An African-inspired ceramic mask took best-in-show honors at the Arts Center of Yates County’s annual Yates County Student Exhibit. The exhibit features artwork from junior and senior high school students from Penn Yan, Dundee, and Marcus Whitman.  

The Arts Center brings in member artists to judge the work for each school in three categories – drawing, painting, and other two-dimensional work; photography; and, three-dimensional work. This year’s judges included retired art curator Phyllis
Maciag and multi-medium artist Pat Jackson, both of Dundee; photographer Bill Norton and potter Faith Benedict, from Penn Yan; and potter Michael Maxwell, of Rock Stream.

All the judges remarked on the difficulty of choosing among such a strong showing of work from each district. The “Best in Show” award was given to a ceramic mask created by Penn Yan Academy  senior Courtney Schenk, whose work in drawing and painting and photography also won praise.  

Sophomore Hope Austin’s multi-image painting of the same image (a globe) drawn on different days using different techniques took a first in Drawing and Painting for Dundee, while Aubrey Bagley’s Fauvist Self-Portrait was a strong contender for best in show but also ended up with a first in Drawing and Painting for the Marcus Whitman junior.

The Yates County Student Exhibit will be open through March 15. The Arts Center is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.  Admission is free.