High school students in KC metro area compete in visual arts at Merriam Community Center

Leah Wankum - December 7, 2018 11:00 am
More than 100 students and their families came out to the visual arts competition last night at the Irene B. French Community Center, where they competed for top places in photography, 2D, 3D and computer-generated artwork.

Students from all over the Kansas City metro area showcased their artistic talent last night at a visual arts competition.

The exhibit took place at the 22nd annual High School Visual Arts Competition yesterday evening at the Tim Murphy Art Gallery at the Irene B. French Community Center.

Anna Slocum, Merriam parks and recreation director, said the city organizes the competition every year to introduce young adults to the competitive art world, and also give them the chance to be critiqued by a professional artist.

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“Kids are recognized for athletics; they need to be recognized for arts and culture,” Slocum said. “This gives us an opportunity to recognize students for an area that sometimes is not always recognized at this level.”

The competition is divided into four categories: two-dimensional, three-dimensional, photography and computer-generated. Teachers from 24 high schools across Kansas and Missouri entered 1,355 pieces of artwork from their students. Of those, only 160 pieces from 22 schools were accepted. And only 24 pieces actually placed in competition.

All 160 pieces of accepted artwork were on display during the opening reception. During the exhibit, Kirsten Mills met up with her daughter to admire her art piece on display. Olivia Mills, a senior at De Soto High School, won first place in the computer generated category for her piece, “Evolution.”

Olivia began her piece by deconstructing a butterfly (selectively removing pieces of the wings); she even utilized layering techniques from her artist grandfather, Skip Harwick. Olivia used Adobe Illustrator exclusively.

“She saw how the deconstruction was as beautiful as the construction itself,” Kirsten Mills said.

Submissions at this year’s competition were judged by Marshall, Missouri-based artist-couple Ted and Jan Denton. During the awards ceremony, the judges announce winners and then explain why each piece was selected for first, second or third place or honorable mention.

Roughly 300 people attended the opening reception.

Here’s the list of 2018 High School Visual Arts Competition winners:

Photography

‘Distant’ by Sophia Bowersock of Blue Valley West High School won first place in photography.
  • 1st place: “Distant” by Sophia Bowersock, Blue Valley West High School
  • 2nd place: “Ambitious Jonas” by Leslie Ostronic, Lawrence High School
  • 3rd place: “Batter Up” by Loren McQueeny, DeSoto High School
  • Honorable mention: “Trouble” by Leslie Ostronic, Lawrence High School
  • Honorable mention: “Cracking Open a Cold Horizon” by Anna Welton, Lawrence Free State High School
  • Honorable mention: “Tail Lights” by Robby Helling, Blue Valley West High School

Two-dimensional

‘Grandpa’ by Katelyn Robey of Park Hill High School won first place in two-dimensional art.
  • 1st place: “Grandpa” by Katelyn Robey, Park Hill High School
  • 2nd place: “Mold” by Wyatt Carson, Lawrence High School
  • 3rd place: “Mother” by Ja-Min Lee, Blue Valley Northwest High School
  • Honorable mention: “Red White & Blue” by Wyatt Carson, Lawrence High School
  • Honorable mention: “A Look in the Mirror” by Eric Galbreath, Lawrence High School
  • Honorable mention: “Wash” by Anya Thurman, Staley High School

Three-dimensional

‘Holding for You’ by Gauge Kellogg of Olathe West High School won first place in three-dimensional art.
  • 1st place: “Holding for You” by Gauge Kellogg, Olathe West High School
  • 2nd place: “A Light Within” by Kaylee Klienschmit, Olathe West High School
  • 3rd place: “Two Dip Chip” by Hailey Warden, Olathe Northwest High School
  • Honorable mention: “Bone Spur” by Alex Hardinger, Blue Valley West High School
  • Honorable mention: “Hic Sunt Dracones” by Genevieve Ansay, Blue Valley Northwest High School
  • Honorable mention: “Trickle” by Natalie Beiter, Baldwin High School

Computer-generated

‘Evolution’ by Olivia Mills of DeSoto High School won first place in computer-generated art.
  • 1st place: “Evolution” by Olivia Mills, DeSoto High School
  • 2nd place: “Prey” by Autumn Sanders, Staley High School
  • 3rd place: “Harper’s Light” by Sullivan Dial, Winnetonka High School
  • Honorable mention: “American Assassin Redesign” by Karryn Robinson, Blue Valley Northwest High School
  • Honorable mention: “Coco” by Angelica Haase, Olathe Northwest High School
  • Honorable mention: “Letter Boy” by Cole Huang, Lawrence Free State High School

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