Student artworks on display at Museum of Surrey until Feb. 18

The Bathroom by Leng Bombase, Grade 11.
Shoebill Stork by Lorie Balthes, Grade 9.
Great Horned Owl by Teagan Chow, Grade 9.

Surrey high school artists are front and centre at the Museum of Surrey.

Students from 12 Surrey secondary schools contributed their artworks to a new show called the “Secondary Visual Arts Exhibition.”

Nearly 50 artists from grades 8-12 contributed drawings, paintings, collages, photographs, and prints for the show.

Jane Silversides, a Surrey Schools fine arts teacher, said exhibition-goers will be able to see the learning process that lies behind the students’ finished works.

Marc Pelech, an art teacher at Sullivan Heights, said he taught his students to explore creativity in art through “purposeful play” as they worked on their pieces for this exhibition.

He said his students used India ink in their works because of the unpredictability and permanency of its properties.

“The students need to make constant adaptations to their pieces,” he said. “By working around unintended mistakes, they became more flexible in their decision-making skills.”

One such work using India ink, Shoebill Stork by 14-year-old Lorie Balthes, “shows remarkable maturity in terms of realism and nuanced expression,” added Pelech.

“I discovered that I could produce a realistic drawing using unorthodox objects instead of more conventional tools like a pencil, calligraphy pen, or paintbrush,” said Balthes.

Pelech said 14-year-old Teagan Chow’s Great Horned Owl captures the ferociousness of the creature.

“Her black-and-white drawing was fashioned from common objects like a screw, Velcro, toothbrush, and pipe cleaner that were dipped in India ink and meticulously layered to build up the rich surface.”

Another piece in the show, The Bathroom, by 16-year-old Leng Bombase, is a mixed media work.

“Being resilient is the implied message of this artwork,” said Bombase. “I live in a house with eight people, so the bathroom is the only private space with a lock on the door.”

Bombase said she attempts to portray “faded and solid versions of myself within this confined space to communicate how I gather and recalibrate my thoughts before heading back out into the world.”

Christina Farrant, a Sullivan Heights art teacher, said she asked her students to base their artworks on the theme: reconstructed deconstruction.

“My students were required to select elements from their earlier process artworks and create a new, mixed-media composition,” she said.

Students from Clayton Heights, Elgin Park, Enver Creek, Fleetwood Park, Frank Hurt, Fraser Heights, Guildford Park, Johnston Heights, Kwantlen Park, L.A. Matheson, Salish, and Sullivan Heights contributed artworks for the show.

The exhibition runs at the Museum of Surrey until Feb. 18. The museum is located at 17710 56A Ave.



editor@cloverdalereporter.com

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