Our open art studios are an oasis for boys
Courses in the art department are offered across a variety of mediums and are designed to give students individual voice and strengthen their confidence while building technical skill and artistic literacy.Whether they are novices or experienced artists, students find respite in its unique space and inspiration in the creative process. Art teachers foster a fun and safe studio environment that encourages experimentation with many types of media and the sharing of artistic inspiration.
“I like the feeling of relaxation and excitement when I make the pen strokes and brush strokes while I work during art class. Art is one of the classes that provides me passion and joy throughout the school year. Also, I really like art class because I can literally see the effort that I spend on my projects.”
- Wooseong 'Logan' Seo ’22
National Art Honors Society
For more than 40 years, the National Art Honor Society programs have provided national recognition and opportunities for students who exhibit outstanding scholarship in the visual arts, and for their teachers. In this time of uncertainty and potential isolation, connecting and acknowledging outstanding visual arts students is more imperative than ever. Avon Old Farms participates in the NAHS and thereby provides students, faculty, school, and community with invaluable benefits—including peer recognition, leadership growth opportunities, college and career preparation, recognition of the AOF art program, and so much more.
The creativity and energy of AOF students is on full display in our new Ordway Art Gallery. Additionally, visitors to this unique space will find hand-crafted oak cabinets created on campus by talented staff members and an Alumni Spotlight that currently features the photography of Moises Esquenazi '89.
Since it is difficult to confine the creative process to a single academic period, art students often use enrichment to continue work on their projects under the support and guidance of their teachers and fellow art students.
A box truck turned into a pinhole camera. A blank skate deck turned into a canvas. The possibilities for art are endless, and each year select students have the opportunity to work with professional artists here on our own campus. Visiting artists bring new perspectives to a familiar place, allowing Avonians to expand their creative horizons.
- Christo, who invited them to help wrap the Pont Neuf in Paris
- Peter Max, a pop/op artist who had close ties to the Beatles
- Marc Mellon, a sculptor known for his monumental commemorative statues including one of President Bush now permanently on display in The Smithsonian Institute’s National Portrait Gallery
- Gerry Lynas, sand sculptor and graphic designer, who was instrumental in the development of freestyle Frisbee competition
- Dieu Donné, a non-profit, artist workspace dedicated to furthering creative explorations and innovations in handmade paper
- Tom Otterness, an American sculptor whose cartoonish and cheerful bronze works adorn parks, plazas, subway stations, libraries, courthouses, and museums in New York
With support from the endowment and from the Parent Association, Avon’s art department is fortunate to be able to take several art field trips to museums and galleries. From annual New York City and Boston day trips to quicker visits to more local studios, Avon artists are exposed to a wide variety of inspiration. Recent trips have included:
- Wadsworth Atheneum
- New Britain Museum of American Art
- Hill-Stead Museum
"Your program has always had some the strongest work in our national high school photo contest. As I told Joseph Kooluris, it is clear that his teacher really makes a difference. Photography has become one of the important subjects that students can learn. Social Media has made photography ubiquitous and the images we see can change our world view as well as shape our view of ourselves, for good or bad. In my opinion, every student should be required to take one photography class, so they possess the visual literacy that is required to navigate an increasingly complex medium."
Paul Runyon, Associate Professor, Program Director Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts and Design, Drexel University