Student Artwork Featured at Portland Museum of Art for Youth Art Month

Venice Melcher, 10th grade, Portland High School, “Amy.”

Creative works from art students from around Maine are on display online at the Portland Museum of Art (PMA) in celebration of Youth Art Month.


For almost 30 years, PMA and the Maine Art Education Association (MAEA) have collaborated to bring National Youth Art Month to Maine. The exhibition is designed to underscore the value of art education for all children and encourages support for quality art programs in Maine schools.

“This annual exhibition showcases the incredible work produced by K-12 students throughout the state, representing a wide variety of youth perspectives and artistic practices in Maine,” said PMA in a statement about the exhibit.


During the COVID-19 pandemic, Youth Art Month has gone digital for the first time. PMA said the online exhibition “brings exciting opportunities to share the artwork of Maine’s youth with a wider audience. We hope that the artworks in this exhibition inspire more creativity, spark more conversations, and garner support for more arts education in our schools and in our communities.”

The attached artwork is a portrait by Portland High School sophomore Venice Melcher, titled “Amy.” Here is the artist’s statement:

“I created this portrait of my mom because she creates a lot of change in my life and the lives of others. She volunteers weekly at a local hospice and animal shelter, and has a business where she sells reusable products made from organic cotton, along with being a great mom! I used mixed media, including watercolor and acrylic paints. I used the neurographic technique for my mom’s face, and cut out and glued down little pieces of paper to create the objects surrounding her.”

Digital receptions were held on Saturday, March 13, for the young artists and their families.

To view the artwork, see a listing of student artists, and where they go to school in Maine visit the PMA’s exhibit website:

Information for this article was provided by Portland Public Schools as part of the Maine Schools Sharing Success Campaign. To submit a story or an idea, email it to Rachel at