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MacLaren Art Centre celebrates local youth with two new exhibits

A man observes a painting on display in the Portfolio 2023 exhibit on Sat., March 11 (Steve Mansbridge/CTV News). A man observes a painting on display in the Portfolio 2023 exhibit on Sat., March 11 (Steve Mansbridge/CTV News).
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The MacLaren Art Centre is showcasing the talents of local youth artists with the launch of two new projects.

Hundreds were invited to check out the exhibits on Saturday, with each building on decades of partnerships throughout Simcoe County.

First, guests were greeted by the Sarjeant Co. art trucks outside the centre. Local high school students designed decals for each.

The second project, Portfolio 2023, celebrates the work of students from across the region, putting it all on display inside the gallery.

"Not only does it recognize the amazing talent that we have in our region, it offers them a professional opportunity to showcase their art," Said Christina Mancuso, Education Officer at the MacLaren Art Centre.

Kendra Hamer is a former grade 12 student who got to work on the art trucks. She said seeing her work on display gave her joy, with it sharing a deeper meaning.

"Just being able to choose one idea was very difficult," Hamer said. "But when I found my Idea, it was in honour of my grandmother, who passed away suddenly, so all of it is attributed to her."

Meghan Demarsh worked on the Portfolio 2023 project. A grade 11 student, she said she's filled with extra pride to be included in a showcase that predominantly features grade 12 students.

"I'm younger than most of my peers; it's really cool to have the opportunity to have my art in this," she said. "It really makes you feel special."

The Art Centre said the Sarjeant trucks were only displayed today at the gallery but can be spotted driving throughout the community.

The Portfolio 2023 exhibit runs until April 2.  

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