Students entry featured in URBANfronts art show

By Jason A. Smith
Times Correspondent

Students at Stockbridge High School garnered accolades for their ability to use their artistic skills to convey technology’s impact on the world.

The school’s Sculpture/Ceram- ics class were recently featured in the American Institute of Architects Atlanta Chapter URBANfronts Creative Expres-sion Art Show. Students who took part in the project include Cameron Willis, Gabby Thomas, Marisia Talley, Bailey Shiflett, Akash Parikh, Breanna Moncrief, Sydney Jones, Phabion Jones, Madison Griffis, Caterra Cook, Alice Chau, Trinity Baker, Greyci Antunez Martinez, Nya Thomas, and Travis Williams.

The Stockbridge High School Sculpture/Ceramics class recently had their sculpture (TRiE) on display in Atlanta. Special photo

The students created a sculpture depicting “the integration of technology and nature,” by way of a data tree, said Media Specialist Leslie Wantland.

“Students decided to build a tree that would be partially built with pieces of technology to represent how technology has taken root in our society,” she said. “They decided to name the tree ‘TRiE’ since in computer science a trie represents a digital tree.

The students were the only high school group who participated in the art show, which also included college students and working artists. Wantland noted that the event marked the first time the students have taken part in a competition of this kind as a group, and that they did a “fabulous” job with it.

“We’ve had students who have sent stuff in as individuals, but this is the first time they’ve done it as a class,” she said. “I think they saw an opportunity to show what a high-school class can do, and they said ‘let’s go for it, lets try it,’ and they ended up winning.”

Wantland commended the class’ art instructor, Kyle Robertson, for helping to guide the students in their quest for success. She added that the students, some of whom have special needs, received more than just recognition for their artwork and commended them for their perseverance.

“Some of the kids, if you talk to them, they’re very shy, but this is where they open up,” said Wantland. “It’s really giving them some hope and options, and encouraging them to try new things. Art is about trying and trying again. If you’re not happy with it, you can change it, you can mold it. Just adding one color can make all the difference. It gives them a sense of value and peace to do this kind work and to express themselves. They’re very diligent, and they thoroughly enjoy their art. They understand that it can be therapy for the viewers, and art can break down barriers.”