For more than 100 students, their schoolwork will come to a uniquely satisfying end Jan. 29 when they watch the bowls they've sculpted and painted go on sale in a professional studio to benefit the Port Washington Food Pantry.
"I think it's important to have a sense that this is what artists do; they give back," said Jane Suddendorf, who organized the event as the gallery's director and an art teacher at PWHS. "It helps them see beyond themselves."
While in the past only high school students could submit bowls, Suddendorf is for the first time accepting bowls from anyone in the community. Anyone can show up at the gallery with a bowl to donate between 8 a.m. and noon Jan. 28.
"I think it's a win-win for everyone," Suddendorf said. "It gives visibility to local artists, and people really appreciate the community aspect of it."
Bowls can be made by woodworking, weaving, altering an existing bowl, decoupage, etching or any creative option an artist can think of, Suddendorf said.
Katie Feyereisen, who teaches ceramics at PWHS, said the students were especially eager to paint Packers and Badgers logos on bowls this year, but she said there is also a wide variety of interests represented, from cows, to hunting, to splatter paint.
For some students, it can be hard to part with their masterpieces, but Feyereisen said sometimes their families buy the bowls.
"It's nice because the money goes to the food pantry, so they get the benefit of giving something back," Feyereisen said.
Several of the students will also help run the event, setting it up and and selling tickets.
brought in about $1500 for the food pantry, and Suddendorf said they hope to at least match that this year.
The event is part of national movement, Empty Bowls, that has also taken hold nearby at Milwaukee Area Technical College.
Anyone can purchase a bowl from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Jan. 29 at Gallery 224, 218 E. Main St., which is connected to the building that houses Dockside Deli.