Mackenzie Slater is PAA student award winner for 2016

Mackenzie Slater enjoys working in a variety of media.

Mackenzie Slater enjoys working in a variety of media.

Mackenzie Slater, who will graduate from Penfield High School in June, will receive the annual Penfield Art Association student award for 2016.

An exhibit of her work will be included in the PAA 2016 Spring Show, which takes place June 6 – 11 at the Penfield Community Center, 1985 Baird Road. Slater will receive her award at the reception and awards ceremony 7 ­­– 9 p.m. Tuesday, June 7.

Slater, the only child of Kim and Bill Slater of Macedon, will begin studies at Alfred University this fall where she expects to major in fine art. During high school, she has explored a variety of art media, including painting, ceramics, photography, print-making and jewelry.

“I was always drawn to art as a way to express myself,” she says. She credits Luke Lorenzo, her sixth-grade art teacher at Bay Trail Middle School, with encouraging her interest. Lorenzo, who now teaches in the Penfield High School art department, has continued to be an influence.

Slater is also interested in music and plays bass guitar, but she decided to give up viola to concentrate on art. “It was a hard decision,” she says.

Mackenzie, who received a perfect score on the German language Regents exam, is looking forward to a trip to Germany with her parents this summer. Long-term, she is considering a career as an art teacher or art therapist.

“She was always very talented,” says her father. “She’s worked hard. We’re really proud of her.”

The PAA has presented a cash award to a PHS senior each year since 1976. The winner is selected by the PHS art faculty.

Formed in 1963, the Penfield Art Association today has more than 100 members from throughout the Rochester area. The organization is open to artists of all skill levels and people interested in the two-dimensional visual arts.