The Studio Project: New public art program to engage local teens

(Jackson, Wyo.) - This winter, 18 local high school students will get the opportunity to collaborate and create a public art project. The new program, called The Studio Project, is a collaboration between the National Museum of Wildlife Art and the Art Association of Jackson Hole. The program was inspired by the former Yard Art program put on by the Art association. "We [the National Museum of Wildlife Art] reach out to primarily k - 5 at least once a week, so we are really reaching that demographic, but it came to my attention that there is a huge hole between middle school and high school students that we are not getting up here," said Grace Davis, assistant curator of education and exhibits for the National Museum of Wildlife Art. "So we see this as an opportunity for them to become advocates of art." The Art Association had similar goals of reaching local high school students. "We wanted to reach out to a teen audience," said Michelle Fullenkamp, outreach coordinator at the Art Association. "We have a lot of young students coming through our doors, but after a kid passes middle school we don't see them as much." The students will meet every Monday evening between February and May and will work with Davis as well as designer Neal Zeren to create a 6 foot by 8 foot artistic glass installation. Each student will make seven small glass pieces and one large glass piece. "It is a double layer wall, so they will have to understand structurally how to do this and how to make it safe since it is a public installation," said Davis. "Students will learn to fuse glass, we will work with textiles, etchings, print directly on the glass or anything that gets them really excited." Once completed in May, the piece will be exhibited in public. They have applied for a public art space and hope to get the piece in the Center for the Arts. On top of the classes and project, the students will visit local galleries, artist studios and museums. They will learn how to build their portfolio and market themselves as an artist. "The project is going to address not only offering our mediums working in printmaking and glasswork that they wouldn't be able to do in school, but also support professional development," said Fullenkamp. The application process is currently open and the deadline is January 1 (the application is available here ). Students will be notified if they are chosen by January 15 and classes begin in February. "We are accepting 18 students, which is going to make it a very competitive program to be a part of. There are approximately 900 high school students in the Valley," said Davis. The program is free and all materials are included. "The idea [of offering the program for free] was to bring in an audience that we might not get otherwise and make it possible. We just wanted to take out the cost hurdle," said Fullenkamp. *Feature Photo: General idea what the glass installation will look like. h/t Art Association of Jackson Hole / Pitchengine Communities* #buckrail #news