Pentel of America Announces Award Winner of International Children's Art Competition

Mar 06, 2009, 11:07 ET from Pentel of America

Eleven-year-old From Southern California Wins Highest Award Outside Japan

TORRANCE, Calif., March 6 /PRNewswire/ -- Pentel of America is proud to announce Odel Zadeh, age 11, of Chatsworth, California (photo:, as the winner of the 39th Pentel International Children's Art Exhibition (ICAE) Foreign Ministry Award. The Foreign Ministry Award is the highest award given to an entrant outside of Japan.

Founded by Pentel in 1970 in Osaka, Japan, the ICAE encourages the vivid imagination of children. The ICAE annually evaluates more than 70,000 entries, representing 38 different countries and territories around the world. As the highest award an individual can receive from overseas, Odel is now in the elite company of nine other children, worldwide, to receive such a title.

Artwork is judged on the basis of originality, clearly expressed content and cultural expression. Representatives from Biiku Bunka Kyokai (the Foundation of Art Education in Japan), art professors and teachers from various countries comprise the distinguished panel of judges. It takes the panel roughly four months to determine the winners.

Maria Galloway, Odel's art teacher at the Mission Renaissance Art Studio in Encino, California, was confident that Odel's entry was a winner. "She is an infectious, bubbly little girl, who thought for weeks about what she wanted to create for Pentel. She had the vision, and her art expresses exactly who she is - loving, imaginative, and happy." The winning painting (photo: is called "Heartman" and creatively depicts a person whose face is heart-shaped.

"We're excited that an entrant from the United States was the recipient of this prestigious award. Odel represents the vision Pentel has for young children by combining education, imagination, and creativity," said Marty Furman, COO of Pentel of America.

Odel has been taking art instruction at Mission Renaissance since 2006. "Our students look forward to this exhibition each and every year," Galloway continues. "We are thrilled to be a part of the Pentel ICAE and grateful to have one of our students recognized."

Each year, several exhibitions consisting of thousands of multi-national, award-winning pieces are assembled to tour around the world. In previous years, award-winning pieces toured Japan, Ireland, the United Kingdom, the Russian Federation, the United States, Mexico, Costa Rica, Venezuela, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore. For more information about the Pentel ICAE go to and click on "Events/Promotions".


Pentel of America is the United States operation of Pentel Co. Ltd, a privately owned, Japanese company which has been producing the world's favorite writing instruments for over half a century. Responsible for the development of ideas behind two-thirds of the writing instruments in use around the world today, Pentel is known for innovation. From the world's first acrylic fiber tipped pen, to the high quality arts and crafts supplies of Pentel Arts, to the eco-friendly writing instruments comprising the Pentel Recycology line, Pentel is committed to quality and design. With offices throughout the world, the Pentel of America headquarters is located in Torrance, California. For more information about Pentel of America and the Pentel products, visit our web site at

SOURCE Pentel of America