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Flourish by Lisa Su (Colored pencil shavings, colored pencil lead, newspaper, coffee grounds)

Let’s face it: Artists and writers see the world a little differently. And it’s not just their keen powers of observation at work—their vision is coupled with a wild and sometimes unpredictable imagination. For artist Lisa Su, her work becomes a celebration of the ordinary that at once elevates and transforms it.

“We often overlook the value in everyday objects,” Lisa explains. By repurposing materials such as pencil shavings, eggshells and coffee filters, she says, “my work brings out the aesthetic qualities hidden within…so that they can transcend their original purpose, creating unique textures and atmospheres seemingly from another world.”

Emma Hastings admits that she feels very close the characters that emerge from her imagination, and that they feel very real to her. As she writes, in fact, they possess uncanny power:   “There was a moment in writing…these stories that one of the characters decided to change course and break from my plans, or bring up something pivotal that I hadn’t thought of before.” Sometimes, she adds, “it was a shock to see what they had in their heads.”

Here, we offer a glimpse of Lisa’s world view and the very real fictional characters that people Emma’s creative mind. To see and read more, visit www.artandwriting.org/galleries. Read More

Silent Messenger ~ Raven- Wyoming black granite ~ 12Óh x 60Ów x 30Ód Sarcophagus- Colorado red sandstone ~ 14Óh x 70Ów x 40Ód Collection of National Museum of Wildlife Art

Silent Messenger. Raven- Wyoming black granite, Sarcophagus- Colorado red sandstone. Collection of National Museum of Wildlife Art, photo via stevekestrel.com

Can art change the world? Artist Steve Kestrel, who works with found stone in Northern Colorado, certainly hopes so. For his sculpture, Silent Messenger, Kestrel sculpted a six-foot long sarcophagus from Colorado sandstone and placed a giant black granite raven, lying on its back, within it. Currently on view at Wyoming’s National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson, it sends a chilling message.

“I usually celebrate the earth’s flora and fauna in my work,” Kestrel explains. But this time he wanted to pose a challenge: “In the next century, will our societies and artists celebrate the remaining wildlife or mourn their passing?”

Wyoming writer Cate Cabot thought that this sculpture held a potent message not just for adults, but for students throughout Wyoming, so she designed The Messenger: Silent No More Project. This spring the project began with field trips to see Silent Messenger that carried back to their classrooms. Read More

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The 2013 Class of National Student Poets (from the left: Nathan Cummings; Louis Lafair; Michaela Coplen; Sojourner Ahebee; Aline Dolinh) enjoy their time in New York City for the 2014 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards National Events.

We are still reeling from a dynamic and rich Scholastic Art & Writing Awards National Events week in New York City! During the Events, the 2013 Class of National Student Poets led workshops with third and fourth graders at Harlem Academy, walked across Carnegie Hall’s legendary stage and presented their community service projects with passion at the Saturday Student Showcase at the Art.Write.Now.2014 National Exhibition, which took place at the Sheila C. Johnson Design Center at Parsons the New School for Design and Pratt Manhattan Gallery.  These exhibitions featured over 1,000 visual and literary award-winning works from students in grades 7 through 12. This week, the National Student Poets will join other accomplished youth poets at the Aspen Ideas Festival in Aspen, CO! Read More

Banner_artThis summer, we want YOU to get creative and a head start on the 2015 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards! Registration for the 2015 Awards opens on September 15, 2014. Get a head start with workshops, summer challenges, an alumni video series and the opportunity for you to share your voice with us!

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The Art.Write.Now.2014 National Exhibition at Pratt Institute’s Pratt Manhattan Gallery.

On June 11, writers and an appreciative audience gathered for Words and Lines: a free reading amid 2014 National Medalist artwork at the Pratt Manhattan Gallery. It was an evening that paid tribute to the Awards’ three criteria: originality, technical skill, and clear evidence of personal voices and visions!

The program featured award-winning author and  director of Pratt Institute’s Writing Program Thad Ziolkowski;  Past Portfolio Gold Medalists Lashanda Anakwah, Haris Durrani, and Emma Goldberg. The editor of The Best Teen Writing of 2014 , 2004 Portfolio Gold Medalist and fantasy author Hannah Jones served as emcee and even shared some of her work with the crowd!

Poetry and prose echoed throughout the Pratt Manhattan Gallery’s exclusive exhibit of 2014 Scholastic Art & Writing Award-winning photography, ceramics and glass…and we know that as you read this, you wish you were there. Two of the readers, Lashanda and Emma, graciously agreed to share excerpts of their work.  Read More

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The eight Writing Portfolio Gold Medalists with alum Hannah Jones

This post originally appeared on Scholastic’s On Our Minds blog. By Brittany Sullivan.

The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards Carnegie Hall award ceremony is just two days away! Last week, we took a closer look at this year’s outstanding eight Portfolio Gold Medal artists, who, in addition to winning $10,000 scholarships, are well on their way to following in the footsteps of famous Scholastic Awards alumni such as Andy Warhol, Philip Pearlstein and Zac Posen.

Before the National Celebrations begin in New York City tomorrow, let us introduce you to the talented eight Portfolio Gold Medal writers of the 2014 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. These storytellers captivated regional and national judges with their wild imaginations and powerful emotions – communicated through short stories, poems and memoirs. We can’t wait to meet them here in New York City! Read More