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‘Rising Stars’ shine at Youth in Arts Gallery

Gold Armor in entry of gallery (Elsa Sherman)

From Feb. 10 through April 12, Youth in Arts held the 33rd Annual Marin County High School Art Show, known as Rising Stars. The exhibition featured over 130 art pieces created by high school students from around Marin, many of whom are from Redwood. On Feb. 10, a reception was held for many artistic and eager students from 14 different high schools to be recognized with awards and prizes. At Redwood, Eleanor Lawson, Maggie Kelly, Dila Koksal and Keila Washburn all won awards.

Youth in Arts is an educational nonprofit arts organization that brings art programming to elementary schools in the San Rafael City School District. The organization is 53-years-old and has served Redwood High School students through Rising Stars for many years. Rising Stars is an art show created for high school students to help promote art in their community. Participating schools are invited to nominate 12 students to the event, and have been for 33 years.

Awards range from Best in Show, Drawing, Mixed Media and Sculpture to the Graver/Kaplan and Riley Street Prize. Honorable Mentions are also a possible award. Submitting students are eligible to receive one prize per person.

Morgan Schauffler is the organizer of Rising Stars and Director of External Affairs at Youth in Arts. She worked in fine arts at the Paul Thiebaud Gallery in San Francisco for ten years before joining Youth in Arts, later organizing Rising Stars in 2016. Schauffler encourages students to take part in the gallery.

“It’s a wonderful program. The quality of the work is just outstanding. I’m always so impressed with the honesty, the vulnerability and the thoughtfulness that goes into the artist’s statements,” Schuaffler said.

Senior Eleanor Lawson sent in one of her pieces after being encouraged and nominated by her art teacher Susanne Maxwell. She won the Best Mixed Media award for her piece, Klimt Sirens, which entailed a semester of free tuition at the College of Marin and a $75 Visa gift card.

Eleanor Lawson’s award-winning piece, Klimt Sirens (Elsa Sherman)

“The experience helped me understand how to reach out to people and how to put my art out there. It was cool to see a professional nonprofit art organization, and how they curated their gallery,” Lawson said.

Rising Stars awards over $1,000 in prizes and many scholarships for young artists. The program is a great opportunity for students to get a taste of the art world, and see if they want to pursue art later in their lives.

“If you put your full effort into your work and exert your passion as much as possible, opportunities like this will find you,” Lawson said.


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About the Contributor
Elsa Sherman is a sophomore at Redwood High School and a copy editor for the Cub. She enjoys reading and listening to music in her spare time.