In Rob Lynch's art class at Niagara Falls High School, you can never quite be sure where students' creativity will lead them.
Take, for instance, this fine Cubist portrait of Millhouse, the incurably nerdy character from "The Simpsons," by 10th-grade art student Ashley Kepp:
It's a clever fusion of Cubist technique and pop culture inspiration, a one-liner that you might call sophomoric if it didn't come from an actual high school sophomore.
Lynch, a local musician and longtime art teacher who is known for inspiring his students to venture beyond the traditional boundaries of the high school art room, explained that the painting was one of Kepper's first art assignments since she was in 7th grade.
"This is the first art class she has had since 13 weeks of art in 7th grade," he said. "I do projects in a variety of media, usually based on 14 different art movements -- we fit in about 14 major projects during the year, and lots of excursions.
"The point of the cubism project was a bit of art history, learning to fragment an image, but really to learn to create value changes and gradients with tempera paint. For many students, this project is the first painting project they can remember doing, so its a skill-builder and fairy easy to succeed with.. Still, this is an excellent example from a hard-working and interested student."
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