The Fine Arts Gallery at Montgomery County Community College’s West Campus in Pottstown will soon be bustling with visitors taking in the dozens of artworks from high schools participating in the Sixth Annual Tri-County High School Art Exhibition and Competition.
High school students in Montgomery, Chester and Berks counties participate in the exhibition, which opens Feb. 19. Galleries Director Patrick Rodgers said the show draws students from as far west as Reading and as far south as Unionville.
Each high school can submit up to 10 works in any medium, except digital. The show’s juror— painter, author, and instructor Leslie Ehrin–will select approximately 12 pieces for special recognition and prizes. The Pottstown Area Artist’s Guild will be offering a Best in Show cash prize, a first for the Tri-County exhibit, according to Rodgers.
MCCC alumnus Frank Genuardi said he was amazed when he saw the high school art show.
“The work is just mind blowing,” said Genuardi, who will offer remarks at the opening reception on Feb. 19. “The high school show serves as a major motivator … to get (college students) to work harder and to see what people who are younger are coming up with.”
Genuardi, who is finishing his final semester at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, credits the College with igniting his passion for art.
“I never had any art classes in high school,” he said. “Everything I know about art comes from Montco. I would not be where I am if it wasn’t for the teachers and how advanced their classes are.”
The sixth annual art exhibition will feature submissions from approximately 15 tri-county high schools, including Upper Merion High School, a participant since the show began in 2014.
Upper Merion art teacher Troy Burkhart said the most challenging task is selecting the top 10 pieces. Teachers look for “excellent craftsmanship” and the students’ ability to show evidence of design.
“We select work to represent Upper Merion based on the subject, the media that’s used,” Burkhart said. “We want to have a wide range of work.”
For seniors, having art pieces included in the show is quite an achievement and one that helps with college applications and potential scholarships, Burkhart said.
“At a high school level, not a lot of students have an opportunity to have their work exhibited,” Burkhart said. “To be part of an exhibition and come to a reception and get to see how some of the other students are designing works that express what they want to express is a great opportunity for kids.”
When You Go
The Sixth Annual Tri-County High School Art Exhibition and Competition will be held Feb. 19 through March 23 at Montgomery County Community College’s Fine Arts Gallery, North Hall, 16 East High St., in Pottstown. An opening reception will be held on Feb. 19 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. with an awards ceremony beginning at 5:45 p.m. To RSVP to the reception or for additional gallery information contact Patrick Rodgers, Galleries Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-619-7349.
Image: “Scissors,” oil on canvas by Emilee Grob, Methacton High School, 2017.
About Montgomery County Community College
For more than 50 years, Montgomery County Community College has grown with the community to meet the evolving educational needs of Montgomery County. The College’s comprehensive curriculum includes more than 100 associate degree and certificate programs, as well as customized workforce training and certifications. Students enjoy the flexibility of learning at the College’s thriving campuses in Blue Bell and Pottstown, at the Culinary Arts Institute in Lansdale, and online through a robust Virtual Campus.
As an Achieving the Dream Leader College, the institution is positioned at the vanguard of national efforts to increase completion, improve learning outcomes, and remove barriers to access for students. The College also is recognized regionally and nationally for its sustainability leadership, work with military veterans, community service and service learning opportunities, and use of classroom technology. For more information, visit http://www.mc3.edu.