Student Artwork Honored in Competition

When Wellesley’s Page Waterman Gallery, owned by alumnus Sturdy Waterman ’74, celebrated its centennial in 2017, the gallery decided to look forward as well as back. That year, Page Waterman launched its Next Up! art competition for high school students in Wellesley and surrounding towns. The highly competitive event tends to draw serious art students and is juried by a distinguished panel of working artists. Even in this disrupted pandemic year, the show went on—and Rivers students garnered an impressive number of awards.
“The Page Waterman Gallery has done an amazing job of pivoting during the pandemic, capturing the best of an online experience as well as exhibiting honored works in the gallery,” says visual art department chair Tim Clark. First-, second-, and third-place winners in three categories—photography, ceramics/sculpture, and drawing/painting—will be on display in the gallery through May 28, while the work of all recipients, including honorable mentions, can be viewed online on the Page Waterman website. You can also view the winning works here, on the Rivers website.
 
“It’s a unique show in that it is for both public and private schools,” Clark continues. “They always have first-rate jurors who put a lot of thought and intention into it. Because the pool is smaller, the work is getting significant attention from those jurors.” Further, he explains, “This is really a show for which we pull submissions from our top artists. It’s targeted toward students in our advanced classes.”
 
One way in which Page Waterman has taken advantage of the online experience is by giving students the opportunity to include brief video artist’s statements about their works; the videos can be seen on the website. In her video, Hannah Lapides ’22, who took first-place honors in the photography category, explains how she came to shoot her winning picture, titled “Winter Exhale.” “It was taken rather spontaneously,” says Lapides. “I wanted to capture the movement of falling snow, so I had my sister blow a handful of snow toward the camera. I had no idea if it would come out well, but I was pleased with the results.”
 
For her stoneware piece, which won third prize in the ceramics/sculpture category, Isabelle Guiliano ’21 explained that she used online software and a 3D printer to create her stoneware clay work, titled “Overshadow.” “During the process, I struggled with making the base match the shape and angle of the piece. I also enjoyed learning to use the spray booth when glazing my piece,” says Guiliano.
 
Clark says that, from his point of view, one of the best parts of the Next Up! show is the excitement it generates among students. And this year, with all its challenges, may have inspired students to dig deep and produce some of their best and most thoughtful work. Pondering the winning works, Clark concludes, “I think it’s safe to say it was a strong year for us.”

Here's a list of awards earned by Rivers students.
 
Photography Category:
First prize: Hannah Lapides ’22, “Winter Exhale”
Third prize: Will Elwood ’22, “Spatial Puzzle”
Honorable mention: Maggie Leeming ’21, “Affection c. 2020”
Honorable mention: Mia Simon ’22, “No Change”
 
Ceramics/Sculpture Category:
Third Prize: Isabelle Guiliano ’21, “Overshadow”

Drawing/Painting Category:
Honorable mention: Keira Thompson ’22, “Poetic Justice”
Honorable mention: Lindsey Filoon ’21, “Beyond Expression”
Honorable mention: Annie Heuer '21, "Tension"
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