Young artists advancePublished 12:22am Thursday, April 4, 2013
Works from Suffolk high school students are moving on to an international contest through the Sister Cities International program.
Suffolk Sister Cities hosted a Young Artists and Authors Showcase for local students to create artwork and writing around the theme “The Power of Exchange.” The work is on display at the Suffolk Center for Cultural Arts, 110 W. Finney Ave., through April 19.
Best in Show winner Grace Haddad, a sophomore at Nansemond-Suffolk Academy, said she was surprised to learn her work was chosen as best in show.
“I was just really amazed, because I had looked at all the other pieces, and there was lots of really good work out there,” she said. “I was happy to win, but it was a shock.”
Haddad said she came up with the idea for her work by observing how much people depend on communication devices for interaction.
She took a picture of her own eye and enhanced it with the image of a computer screen reflected in her eye.
“It was just to show how much we’re looking at the screen and how we communicate through that,” she said, adding that viewers of her work might “realize how much they are looking at the screen and how it’s become important for communication.”
More than 120 pieces of art, essays and poems were submitted in the contest. Judges were professors from Paul D. Camp Community College and Tidewater Community College.
Other first-place winners in the show were Amira Manes of King’s Fork High School with poem “I Call You, You Call Me,” and Kiraney Zhang of Nansemond-Suffolk Academy with essay “Let Fireflies Lighten Our World.” These two and Haddad will move on to the international competition.
An awards ceremony was held in March with about 100 people in attendance. Mayor Linda T. Johnson presented the awards.