If you're feeling stuck in your holiday shopping and want a unique gift, look no further than Upton Hall's Czurles-Nelson Gallery on Wednesday, December 7, and Thursday, December 8. There you’ll find handcrafted jewelry, pottery, scarves, paintings, photos, and prints during the 15th annual Student Sale.
Students in the fine arts, art education, and design disciplines will offer their creations for sale from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday and from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Thursday.
“We run the sale never knowing what we are going to get, which makes it interesting,” said Carol Townsend, associate professor of design, who serves as the sale’s faculty adviser. Items she knows will be included are corset-inspired jewelry and several stoneware tea sets.
Senior Vincent Pontillo will be selling a variety of earrings, pendants, and brooches made from recycled sterling silver, copper, and rubber. “We strive to provide the public with finely crafted, unique items to purchase for the holiday season,” Pontillo said.
The biggest contributors typically come from the jewelry and ceramics disciplines, said Kelly Caruso, a wood/furniture design major who is the sale’s student coordinator. “But we have a good mix of students submitting their work.”
Prices range from $2 note cards to several hundred dollars for larger paintings.
Along with faculty, students, and staff, the public flocks to the sale.“The sale provides a chance for people outside the campus community to see what we are making, and it is good exposure for the visual arts students,” Caruso said.
“Students gain knowledge necessary to the promotion of their work as professional artists or designers, such as display, accounting, and consignment details," Pontillo said.”It also gives a boost to students’ wallets. The students keep 75 percent of their sales, while 25 percent goes toward advertising and other costs for next year's sale.“
"If there is any money left over,” Townsend said, “it is distributed back to the participating programs.”
The Student Art Sale has grown from fewer than 20 students participating the first year to 44 student artists who submitted 544 works last year, according to Townsend, who has advised the sale every year since its inception. “Generally, we have a line of people waiting for the doors to open,” she said. “Everyone wants the first pick. It’s a very exciting time for the students.”