Scarborough High School senior Michaela Mallozzi stands beside some of her work that is on display at the school’s art show, which will run until winter break in the learning commons. Catherine Bart photo

SCARBOROUGH — While academics and athletics are well-represented at Scarborough High School, art teacher Erin Landry-Fowler said she would like to start seeing more exposure for the arts.

One way that the art teachers at SHS are tackling this problem is through the school’s first art show, said Landry-Fowler, which had its opening reception on Dec. 4.

Both art and non-art students submitted work for the show, like paintings, drawings, photography and ceramics, all currently up on display at the school’s learning commons.

The gallery will remain until winter vacation, said Landry-Fowler; the program will hold another show in April.

Senior Michaela Mallozzi, who had various pieces up in the gallery, said that she gets a warm feeling inside when people compliment and view her work.

A mixed-media artist, Mallozzi said she will continue her education next year when she plans to major in graphic design at the Institute of Art and Design at New England College.

“I’ve learned a lot in school,” she said, “like how to be more creative.”

Mallozzi has also recently submitted work to a gallery in Augusta; she was the only student from Scarborough chosen to do so.

Some of the pieces Mallozzi submitted for the high school’s art show included a water color landscape, a mixed-media collage and a portrait.

“About half of (the pieces) were random ideas,” she said. “The other half were school assignments. They just kind of come to me, or sometimes I’ll see something strange and go, ‘Hmm.'”

Mallozzi gets inspiration through Pinterest boards, she said, and looks to other artists and photographers on Instagram when she is having difficulty coming up with an idea.

Michaela Mallozzi painted a watercolor landscape for Scarborough High School’s art show, which had its opening reception on Dec. 4. Mallozzi has been accepted into an art program at New England College, where she said she plans to major in graphic design.

Landry-Fowler said that the art program at SHS is a great way for students who want to pursue art to get experience, but it’s also great for students who just want to express themselves and be creative.

“Expression is such an important thing in the high school level,” she said. “The students have a chance to channel something.”

Art classes also utilize technology, which is a necessary tool for most students when they go off to college, said Landry-Fowler.

Each year, art students must create a digital portfolio of their work, and that reinforces technology skills and education found in other classes, said Landry-Fowler.

“Anything going on in art will be useful,” said art teacher Elise Pelletier. “It’s not a separate thing from the other classes.”

She and Lisa Ruhman, a ceramics teacher, noted how learning arts helps with hand-eye coordination, too.

Some of the courses offered through the SHS art program include art foundations, painting, advanced drawing, photography, ceramics and various media classes, said Landry-Fowler and Eric Huntington, the school’s visual production teacher.

“We’re hoping to get an art club up and running,” Landry-Fowler said. “I think Scarborough is known for its academics and sports, and we’ve been looking for opportunities for students to shine through art and culture.”

Many students have been asking for an art club, she said.

Mallozzi said that she values the feedback she has received from through the art show. She feels supported by her parents and the community.

“I won’t think that my work is that great, but then people come up to me and compliment me,” she said.

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