The Contemporary Art Center is proud to exhibit the outstanding work of area high schools. Over twenty area high schools are invited to participate each year. Students enrolled in area high schools as well as students of high school age may submit up to two pieces of art along with a $1.00 entry fee and a filled out entry form. Learn all about the details in the prospectus.
This year, 118 students from 6 area high schools (East Peoria High School, Washburn High School, Pekin Community High School, Peoria Notre Dame High School, Richwoods High School and Washington Community High School) submitted 171 pieces. Nearly 120 are exhibited in the gallery.
Each year, a retired high school art teacher serves as the juror and judge, choosing which works will be exhibited as well as designating pieces deserving of special honor with awards of Outstanding Achievement, Honorable Mention and Merit. Besides a ribbon, each award winner receives a scholarship towards an art class at the Contemporary Art Center. Award winners are announced at the Opening Reception on Saturday, April 20, 6:30-8:30pm. The artists, their family, friends and the public is invited to attend this event.
The exhibit is designed to simulate adult juried art exhibits. The work is displayed in Gallery 3R, on the third floor of the Contemporary Art Center. The exhibit is designed to simulate adult juried art exhibits in which artists typically pay fees of $25-60 to submit work that may not be chosen by the juror to be displayed.
The annual exhibit was founded in 2004 by Executive Director William Butler and his former high school teacher Michael Hagenbuch, then newly retired from Limestone Community High School. Hagenbuch served as the first juror/judge and for some years after continued to volunteer in support of the exhibit.
“Michael and I wanted to create a high school exhibit distinct from any other high school exhibit in the area. A ‘real world’ exhibit experience in which the artist has to invest time and money to enter a competition, submitting to a subjective choice by a juror with the risk of not being chosen in the end,” says Butler.