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Student artists grow with broad community support

March is Youth Art Month and a fitting time to draw attention to the talented young artists we have in Red Wing. Our artists are not only excelling in their classes, but contributing, through art, to their community as well.

At Red Wing High School, we've had students volunteering at youth classes at ArtReach and creating artwork for various businesses and organizations, including the Power of the Purse event. Our students are proud to share their time and talents with their neighbors and realize how important the arts are to building community.

On March 2, Red Wing Arts Association hosted a gallery opening for the Area School Student Art Show, which is exhibited in the Marjorie Gray Vogel Gallery during March.

This is always a wonderful day for the local student artists whose work has been selected to hang in this show.

It's an opportunity for recognition for hard work and creativity. It's a chance to share a piece of themselves. The work on display is quite inspiring and gives amazing insight into the minds of our youth and therefor, a peek at our future.

Stop down to the Depot to check out this artwork. If you have children, grandchildren or young friends, take them along and enjoy the opportunity to ask some questions and have some fun art-related discussions. It's important for children to see the connection between arts in the schools and arts at home.

Red Wing is also home to a supportive community of artists and as an art educator I appreciate the collaborations we've been able to benefit from in the schools.

Red Wing High School student artists participate annually in the Sister City Young Artists Showcase, offering them an amazing opportunity to create, display and compete with their original artworks. Our new Media Arts class is benefiting from a working relationship with the Red Wing Photography Club, whose members lead workshops and lessons. This year the Red Wing Shoe Co. will send a designer to work with students in designing potential new logos for the Red Wing Booster Club.

Along with these groups, we also work closely with ArtReach, the Red Wing Arts Association and various local artists who volunteer their time to work with our program. The arts are an integral part of a child's education, and our community is doing an awesome job of working together to show that we value this for our children.

"When we teach a child to sing or play the flute, we teach her how to listen.

"When we teach her to draw, we teach her to see.

"When we teach a child to dance, we teach him about his body and about space, and when he acts on stage, he learns about character and motivation.

"When we teach a child design, we reveal the geometry of the world.

"When we teach children about the folk and traditional arts and the great masterpieces of the world, we teach them to celebrate their roots and find their own place in history." -- Jane Alexander

Kristin Bray teaches at Red Wing High School.