Last night, we attended an open house at Frank Sinatra High School in Long Island City. It is a high school that specializes in the arts, including visual arts. Finnian is considering applying for their 2011 grade 9 class. We saw several performances - musical, dance, theatrical, vocal. They also had an exhibition of art works by students in the main lobby.
While I am not especially happy about the prospect of Finnian going to high school, I recognize that it is his choice. He seems to be taking a good approach to it - he will make a decision if and when he actually gets in.
The high school was founded by Tony Bennett (yes, THAT Tony Bennett) so we also saw a short video of Tony talking about why he created it. It is public school, but receives additional funding through other sources courtesy of Tony. Somehow all of this brings up an ancient memory of Dan's when he was working in the photo department check-out booth at Cooper Union in his student days. Tony Bennett was playing in the Great Hall and someone managed to snag leftover chicken from the food spread that had been set out. All evening, as people came and went, checking out photo equipment, they would offer students "chicken. Tony sent it up. It's Tony's chicken."
Frank Sinatra High School may be the biggest piece of Tony's chicken yet.
It is competitive to get into this school. Last year over 300 people applied for 32 slots. Based on the work on exhibition last night, I would say Finnian has the skills to get in. He has to prepare a portfolio of 10-20 works and go for an audition (bascally a drawing test and some writing) in a couple of weeks. We have been drawing and talking about various ideas related to drawing and other 2D techniques. For once my skills actually match his questions!
I ordered a book that contained drawings that radically changed my life when I was a teenager.
It is thrilling to be able to share these drawings with Finnian and see how they are exciting him too.
PS. When I checked in to my etsy shop this morning, I was delighted to discover that someone had decided that my hefty 600 yd skein was worth the price tag I had put on it. Two other skeins also found new homes. I guess you just never know!