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ARHS art teacher says collection has ‘some pretty special pieces’

Grade 12 students Michelle (front) and Brittany have studied art under Cynthia McCarthy’s tutelage. Beside the students are some of the ARHS gallery’s permanent collection. ERIC SPARLING – AMHERST DAILY NEWS.

AMHERST – It’s been there since ARHS opened in 2000. But unless you’re the parent of a teenager, you may not know the lobby of Amherst’s high school features a dedicated art gallery for student work, including a permanent collection of pieces produced by pupils and purchased by the school.

When the new building was being designed, staff members were asked to supply input. Art teacher Cynthia McCarty’s suggestion – an art gallery – got the nod.

“I was so pleased,” McCarthy recalled Wednesday.

McCarthy is in her final year of teaching after a career spanning about three decades. Part of her legacy will be a collection of pieces – sculpture, prints, other media – ARHS has bought from students.

“I thought it was a way of valuing art,” she said.

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