Guild Hall in East Hampton is looking towards the future, the future of the art world that is. Starting Saturday, January 20 through Sunday, February 11, you can admire works from local rising stars who reside across the Hamptons – from Montauk to Bridgehampton – at Guild Hall’s 26th Annual Student Art Festival (SAF).
“Our 26th Annual Student Art Festival involves over 14 regional schools and 3,000 students from kindergarten through 12th grade,” explained Casey Dalene, Curatorial Assistant/Registrar/Lewis B. Cullman Associate for Museum Education, who produces the Festival with Jennifer Brondo, General Manager of the John Drew Theater at Guild Hall, and Lewis B. Cullman Associate for Theater Education.
An opening reception will take place on Saturday, January 20 from 2 to 4 p.m. The festive affair will include performances by the Bridgehampton High School Marimba Ensemble, East Hampton High School Dance Team, East Hampton Middle School Dance Team, Amagansett School Chorus, and Abigail Loos of the East Hampton Home School Group. Additionally, students in attendance will be gifted with a Guild Hall “Let Artists Lead the Way” drawstring sports bag that was designed by Anna Rafferty, a student in Sheila Batiste’s art class at East Hampton High School. The bags will also be for sale in the Guild Hall shop.
“The students’ work ranges from painting to sculpture, photography, mixed media, performance and more,” Dalene noted. “As an institution dedicated to the arts in our local community, this is an exciting time for us when we celebrate our future: the next generation of artists!”
The SAF embraces Guild Hall’s mission of nurturing budding artists by offering the opportunity to present their work in a professional setting, as well as hosting on-site and in-school educational programming. While the SAF is on display, Guild Hall will hold several student workshops.
Michael Combs, Artist and Professor at The School of Visual Arts, will lead an art portfolio workshop for students in 10th through 12th grade who are interested in pursuing an advanced art degree on Saturday, January 27 from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. Younger students, in kindergarten through 5th grade, are invited to join Alexandra McCourt for a one hour art workshop on Saturday, February 3 at 11 a.m. or 1 p.m. Admission to both classes are free, but reservations are required.
Local middle schoolers will pay homage to the written word during Word Up! East Enders will be visited by local poets who will help the students explore the constructs of poetry through writing exercises. The students’ assignments will be celebrated during a performance on Wednesday, January 31 at 7 p.m. that is open to all.
Students who dabble in film are encouraged to submit a project to Guild Hall’s 15th Student Film Contest. Submissions are due by Thursday, February 22 and entries will be separated into three categories: grades 2-4; grades 5-8; and grades 9-12. Top honors will be fêted during an Awards Ceremony on Saturday, March 29 at 6 p.m. The evening will include viewings of the honorees’ original videos.
“For 26 years the Student Art Festival has served to foster the artistic aspirations of young people in our community,” added Andrea Grover, Executive Director of Guild Hall. “We are wholly dedicated to supporting the arts as a fundamental and vital tenet of education by offering enriching opportunities and programs for young artists.”
Guild Hall is located at 158 Main Street in East Hampton. For more information, call 631-324-0806 or visit www.guildhall.org.