Local teens envision peace for anti-bullying art project

From the press release:

Students in grades 5-8 at ArtSpace Charter School were presented with a challenge: create a work of two-dimensional visual art that responds to the question, “what will peace look like in our community?” This is part of an ongoing bully-prevention initiative that emphasizes community building, peace promotion and kindness. Our mission at ArtSpace has been to shift the focus from the negative, what NOT to do, to the positive as it relates to treating others with acceptance and respect. As with everything we do, we have used the arts as a vehicle for promoting this message.

Students were educated about Pop Art and were encouraged to utilize this style in their work. Participation was optional and students created their pieces on their own time outside of school. All entries were judged according to three primary criteria: expression of theme, technical skill and aesthetic sense. We also considered originality and incorporation of Pop Art techniques. Judging began with a group of ArtSpace staff members, who narrowed the selections down to 8 finalists. Those 8 works were then brought to Kitty Love, Executive Director of the Asheville Area Arts Council, who narrowed the selections down to 4. Those 4 works were then brought to local artist, Galen Frost Bernard who ranked them in 1st, 2nd and 3rd places (3rd place resulting in a tie).

The top 4 entries received cash prizes. The top entry also received a gift certificate to Asheville Art Supply (generously donated to our school). Posters will be made out of the top two entries and will hang in the middle school wing of our school, incorporating our bully prevention expectations (adapted from the Olweus Bully Prevention Program).

All entries are currently hanging in our school gallery through the month of March. The four finalists will also be hung at The Artery—Asheville Area Arts Council, 346 Depot Street—from March 26-April 6. An celebratory event is being planned.

All students who participated in this challenge will be taken on a field trip to visit the River Arts District of Asheville on March 29. They will learn about the history of the area, meet some local artists and tour some studios and galleries


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