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Student Art and Design Exhibition 2024 at Giertz Gallery
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Student Art and Design Exhibition 2024 at Giertz Gallery

56th Annual Art and Design Juried Student Exhibition at Giertz Gallery April 8 to May 4

Parkland College's "56th Annual Art and Design Juried Student Exhibition" will be held in the Giertz Gallery from April 8 through May 4.
Audiences will enjoy this impressive body of student work, which includes photography, painting, drawing, figure drawing, metals, three-dimensional design, two-dimensional design, color theory, graphic design, and ceramics. Parkland Art and Design faculty will select approximately 180 works from 350+ entries for this year's exhibit. Students taking art classes in the current academic year, beginning with summer 2023, submitted artwork.
 
The opening reception on Thursday, April 11, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the gallery lounge will include an awards ceremony at 6:15 p.m. DJ Silkee will provide music for the reception.
 
Art faculty member Joan Stolz, who will retire after the spring semester, looks forward to this event each spring. Stolz says, "The Annual Art and Design Student Exhibition is my favorite event of the year. It's always great to see what the students and other instructors are doing in classes other than my own. And it's generally the first time our students put their work up for public display.
 
"Before I started teaching at Parkland, I attended the Student Exhibit and was so impressed by the talent and breadth of the work. I continue to be impressed by our talented, motivated students here at Parkland. I've often thought that our mix of students—all different backgrounds and age ranges—has added to the dynamic of creating excellent work."
 
According to Gallery Director Lisa Costello, students planning on a profession in the arts begin their career path at Parkland College, and this exhibition allows them to showcase their extensive talent and the exploration processes they have experienced throughout their studies in art and design.

"It introduces them to professional practices they will encounter in their field, such as working with a gallery, preparing their work for exhibition, and engaging in the jurying process—all essential for an emerging artist," Costello added. "This is necessary for resume building and establishing themselves as practicing artists once they graduate in their career program or transfer to a four-year college."
 
During the April 11 reception, an awards ceremony at 6:15 p.m. will recognize students whose artwork shows remarkable distinction, with announcements made for merit awards, purchase awards, monetary award certificates, and scholarship recipients. Monetary awards include the Parkland President Award; the David M. and Shirley A. Jones Student Art Award; the Metals Award for Jewelry/Metalsmithing; the Arts, Media, and Social Sciences Chair Award; the Parkland Art and Design Faculty Award; and the Blair Kling Memorial Art Award. In addition to these awards will be the Art Coop Award for Sustained Studio Excellence, providing funds to purchase art materials at the locally owned art supply store; the Chris Berti Award for Excellence in Ceramics; and the Melissa's Gift Comrades in Art Award, provided by the local artist group in memory of former Parkland art student Melissa Lynch. This year, an additional Melissa's Gift Award in memory of alumna Jenny Barret will be awarded. Parkland Art and Design scholarships include the Don Lake Art Scholarship, the Underwood-Alger Scholarship, and the Robert Ralph Ford Memorial Art Scholarship.
 
Merit awardees, certificate winners, and scholarship recipients retain possession of their work, while purchase awards become part of the Parkland College Student Art Collection.
 
In addition to the reception and award festivities, Giertz Gallery will highlight the exhibition by participating in the Boneyard Arts Festival. The festival events are in Champaign-Urbana from April 11 through April 14. "It is great to be a part of the festival, a county-wide celebration that 40 North, the Champaign County Arts Council, organizes yearly," Costello said. "Many of our alumni participate in the Boneyard Arts Festival, and it's terrific that Giertz Gallery can bring attention to our student's success and their artwork at Parkland." Giertz Gallery will have extended hours for the festival on Saturday, April 13, from noon to 4 p.m., and will include an artist's "meet and greet" with light refreshments served from 2 to 4 p.m.
 
Spring gallery hours are Monday through Wednesday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and Saturday, noon to 2 p.m.
 
Due to construction, it is recommended that visitors use the B7 parking lot on the south end of campus. Enter through Door X2 and turn left, then take the uphill ramp on the right, east of the library stairs. From there, take the two ramps north of the stairs to reach the gallery.
 
A grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, partially supports programs at the gallery. All events in the gallery are free and open to the public. Parkland College is a Section 504/ADA-compliant institution. For accommodation, call 217/353-2338 or email accessibilityservices@parkland.edu.
 
For more information on the exhibit, please call the gallery office at 217/351-2485 or visit parkland.edu/gallery.  
 
[image: Julie McCleery, Textured Hearing, 6 x 6 inches, oil on panel, 2023]

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