'Beyond impressive' Student-created works of art on display at Bottle Works

Mar. 19—JOHNSTOWN, Pa. — The talents of students from across the region will be showcased in an artistic display.

The Student Works Juried Exhibition is on display through April 22 in the AmeriServ Activity Center at Bottle Works, 411 Third Ave. in the Cambria City section of Johnstown.

High school students from Cambria, Somerset, Bedford and Indiana counties entered their original works of art to be judged.

The exhibit features works from students at Bishop McCort Catholic, Greater Johnstown, Chestnut Ridge, Central Cambria, North Star, Forest Hills, Conemaugh Valley and Everett Area high schools.

In conjunction with the show, Bottle Works awarded cash scholarships to winning students and provided art supplies to classrooms.

"The level of artistic talent is beyond impressive," said Melody Tisinger, Bottle Works' director of advancement and operations.

"The artwork entered is inspiring, and as an organization, we want to do everything in our power to help these young creatives reach their absolute potential."

The show includes 90 pieces comprising paintings, sculptures, fiber arts and mixed media works.

Tisinger said the art shows off the incredible talents of area students.

"It's exquisite and professional-grade," she said.

"We are really proud of the students around here.

"With some of these students, it looks like they've had some technical training, and that's a testament to the arts educators in the school districts.

"There's natural talent there, but they are coaching students to enhance that ability."

The show was juried by Colleen Albright, a professional artist and Bottle Works studio artist. She received a bachelor's degree in art from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

"She was amazed at the skill level of the work this year," Tisinger said.

Three awards — best of grade, director's choice and honorable mention — were handed out to students in each grade.

Each best-of-grade winner received a $500 cash scholarship to be used for art education.

Each director's choice and honorable mention winner received a $100 scholarship to Bottle Works' educational programming.

Winners include:

—Seniors: Best of grade, Jay Crate, Central Cambria, "Self Portrait"; director's choice, Tehya Dibert, Chestnut Ridge, "Sophie"; and honorable mention, Ahna Stewart, Richland, "Chip Carvings."

—Juniors: Best of grade, Leira Bertolasio, Forest Hills, "The Broken Smile"; director's choice, Kylie Taylor, Greater Johnstown, "Pumpkin"; and honorable mention, Chelsea Dively, Greater Johnstown, "Untitled."

—Sophomores: Best of grade, Valentine Bennet, Greater Johnstown, "Burry Me in Solitude"; director's choice, Ariana Skebeck, Conemaugh Valley, "Enzio"; and honorable mention, Geney Gilbert, Chestnut Ridge, "Red Grapefruit."

—Freshmen: Best of grade, Sarah Calhoun, Everett Area, "Radiant Wonders"; director's choice, Kaitlyn McMullen, Central Cambria, "Un-Still Life"; and honorable mention, Lydia Carnwath, Chestnut Ridge, "Moose Dreams."

In addition, the art classroom of each best-of-grade winner received a $500 art supply stipend sponsored by Blick Art Materials.

Tisinger said the exhibition serves as an introduction to the arts for students.

"Sometimes art might not seem attainable for some students, but we want to show that art is for everybody," she said.

"It can be enjoyed and experienced at every economic and demographic level."

Exhibition sponsors include AmeriServ Financial, RDM-Johns-town, Pennsylvania Highlands Community College, Sheetz and Slovenian Savings & Loan.

There is no fee to attend the exhibit.

Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesdays through Fridays and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays.

For more information, call 814-535-2020 or visit www.bottleworks.org.