MERCED -- Works by advanced high school art students from the area took center stage Thursday at the Merced Multicultural Arts Center, with an opening reception for a special exhibit showcasing their work.
The purpose of the exhibit is to recognize and honor the talent of high school students and give them a chance to show their work in a professional environment, according to Julie Rivard, Merced High art teacher.
Each student's work was chosen for the show based on its level of quality and creativity.
For many students, the event is the first time they've received public recognition for their work. The exhibit includes artwork by students from Merced, Buhach Colony, Le Grand and Atwater high schools.
Rivard said the students whose works are displayed in the exhibit have studied art for at least three years in high school.
"An exhibit of this level reinforces what they have learned in school and the opportunities available in the arts. Many of these students plan to go on to study art at the college level," Rivard wrote in an email.
The exhibit is on the second floor of the Merced Multicultural Arts Center at 645 W. Main St.