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Rembrandt State Art Convention


Members of the Ridgewood High School Art Club chapter of the Rembrandt Society, along with their sponsor, Mrs. Machaj, joined other Illinois art clubs at the I Hotel in Champaign, Illinois for the Rembrandt Society State Art Convention on March 18, 2022.

The theme for the convention, “The Renaissance”, was followed in the decorations, art workshops and group activities. The convention opened with the introduction of chapters, a coat of arms activity, club photos and the setting up of artwork for judging.

A faculty member from the University of Illinois Art Department gave two presentations. The first treated students to a wealth of knowledge about how to put together a strong portfolio for college applications. The second informed students of the various jobs available in the art field and the majors related to them.

The students attended three hands-on workshops. The first, a Collage Workshop, was presented by Madyson Senior, a Rembrandt Society alumni. Students worked with cut out images, text, found objects and a variety of art media to create their works.

The second, a Creature Sculpture Workshop, was presented by Sarah Machaj, an art teacher and long-time Rembrandt Society member from Ridgewood High School. Mrs. Machaj demonstrated sculpture techniques using common household items. Students used paper towels, masking tape and found objects such as straws, cotton swabs, and plastic lattice to create their own original 3-D creatures.

The third workshop on Mandala Design was presented by Mary J. Winters-Meyer, a local professional artist from Champaign. Ms. Winters-Meyer discussed the origins of mandalas and how the design process has evolved. She displayed her own artwork as well as modern examples, then gave students practical advice on how to design their own original mandalas.

During the convention, students entered artwork for Regional judging in the Rembrandt Art Competition. The following Ridgewood High School students placed in Regional competition.

Emma Blevins Ailyn Domalanta Joseph Headley Emily Nowak Haley Nowak Nathan Ola

Jude Panlilio Joanna Quintana Dayannara Ramos Rory Miodrag

  • a first place and a third place
  • a second place and a third place - a second place and a third place - two second places
  • two first places
  • a second place
  • a first place and a second place - a first place and a second place - a first place and a second place - a first place and a second place

The Ridgewood Art Club had six students place in state judging.

  • Emma Blevins placed 3rd in state in the Graphics category.
  • Rory Miodrag placed 1st in state in the Miscellaneous category for her collage. Haley Nowak placed 1st in state in the Color Drawing category.
  • Jude Panlilio placed 2nd in state in the Sculpture category.
  • Joanna Quintana placed 1st in state in the Ceramics category.
  • Dayannara Ramos placed 3rd in state in the Sculpture category.
  • Haley Nowak entered her portfolio in the Senior Scholarship Competition and won a $250 award. Haley’s artwork, “You Grew Up in Front of Our Eyes” was chosen for a Purchase Award. Haley received $500 for her artwork, which will be on display at Flourishes Gallery and Studio in Shelbyville, Illinois.

The whole day was a wonderful opportunity for Ridgewood students to interact with art students from all over Illinois, have their artwork critiqued and to learn new art techniques. Ridgewood’s Art

Club students are already looking forward to next year’s convention! For more information about the Rembrandt Society, check out their Facebook Page at or contact Sarah Machaj at



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