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Ambitious Aberdeen Student Art Project Complete

October 18, 2011, 6:11 PM by Erich Schaffhauser

Ambitious Aberdeen Student Art Project Complete
ABERDEEN, SD - Art students in Aberdeen have something to be proud of displayed in front of their school for everyone to see.

We shared a story with you a couple years ago about the students taking on an ambitious project sculpting four large panels out of clay.

As you walk by the now completed large bronze panels in front of Aberdeen Central High School, you'll see the names of students engraved as artists who created them.

"People are like, 'Oh, you did that?'” Hannah Nehlich said, “Yeah, kind of a big deal."

Hannah and Elizabeth Nehlich both contributed to the work that teachers are calling very high quality and caliber.

Smoke from a beaker in one piece becomes a music staff and then paint, which turns into a ribbon and eventually a track to tie all four panels together.

One depicts academics, another the arts, with the final two themed school and community spirit and athletics. Each contains a lot of symbols, both old and new.

Art teacher Sherri Treeby is an artist who's worked on well-known sculptures in the state. She says one of the panels alone would easily run $30,000 if the school had hired a professional to do it.

"I mean we're talking about teenagers that did this and they did an unbelievable job," Treeby said. "I know professional artists that don't do this caliber of work, so very proud of them."

The Nehlich sisters are both honored they were able to help with the artwork. Treeby says it’s the only student work of this caliber she’s seen.

"Every time I drive by Central I stop and look at them. I like showing people them, showing them off," Elizabeth said.

"Usually you think about a school, how did their football team do? How did their basketball team do? You don't really think, 'How are their art kids doing?' So it was a really proud moment to know my name is going to be there. It's really nice to know," Hannah said.

Donations covered the costs of the panels. Treeby says they should last a couple thousand years.

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