Junior Abigail Falk works on a wearable sculpture made of discarded electronics.

All photos by Jennifer Cheung

Although junior Abigail Falk only started taking art classes at Lowell her sophomore year, she has been studying art since she was six years old.

What is your favorite medium and why?

I really like paints because I feel like you have a lot of freedom with them but they also really guide you in the way that you use them. There are tons of different styles and options when you paint.

What inspires your art?

Everyone has a need to channel their energy and to express themselves and I feel like that’s what really drives me. It’s the way that I express myself and it’s the way a lot of people express themselves. There are so many beautiful things in the world. When I travel over the summer or during breaks, there’s so many beautiful things, and it’s really wonderful to be able to express that.

When did you start making art?

My parents signed me up for art classes when I was six. I don’t really know if three circles arranged in a triangle counts as art, but I’ve been taking art classes for a super long time and I’ve enjoyed it for as long as I can remember.

Artwork by Falk

Do you think the Lowell art department is underrated or overrated?

I feel like it’s super underrated. It’s very, very sad. I have a lot of friends who are super good at drawing, or painting, or sculpture, and I get super excited and I’ll encourage them to take the classes and they’ll say, “Oh not me, I’m not good at art.” They’ll put themselves down, and people are really scared of expression. Because of that, they look at the VPA department as a side thing that they don’t really take seriously, and I feel like that’s a huge mistake. There’s so much opportunity here.

Do you think you’ll be applying to art school?

Probably not. Personally, I’m really interested in science and math and I’m probably going to go into biotech, which is a shame because I really, really enjoy this, but I don’t think an art major is for me.

Artwork by Falk

How do you think going to Lowell has changed your approach to art?

Lowell has changed my approach to art in that I don’t have much time for it. The pressure of other classes is a lot, and there’s a lot of competition. There’s a lot of “Where am I going with my future?” and a lot of pressure to succeed academically, especially in your free time, with studying, extra classes, supplements and extracurriculars. I found art really taking a backseat in my life in the past couple of years, which is really sad.

How have Lowell’s art classes influenced you?

I’ve learned a lot of how to best express myself. Ms. Janssen is an amazing teacher and I love her so much. She really focuses on guiding her students and finding what is best for them. I think she’s helped me with that a lot, with feeling comfortable and expressing myself through art, which is great. What’s important in this class for me is that I have a space and a time during the day in which I can process everything that’s happened in my life. You can come in during your lunch block, or I’ll come in during my first block or during class and it’s just a really positive space.

Falk works on wearable sculptures during art class.