Young Curator- Student to Watch for


Morgan Reed, Editor

Among the several talented and dedicated students at Glenwood Springs High School, one in particular stands out from the crowd.


Senior Annika Bucchin, student council member, cross country skier, and runner for the GSHS Demons, has added to her list of accomplishments. She is a young curator for the Aspen Art Museum this year. She will  be presenting a curated art show in the Glenwood Springs High School Library from May 10th through May 14th, with an opening night ceremony held on the 10th and 11th for parents.


When I was a freshman some of my sister’s friends were a part of the program and it sounded really cool, so I applied the following year and became obsessed with it so now I have done it 3 years in a row,” said Bucchin. 


Bucchin grew up surrounded by art, she went to art shows and created art with her mom at a young age, so she has always been interested in the behind-the scenes of making shows and putting up exhibitions. 


“I’m not very art oriented…so becoming a curator allowed me to be in the art world without having to make physical art,” she added. 


Young Curators is one of the three teen-driven internships at the Aspen Art Museum, along with Teen Artists and Teen Council. In a non-Covid year, ten or so students from across the valley would meet at the museum and work with museum staff under Annie Henninger, the leader of  Young Curators, to create a theme for a valley-wide show that is sent to all of the high schools in the valley. However, this year Bucchin is one of only two participants in the program, along with Lily McCann-Klauze, who is creating a show about how you illustrate your own gender for the Rifle Public Library. 


Every fall the Aspen Art Museum sends out a notice to art teachers all over the valley about the program. While students do not have to be enrolled in AP Art, they do need a recommendation from an art teacher at their school. Students can then fill out a digital application that requires a statement about why they want to be a curator and what habits they have to make a good team player. 


The program is about six month long, and curators get the chance to walk around the museum after it is closed and talk with their peers or artists whose work will be in the museum professionally. 


While Bucchin is of course working in collaboration with the Aspen Art Museum as part of her internship, she is the creator and director of the show and will be in charge of jurying the show. Jurying refers to the selection of a certain number of pieces from all of the submissions to create a cohesive collection.


“As a teen during Covid, I think I changed a lot and learned a lot about myself and I thought it would be interesting to hear the stories of other students at the high school,” said Bucchin. And it was this that motivated her to theme her show around telling your own story. 


To keep decisions unbiased, with the theme of the show in mind rather than the individual artist, young curators are expected to look at the emotion or intention of the piece and whether or not it fits the theme of the show. After all pieces have been submitted, Bucchin will sit down and anonymously select pieces she thinks best represent her theme. Because of the huge number of submissions that come in each year, this process could take several days to complete. 


Students shouldn’t feel bad if their work is not selected to be featured in the show, Bucchin clearly indicated that this does not mean their piece wasn’t good enough to be in the show, it simply didn’t fit the theme how she wanted. 


“It is an incredible experience and I encourage any student if they are even remotely interested to apply because it is a great experience and you make so many friends along the way,” Bucchin stated. 


The show will encompass works that were made between March 2020 and April 2021 as well as works that were made specifically with the show in mind. Students can submit any pieces they’ve made between the time frame that they feel represent their story, or they can make a new item specifically for the show. 


While Bucchin does not plan on pursuing fine arts at Montana State University, where she will be attending college this fall, she is interested in the curatorial department that is offered at the school.