Numina Gallery To Hold Student Art Exhibition
This Friday, Princeton High School's Numina Gallery will hold its first annual student exhibition in its newly renovated space.
The exhibit will be comprised of work in a multitude of mediums, including painting, drawing, collage, print-making, ceramic and book arts, and other media. More than 300 student works will be on display.
The exhibit has been put together entirely by high school students, with art teachers John Kavalos and Marty Hayden supervising.
"This is the first year we've had an actual gallery for our art. It's a big deal for the high school," said Yelena Safarpour, a junior who is in charge of Numina's publicity.
Although the Numina Gallery was founded in 2000, when students, with the help of Mr. Kavalos, cleared out and renovated a room above the school's art studio to be used to exhibit artwork, it had to be put on hold during high school construction. The new space --a large room with professional lighting-- was created on the basement floor.
"It was nowhere near this size," said Yelena of the gallery's former home.
According to Mr. Kavalos, Numina was created to promote an appreciation for art among high school students, and to encourage their interest beyond the scope of the classroom. It is the only professional student-run gallery in the nation.
A total of 15 students are currently working on the upcoming Numina exhibit. Those who run the gallery assume the responsibilities of director, publicity manager, web designer, installation crew, and curator. The staff generally meets once a week, and directors are working at the gallery every day.
Overall the exhibitions take approximately a month to set up, as students must schedule gallery opening dates, find an artist and/or artwork to exhibit, and prepare the gallery space for the show.
Among the works that have been exhibited at Numina are photographs by Princeton resident Ricardo Barros, paintings by artist Mel Leipzig, and works by Judith Brodsky.
For the inaugural event at Numina's new gallery, this past winter students put together an exhibit as part of the New Jersey Transcultural Initiative, a statewide program organized by the Rutgers Office of Intercultural Affairs. The exhibit, which was done completely by students, was a collage of interviews with different Princeton personalities.
"It took about three years to put the exhibition together," said Mr. Kavalos, adding that Numina had worked with former PHS students on the project who now attend Cooper Union.
"A lot of information we collected [for the exhibit] will go to the Historical Society of Princeton," said Senior Jose de Leon, who is in charge of Numina's finances and will exhibit some of his photographs in the upcoming show.
As part of the upcoming exhibit, some PHS students' work will be exhibited that has been selected to be part of "An Artistic Discovery," a congressional art show sponsored by Congressman Rush Holt's office. The students who were chosen for the exhibit are Jen Lerner, Elisabeth Wolfe, Erin Armington, Krystina Lesnaska, and Annabelle Roberts-McMichal.
Mr. Kavalos said that Numina is anticipating Congressman Holt attending the exhibit, and hope he will consider using Numina's new facility for his show next year.
The opening reception for the student exhibition will be held this Friday, from 6 to 9 p.m. The works can be viewed through June 10, and the gallery hours are Monday through Friday, 3 to 5 p.m., and by appointment. All works at the exhibit will be for sale, and proceeds will go toward the school's visual arts department, as well as to fund Numina's art catalogue.
On Friday, June 3, Numina will bring back its tradition of "Nights of Numina," where students will host a poetry night to welcome the new exhibition. The reading, which will take place from 6 to 8 p.m., is open to the public.
For more information on either of these events, call (609) 806-4314, or visit http://www.numinagallery.com.