Delbarton AP Studio Art

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Delbarton AP Studio Art

artwork done by CJ Gasser '19.

artwork done by CJ Gasser '19.

artwork done by CJ Gasser '19.

artwork done by CJ Gasser '19.

CJ Gasser, Editor-in-Chief

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“I put my heart and my soul into my work and have lost my mind in the process”-Vincent Van Gogh.

This statement by Vincent Van Gogh truly echoes the spirit and life force of the AP Studio Art Program here at Delbarton. As a graduation requirement, Delbarton students must take an Art class in 8th and 10th grades. However, students also have the opportunity to take Junior Studio Art, which is the prelude to the senior AP course.

In the Spring of one’s sophomore year, it is required to successfully complete an “entrance drawing”. The Art Department sets up a still life that is available to students for two weeks, and during that time students may come in whenever they are free, in order to complete the drawing on time. The Art Department then analyzes the drawing and the past work of the student and decides whether or not one is worthy of entrance into the program. Class size varies from eight to fifteen students. For current seniors, we were split into two sections for Junior Studio Art. Ms. Servilio and Mr. Rodi each taught one section, but worked in tandem throughout the year.

During this time, I was able to grow as an artist and achieve new heights on certain media and styles. Ms. Servilio worked rigorously to create a positive classroom environment and help us all grow and develop as artists. During the course, I was introduced to watercolor, oil painting, etching, and pastel. Moreover, I was able to further refine my skills with a pencil, charcoal pencil, and acrylic paint. One of the highlights of the Junior Art course is the final self-portrait. This self-portrait serves as the “final exam” for the course. However, most students who do not take the course, find this “final exam” easy and not a “real” exam. However, in my years here at Delbarton, I have never spent as much time as I did for the self-portrait than any other final exam. The painting took me approximately two weeks to complete. During the last week of school, I was obligated to come in and work on it before and after my other final exams. All the hard work I put into the painting, helped me achieve both an A on the painting project and an A in the course for the year. I am fortunate to have been able to take this course and learn from both Ms. Servilio and my peers. Junior Art is the building blocks of both my personal interest in art and my work this year in AP Studio Art.

During the summer prior to my senior year, I was required to complete three drawings. After returning from summer break, I sat down with Mr. Rodi, my AP Studio Art teacher, and discussed what changes I needed to make in my drawings, and what ideas I had for my AP studio art concentration. Now you might ask, what is a concentration? Since the course is an “AP course”, the college board requires students to create a “portfolio” for the AP Exam. This portfolio consists of twenty-four images. These images can be any medium and are split into the “breadth” and “concentration” sections. During Junior Art, you essentially complete the broad-based or “breadth section” with twelve images, and then complete the “concentration section” in AP Studio Art in Senior year. For my concentration, I am taking twelve Delbarton faculty members and depicting them as the twelve apostles through acrylic paint. Within these paintings, I will include “Byzantine style” elements and the symbols of all twelve apostles. It took Mr. Rodi and I almost a month of discussions to narrow down what I wanted to do and how I was going to approach it.

Since I am taking AP Art History in addition to AP Studio Art, Mr. Rodi thought it would be interesting if I included both historical and modern elements in my concentration. I am so excited about the progression of my concentration and I look forward to the rest of my year in the AP Studio Art Course.

Overall, if you have ever thought about taking AP Studio Art, I implore you to reach out to either one of the art teachers or myself. The Art courses at Delbarton have been so empowering to me, and have given me a new outlook on both myself and the world around me. In a world that often disregards the beauty and magnificence of art, I find it truly amazing to see my generation working to grow as artists and to reestablish the importance of both Art History and Art as a whole. Pablo Picasso once famously said that “the purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls”. This embodies what it means to be an artist, and how art is not only a building block in everyday society but also in humans quest for love and beauty.

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