Although the 2020 conference was cancelled, the board reviewed the entries online and selected our first recipient.
The Inaugural Artaxis Award for Excellence goes to Desmond S. from Sheila Ferri’s 4th grade art class at Horace Mann Lower Division school in the Bronx, New York. The project asked students to create a ceramic portrait jar that incorporated a hat for a lid. Desmond did that and more. Their portrait is fun, playful, whimsical, and made us all smile.
Desmond wrote to us with a statement about this work. They wrote, “I chose to sculpt a pilot because I thought it was an interesting job and could be a creative pot. I specifically was inspired by old pictures and drawings of Amelia Earhart and other pilots of that time period. I thought it was a unique look that could translate well into clay because of some of the more distinct features, like the goggles and hat. I also chose it over some of my other ideas, because it was my strongest vision next to my comparatively weaker other designs.”
Nice work Desmond, and Congratulations! We’re thrilled to give this award to you.
The committee had a difficult time selecting one work from such a strong grouping, that the board would also like to recognize their “Top 5” favorite pieces from this year’s exhibition. In addition to Desmond’s work, our top 5 (in no particular order) are:
“Peacoo-bitt” by Sydney L. in Sharon Kaufman’s 1st grade art class at the Village Center for the Arts in New Milford, Connecticut. Find Sydney’s work HERE.
“Coiled Vase” by Ji Yoon S. in Ursula Fries-Herfort’s 11th grade art class at Kimball Union Academy in Meriden, New Hampshire. Find Ji Yoon’s work HERE.
“Wonderful Breakfast” by Shyla G. in Marina Smelik’s 7th grade art class at Art Academia in San Mateo, California. Find Shyla’s work HERE.
“Woman” Adriana C. in Jerome Dubas’ 12th grade art class at Grand Island High School in Grand Island, Nebraska. Find Adriana’s work HERE
Please join us in congratulating our award winners, all of the K-12 artists, and the K-12 National Ceramic Exhibition organization for their hard work and success in putting together such a fantastic exhibition. Learn more about their fantastic organization at k12clay.org. We’re thrilled to partner with them and look forward to many years of supporting young artists in the field with the Artaxis Award for Excellence.