Molly Handloff ’24 was recently selected by Artsonia as its 7th–9th grade Artist of the Week for her piece entitled “Individual.” During the contest, Handloff received an astounding 728 online votes. As a result, Handloff will be awarded a special plaque and a $50 prize. Her teacher, Nina Silverman-Weeks will receive a $100 gift certificate for classroom supplies and materials.
In preparation for this assignment, Silverman-Weeks shared with her students the artwork of the Saar Family, including Mother Betye Saar, 92, and her daughters Alison and Lezley. These women told stories through their art, working with found objects to explore race and racism by digging into history to create narratives.
The young artists in Silverman-Weeks’ class were asked to consider the essential questions: How does knowing the contexts, histories, and traditions of art forms help artists explore identities? As individuals, we each have a personal angle to deal with the issue of identity. How do artists and designers create works of art that effectively communicate?
She then challenged her students to search for their own “found objects” and use them in a creative, artistic manner as the basis for their own narrative.
Handloff’s artistic response to those questions resulted in her award-winning work. She elaborated: “My piece represents one person against society and shows how our generation is fighting for causes we believe in. I enjoy creating pieces of art and telling stories. For “Individual” I used jigsaw puzzle pieces, canvas, a pencil, and a yellow Sharpie pen.”
In announcing the award, Artsonia recognized Silverman-Weeks for “her efforts to create a positive, supportive community with her art program.” We congratulate Molly and Mrs. Silverman-Weeks for their creative work in the field of visual arts.
Handloff’s winning piece can temporarily be seen on Artsonia’s website www.artsonia.com under the title of Molly4470.