reception.

“The inability to show the senior artwork in our traditional art show is a big disappointment,” Johnson said. “The gallery where we host the show gets crowded and we have music and food. It feels like a closing celebration of a great group of seniors that spent some time in art, and that is what I will miss most.”

The art department encourages students going into an art-related major to apply for the Joe Pfannenstiel Memorial Scholarship; a $500 cash scholarship. Senior Kaia James is applying for the scholarship and participating in this year’s show. She plans on majoring in french and art while attending K-State University in the fall.

“My ceramics class is what helped me the most in the decision of wanting to do art as a career,” James said. “The teachers are what really make a difference on how your high school career goes and I couldn’t have asked for better ones.”

James is happy that the art department had decided to continue the show but was sad at first when they announced a cancellation. She now looks forward to seeing her fellow classmates’ artwork and encourages other students to participate.

“COVID-19 has definitely been hard for high schoolers, especially seniors,” James said. “I am sad that we have to have the show online, but I am grateful that we can still have one.”

Senior Chloe Eddins has applied for the scholarship and plans on attending Kansas City Art Institute in the fall. Eddins has been looking forward to the Senior Art Show since freshman year and is ready to show her proud work to her friends and family.

“It’s a great way to connect with other artists and to be proud of yourself for all the hard work you’ve put into your art over the years,” she said.

Eddins said she is frustrated by the situation and would prefer the show to be in person but is grateful towards the art department.

“I am thankful for all the hard work the art department and the administration have been doing to make our last few months as normal as possible,” she said. “They truly appreciate the arts and do as much as they can for us.