This article was written by BenitoLink intern Leila Sadeghian
On March 31, the San Benito County Office of Education hosted its 7th annual student art showcase at the Veterans Memorial Building in Hollister. The event featured artwork from k-12 students all across San Benito County.
Over 2,000 pieces of artwork were submitted. The Office of Education partnered with the San Benito Arts Council to host the event. The theme of this year’s art show was environmental literacy and the impact that humans have on climate change.
Notable art pieces included 3D sculptures made out of plastic water bottles that were painted colorfully and cut into spirals, 3D sculptures that depicted different natural habitats, paper mache collages, portraits of animals and crafts made out of cereal boxes.
Over 400 people attended the exhibit.
“It’s grown every year and we want to acknowledge all of our school districts who participate and make it happen,” said Krystal Lomanto, San Benito County superintendent of schools.
There were also live performances by Yamamoto Hula Ohana, Animation Dance Company, San Benito Dance Academy, and dancers from San Benito High School.
Through their artworks, the young artists portrayed needs such as protecting the oceans, preventing air pollution, recycling and protecting the forests.
“We’ve been really focused on utilizing art making, address social and emotional well-being. We’ve seen a tremendous positive impact on students’ capacity to self-reflect, convey it to one another, and share their feelings. Art Education is crucial and is core curriculum,” said Amanda Chiado, Director of Arts Education at San Benito Arts Council.
“This event is really good for the community,” Aromas-San Juan Unified School District art teacher Rachel Wohlander said. “I think art is really important for the community and bringing the community together. There’s a lot of talent in the community, so it’s nice to see it showcased.”
Many children who attended the event were able to show their parents the art pieces they had created.
“My favorite part about the event is about all the art. I really liked the animal artworks that showcased different types of animals,” said Sadie Pellin, a third grader at Cerra Vista Elementary School who submitted a shark collage made with torn paper pieces.
The San Benito County Office of Education hopes to host this event next spring as well.
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