I considered this walking an art labyrinth, touring the rows and rows of youth art exhibits. I was happy to make the walk of art set up on top of shelves in the children library section, for many adults and children shared the walk with my companion and I. All of them had ballots in hand, looking closely at clearly labeled paintings, drawings, photographs and sculptures. I was happy to make the walk since last year a few rows of shelves sufficed to hold the entries. I am pretty certain we exhibited art on at least fourteen sets of shelves this year, a dramatic increase. Many of the exhibits had a proud label on the back: Careerline Tech Center.
There's no question Grand Haven has an owl population in increase for many students painted or even sculpted the wise bird of the night. Even Meghan Hindenach, a mature talent who works in woodcuts, displayed block prints from her series for young children, celebrating the wordless adventures of Owley, an Umbrella and a Stormy King. Hindenach astounded us with her collection of almost sixty meticulous woodcuts on view, each one required to print one copy of her book for children.
Hindenach's book has no words. The adult telling the story to children provides the narrative, and the simple images capture the children's attention the way Blue's Clues deliberate narrative enraptured children. Mark my words. Hindenach's woodcuts for the Windy Animals will be embedded in the woodwork of a children's library as classic as the Hackley Public Library up in Muskegon. The accomplishment matches that of Pewabic Tile characters for children library rooms.
We learned much about the way young children think and how adults can tell more than "twice-told" stories to children from Hindenach's posters. One young sculptor made me think about the plight of owls who encounter mice poisoned by household baits. Before then, I thought that mice exterminated this way had little impact upon bird populations. The sculptor had a poignant and yet humorous take on the owl's plight. One wonders if it is possible to extend the series to animals who are caught in six pack plastic rings or swans caught up in fishing line. Much cruelty to animals could be averted if this artist arose to full expressive powers.
One has to like the wood carving going on in the Pease house, Katie Pease carving a crow from wood that reminded a friend of a Guy Denning painting in Conte Crayon. One wonders if we can schedule the brother and sister for a young master class with wildlife woodcarver, Terry Kipling? My camera had lost power, otherwise this account would have more bright spots to discuss. With over one hundred entries. many works of art caught many adult eyes with the power of young art.
We have to thank the photographer who captured the image of all the adults and children out on the plaza where the Marshall Frederick's fountain still flows with water, an image suffused with rays from a sun about to plunge below the horizon. That image captures forever a community gathering, one of the high points of the ArtWalk.
8 & Under Age Category Winners -
~ Sculpture – “Bubble Blowing Turtle Bank” by Case VanHouwelingen
~ Painting – “The Feisty Dragon” by Mya Phares
~ Drawing/Mixed Media – “Untitled” by Will Boyer
~ Photography – “Sunflowers” by Eason Heinz
9-13 Age Category Winners -
~ Sculpture – “Crow” by Katie Pease
~ Painting – “Unknown” by Juliette Goldberg
~ Drawing/Mixed Media – “Summer Breeze” By Michaela Lawrence
~ Photography – “Walk In The Woods” By Dayne Arnett
14-High School Senior Category Winners -
~ Sculpture – “Hearts Don’t Always Align” By Chrissy Klinger
~ Painting – “Untitled” By Clayton Negen
~ Drawing/Mixed Media – “Jane Goodall” by Eamon Duff
~ Photography – “Ice Pier” By Caleb Bohn
Thanks to everyone who voted and congratulations to all of the winners!