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Student art exhibited at museum

April 06, 1997

By KERRY LYNN FRALEY

Staff Writer

Watching her own and other students mill through the two galleries looking for their art work, Debby Renn could relate to the excitement they felt at having their work shown in a real art museum.

"I came here when I was an art student," said Renn, now an art teacher at Lincolnshire Elementary School. "It's like a continuing thing."

This year's Public School Art Exhibition at the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts opened Sunday with an afternoon reception featuring punch and cookies provided and served by county art teachers.

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The exhibition is a Washington County tradition dating back to 1921, said Lee Weaver, supervisor of fine arts for the Washington County Board of Education.

This year's show - featuring more than 500 pieces of art work by elementary, middle and high school students - can be viewed during normal museum hours through April 27, Weaver said.

Teachers had the tough job of picking which art work to display in their school's designated space, said Weaver, who estimates county students generate around 100,000 pieces of art work in a year.

The show usually runs during May, with the opening reception drawing as many as 2,000 people in past years, he said.

It was moved up to April this year because of a scheduling problem at the museum, he said.

With newcomers seamlessly replacing their predecessors in a continuous stroll around the gallery walls, it was hard to tell how many people came out this year.

Lenora Deavers of Boonsboro said she came to see what granddaughter Calla Giles, a second-grader at Fountain Rock Elementary School, had made.

It was an honor to have work chosen two years in a row, said Calla, 8, who said she was very proud that her grandmother and other family members came to see her marker drawing.

Ita Kavanagh said she invited her whole family to come see the watercolor painting of a waving clown done by daughter Mary, 8, a second-grader at Potomac Heights Elementary School.

"We're happy that they have a program like this in the schools and the children can have their art displayed," Ita Kavanagh said.

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