NEW YORK, March 15, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, the country's oldest and most prestigious awards and recognition program for creative teenagers, today announced the winners of its 2011 competition including sixteen high school seniors who won the Portfolio Gold Award, the highest level of achievement that includes a $10,000 cash scholarship. In addition, 400 graduating seniors who received a national award are eligible for scholarships at more than 60 colleges, universities and art institutes across the country that provide $3.9 million in scholarships annually to help these young artists and writers pay for college. The teachers of top winners were also recognized with cash awards.
Nearly 1,500 of the most talented students in grades 7-12, representing 45 states in the U.S., as well as students in American schools abroad, were chosen to receive national medals. A complete list of winners is available here.
The competition attracted 185,000 submissions in 30 categories including poetry, humor, journalism, novel writing and science fiction as well as painting, sculpture, photography, fashion design, film and animation, and videogame design. The student works were adjudicated first locally and then nationally by panels of judges comprised of renowned artists, authors, educators and arts professionals. The works were judged on originality, technical skill, and the emergence of personal vision or voice.
The nonprofit Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, which administers the Awards, will honor national winners at a special ceremony at the world-famous Carnegie Hall in New York City on May 31. Select award-winning art and writing will be exhibited at the World Financial Center Courtyard Gallery in Lower Manhattan from June 1 – 19. New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg has declared May 31 the official Scholastic Art & Writing Awards Day and the top of the Empire State Building will be lit in gold in honor of the students' achievements.
"The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards provide unprecedented opportunities for the nation's most creative teens through recognition, exhibition, publication and scholarships," said Virginia McEnerney, Executive Director of the Alliance. "Our jurors were drawn from the ranks of the most accomplished artists and writers working in America today. They were blown away by the quality, originality and spirit of the work, and many told us that they came away from the experience feeling optimistic and excited about the future of America's creative leadership."n
Recipients of the 2011 Art Portfolio Gold Award are: Leonardo Laurenceau of Jersey City, NJ; Megan Leal Causton of Northampton, MA; David Vo of Falls Church, VA; Audrey Gair of Miami, FL; Seth Boyden of Fort Wayne, IN; Mason Shefa of North Hollywood, CA and Josh Zucker of Needham, MA. Recipients of the Writing Portfolio Gold Award are: Haris Durrani of Westport, CT; Luke Hodges of Greenville, SC; Victoria Ford of Greenville, SC; Kevin Hong of Natick, MA; Mina Seckin of Brooklyn, NY; Andrea Siso of Houston, TX and Amanda Unger of Bayonne, NJ. The two Photography Portfolio Gold Award recipients are: Lee Heinemann of Kansas City, MO and Amanda Hess of Rochester Hills, MI. Additional monetary awards were provided by Dick Blick Co., New York Life Foundation, Bloomberg, and AMD Foundation.
Distinguished Scholastic Art & Writing Awards alumni include Andy Warhol, Robert Redford, Richard Avedon, Zac Posen, Joyce Carol Oates, Sylvia Plath, John Lithgow, Ned Vizzini, Abdi Farah (winner of the Bravo reality show Work of Art: The Next Great Artist) and esteemed artist John Baldessari, who will accept the Alliance's annual Alumni Achievement Award at the Carnegie Hall Awards Ceremony.
The Alliance for Young Artists & Writers identifies teenagers with exceptional artistic and literary talent and brings their remarkable work to a national audience through the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. The Awards, which have recognized more than 13 million students, continue to be the longest-running, most prestigious program for creative teens and the largest source of scholarships for young artists and writers. The program is generously supported by Scholastic Inc., Maurice R. Robinson Foundation, Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, Command Web Offset, AMD Foundation, The New York Times, Dick Blick Co., Ovation, and New York Life Foundation.
For more information about the Awards visit the media room.