NAHS hosts annual school-wide art show: student artwork put on display, new members inducted



CHS junior Danielle Beattie shows off her artwork at the NAHS art show.

Dara Fisher

The Communications High School cafeteria was decorated with artwork on Thursday, March 23, showcasing the creativity of students at the annual National Art Honor Society (NAHS) art show and induction.

The art show included an abundance of works from CHS classes such as Introduction to Design, Illustration and Design, Photography and Graphic Arts as well as personal student submissions.

Among the displays at the art show, junior Lydia Olivieri of Colts Neck produced a recreation of a dress known as a Robe à l’anglaise from an 18th-century painting.

“Fashion is such a big part of my life that it’s something I want to be able to share with others,” Olivieri said. “The art show seemed like a perfect way to bring this new medium into the artistic community at CHS and display something that I consider to be really important to my self-identity as an artist.”

The event was headed by NAHS advisors Shelley Ortner and Laura Gesin. Ortner finds running the art show to be a rewarding experience, as many students can showcase their unique work and parents can view the high-quality art pieces.

“It’s so enjoyable to see work that students do on their own, like students who have interests in fashion or sculpture represented in the show,” Ortner said. “Sometimes you think when you’re a teacher in class that the students don’t really care, so seeing students walk around with their family members and proudly show off what they’ve done is always really fun.”

Senior and NAHS president Ashley Skarbek of Spring Lake Heights noted the versatility of the work in the art show this year.

“We had a TV with photography, paintings from AP art students, and we even had some short films there which were great because it was so inclusive of everyone’s art styles,” Skarbek said.

The art show and induction ceremony have changed over the years, especially with the influence of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Since the pandemic, we started really curating the artwork, thinking about where everything should be placed and what types of pieces should be displayed,” Gesin said.“It forced us to be more thoughtful about the show.”

According to Ortner, accepting artwork and setting up for the show in the cafeteria has proven to be a lengthy process.

“Since we don’t have a space in CHS to leave the art show up, everything has to be put up in a matter of hours and immediately taken down at the end of the show,” Ortner said. “The process really starts about a month before when we ask students to submit artwork and choose high-quality work to display.”

There was much planning involved for the NAHS induction ceremony as well, as the advisors created and signed certificates for the inductees, and the students practiced before the induction.

The ceremony took place during the second half of the art show, welcoming the club’s new members and congratulating them on their achievements. NAHS is one of four honor societies at CHS and offers students the ability to highlight their artistic capabilities and receive recognition for their talents.

“I felt very proud to be inducted into the art honor society and have a role in such a creative part of our school,” junior and NAHS council member Cayla Carlson of Neptune said.

Junior Danielle Beattie of Wall Township was also inducted into NAHS and appreciated viewing the variety of art pieces.

“I thought the show was awesome because there were a lot of really cool pieces there that I wouldn’t have gotten the opportunity to see if it weren’t for the show,” Beattie said.

“Walking around was super fun and I was happy that my artwork was showcased as well.”