In Brendan Coogan’s classroom at the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School, student Amy Fligor daintily painted her nails; all fifty of them.
“We have a pot, like a deep fryer that we melt wax in,” Amy said. “I stuck my fingers in the wax . . . Now I’m trying to make the fingernails a little more pink.”
Amy is one of 33 Martha’s Vineyard Regional High school students who received an award at the Boston Globe Scholastic Art Awards competition. Her waxed fingers holding a cup described by her as “holding the world in the palm of your hand,” received an honorable mention.
Fellow student Lauren Dostal was named a gold key winner for photography, although “her forte right now is melting crayons,” said Mr. Coogan as he showed off one of her mannequins dripping with a rainbow of wax.
Hannah Moore, also a gold key winner, created a drawing of hands holding a fish to represent humans’ relationship with nature. And Aaron Teves was named gold key winner for his design of a house. His love of architecture began as a boy, when he would visit houses across the Island that his father caretaked.
In total, the high school earned 41 awards in mixed media, photography, architecture, ceramics, sculpture, drawing, jewelry, painting and writing.
“How can you put this into words?” said drawing and painting teacher Janice Frame. “It’s the joy of seeing kids grow through school — optimal word grow — visually with thought and care and almost addiction for arts in all mediums.” Mrs. Frame, who is retiring at the end of this year along with art, design and technology department chair Paul Brissette, said these were the most awards the high school has received at the competition.
“It’s a reflection of the community,” Mr. Brissette said. “These students come in with a certain sensibility from their families, the galleries and the Island.”
For the entire month of March, the gold and silver key winners’ work will be on exhibit at the State Transportation Building in Boston. The twelve gold key winners will continue to New York City for the national competition.