Several of the Athens Academy Upper School’s senior art students are now showing the culmination of all their hard work over the past six months. 

The school’s 2021 Senior Exit Show is on display through May 14 in the Myers Gallery within its science and art building. The show includes artwork from students Carson Will, Clara Miller, Ellie Crosland, Hayden Wood, Katherine Woody Lucy Waugh and Will Morris. 

“I love this show because it gives our students an opportunity to show their whole body of work,” said their art teacher, Luke Graves. “Oftentimes, the students who take the senior portfolio class have amassed a number of really strong pieces which shows how hard they’ve worked throughout the years.”

Students who take the class learn how to frame, hang and prepare artwork, which teaches them how to potentially monetize their future creative endeavors. 

Graves said the students adapted the show to the ongoing pandemic. The formal opening reception was eliminated, and the show format was changed to be an open gallery style where people can pop in to view it during normal school hours. 

Carson Will sought to recreate photographs, like the woman in the sunglasses, to the best of her ability with oil paint while implementing other unique elements of her own personal style. 

Clara Miller wanted to highlight her and others’ mental health with her artworks. 

“The work I create helps me cope with and process my emotions, and it also allows me to grieve the loss of my father while honoring our relationship through the art I create,” Miller said. “I try to create pieces that embody different emotional periods of my life. Some express darker themes, like struggling with mental illness and feeling broken, while others explore bittersweet feelings, like missing a loved one or imagining they were still here.”

Ellie Crosland enjoyed exploring a variety of mediums, from charcoal to oil paint, while she created her artworks. 

“Each brings its own unique challenges and benefits, and it enables me to grow as an artist,” Crosland said. 

Lucy Waugh explained that even though her pieces portray different kinds of animals, architecture, nature, people and other objects, she seeks to convey the theme of beauty in all her works. 

“Because my art covers a variety of ideas, it illustrates that everything is beautiful in its own way, [both] man-made and natural,” Waugh said. 

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