Heights Youth Club members become urban artists at Cleveland Museum of Art

Callie Williams and Julie Rainey with "A Butterfly."

The Heights Youth Club (HYC), in partnership with the Boys and Girls Club of Cleveland, proudly contributed to the world of art in December and January in an educational exhibition at the Cleveland Museum of Art.

"The exhibition was a total success and the room was packed the day I visited on Dec. 27," said Roscoe Morgan, HYC director.

Youths aged 7–18 years submitted their artwork for display. "In total there were 30 pieces of art selected from across seven local Boys and Girls Clubs, and of that 30, the Heights Youth Club was responsible for nearly half, with 13 pieces in total," said Julie Rainey, the club's arts and culture instructor. Rainey said there was a wide range of two-dimensional paintings and drawings in the collection, and that the work of two club members, Lydia Sicking (age 16) and Callie Williams (age 8), was particularly impressive. Sicking presented a Vincent van Gogh-inspired piece called "Starry Night" and Williams presented "A Butterfly" as well as a Marilyn, inspired by Andy Warhol.

According to Rainey, the young people take delight in their work, have fun and experience a real sense of achievement when they see their work on display for all to see and enjoy.

Rainey especially liked the juxtaposition of the museum's art in its galleries and the young people's artwork (which was presented on the lower education level), and believed it was set up in a way that captured people's attention. She encourages her budding artists to develop their artistic skill set and to learn the history of art. In January, Callie Williams was named Artist of the Month for good behavior, contributions and participation.

Rainey said that HYC art club members plan to enter sculptures in the Boys and Girls Clubs of America's National Fine Arts Competition. 

The Heights Youth Club is a nonprofit organization serving Cleveland Heights. Donations to support its projects are welcome, and can be sent to Heights Youth Club, 2065 Lee Road, Cleveland Heights, 44118 or by visiting www.heightsyouthclub.org, and clicking "learn more" and "donate."

Louise Khayat

Louise Khayat is administrator for the Heights Youth Club Board of Directors.

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Volume 7, Issue 2, Posted 11:36 AM, 01.30.2014