Blue and Gold Gallery 2018

Work created by the ceramics class. Photo by Julie Yu.

The 19th annual Blue and Gold Art Gallery’s opening night was on April 5th 2018, from 6-8 PM. It is currently open at Commerce Place, 350 Main Street in Malden, where the artwork will remain on display until May 17th 2018. Until then, the gallery is open to the public Monday through Friday from 8AM to 6PM and on Saturdays from 9AM to 12PM. 

The gallery features artwork from freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors. The art teachers like to include artwork from all classes, advanced classes and entry level classes because, according to art teacher Joseph Luongo, the purpose of the art gallery “is to showcase the artwork of the high school students, [and they] like to show a good representation, usually the best work from seniors, juniors, sophomores, [and some freshmen]”. Art and ceramics teacher, Julie Mullane said that they prioritized seniors’ artwork “because it is their last chance, but [they don’t] want the entire show to be seniors”.

Self-portraits exhibited at the gallery. Photo by Julie Yu.

Between all the art classes offered at Malden High, there are about 500 art students and each year the art department picks approximately 200-250 pieces to hang up. The number of pieces they can include in the gallery is based off of the size of the pieces of artwork, since they are given a limited amount of space. With a higher number of students, the art teachers are already limited as to what they choose to hang up and they want to choose artwork that shows that the artist is working hard to master certain techniques.

Mary Ann Seager also mentioned that in previous years the gallery has been “a senior-only show”, but over the years, the show has expanded those limitations to showcase everyone’s talents. She explains that she likes to fairly represent the grades, and, while juniors and seniors create beautiful artwork, it’s important to her that they display any kind of talent without restriction.

On the opening night the three art teachers from Malden High were present and greeting visitors, students, and parents. Small snacks and light refreshments were available to all guests.

Mayor Gary Christenson was also present at the event. Christenson said that the art gallery “allows students to gain confidence, explore their abilities and realize their potential”. He explained that it “gives them the opportunity to share their creative talents with the community”. Christenson also mentioned that he thinks of “art as a universal language that serves as a way for people of all cultures and backgrounds to connect”.

More featured works. Photo by Julie Yu.

At the door, students from the Fine Arts Club passed out pamphlets, including a gallery guide with each student’s name, the technique used in their piece, and the title of their artwork. On the very first page of the pamphlet were the winning pieces of the “Scholastic Art & Writing Awards 2018”. Off to the side there was a small blurb explaining what the contest was and how the winners were chosen. The last page displayed a watercolor piece done by My Huang and “thank you”s to the house principals, the art teachers, and more.

Freshman Kathleen Hoang stated that her and her twin sister, freshman Karen Hoang, have “been interested in art since [they] were 4 or 5 years, which was when [they] started drawing”. Kathleen Hoang had 2 pieces in the gallery, one being a self portrait, which was an abstract piece using watercolor techniques, and the other being a drawing of a girl who suddenly sees her reflection coming to attack her, created using cross hatching techniques done with pen and ink.

Junior, Sammy Lee had an astonishing eight pieces of artwork in this year’s show. His pieces didn’t specialize in one style or technique, though. He had some pieces that utilized styles like acrylic, watercolor, graphite, and more. Lee explained that as “a kid [he] thought drawing was a way to express [himself]”, and since then, he’s enjoyed art. He also mentioned that he thinks “ideas are passed on more easily by visualizing the image”, which led him to want to express himself through art as he grew up.

The 19th annual Blue and Gold art gallery was a success. Seager mentioned that “this year, early Easter, snow days, and MCAS all collided together to shorten [their] preparation time”, but the gallery was finished in time, and the artwork looked beautiful.

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