Wildcats featured in Cocoa Beach art show

Senior Maggie Dercole is one of among 150 artists and exhibitors who will be entering digital pieces into the Cocoa Beach Arts Show which will be held Nov. 23-25. Artists from throughout the country will unite at the outdoor show in tents along the beach to display original works, ranging from paintings and drawings to stain glass, print making and sculptures. Student artists involved in competitions will come from grades nine through 12 and are organized into three categories: fine arts, sculpture, and graphics and mixed media.

“I’m really excited to interact with students and look around and see all the other student artwork,” Dercole said. “That’s what I usually do at art shows, talking with other students and seeing their techniques, how long they’ve been drawing or painting, et cetera, which has always been my favorite part. I feel like the show encourages a lot of young artists to continue showing because when people show up and talk to you about your art, it’s really like ‘Wow! I can really  look deeper into my art and what other people see in my art as well.’ Like when someone else comes up, maybe they’re not in your age range, they might be older, they might be younger, and how they view your art really shapes how you make your art in the future. So whenever people come and attend, especially if they aren’t necessarily artistic people, it’s really interesting to see how they view your artwork.”

Students in each category will compete for money awards along with ribbons if they place first, second or third. In addition, professional judges will evaluate paintings and sculptural works to reward an artist with a grand prize and the title of best piece.

“It’s always fun to walk the shows and talk to the artists and see what they’re doing right now,” said Matt Henderson, who teaches two- and three-dimensional studio art. “I love to see what people are doing that’s different, that stands out from the normal oil painting or portraitures.”

The public audience also will have access to food and live music. The show will feature entertainment such as bounce houses and arts and crafts for kids. Henderson encourages public viewers to take time during Thanksgiving weekend to visit the show and experience the display of diverse art medias.

“Get out and enjoy the day, go check out the different paintings, drawings, sculptures, enjoy the food, and it’s something different that just doesn’t happen every weekend,” Henderson said. “I think art gives people another avenue of expression. It lets people kind of express how they’re feeling in a visual manner, and those quiet people sometimes do better like that. They express themselves more visually than they do verbally. Also, as a patron, as someone walking around and enjoying the work, it gives you something to kind of create a conversation with and start to talk about the works of art and how those works of art affect you, and how you feel about viewing those works of art; it gives you another realm of expression.”

By Monica Castellanos