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Last week to see Student Juried Art Exhibit in Shelby County

Sandra Annonio / Student Juried Art Show

An Alabama art gallery aims to shine a light on young artists across the state. The Shelby County Arts Council is partnering with the University of Alabama at Birmingham and the University of Montevallo to host its twelfth annual Student Juried Art Exhibit.

Sandra Annonio / Student Juried Art Show 2022

The exhibit aims to highlight artists across the state from 10th to 12th grade and showcase their skills alongside experienced professionals and hobbyists. Bruce Andrews is the executive director of the Shelby County Arts Council. He said the purpose of the gallery is to provide a platform for young artists throughout the state. “It costs them nothing to enter. So, I will stop and say that those who are familiar with adjudicated art shows, professional artists and serious hobbyists and the like, know that those things usually cost money to enter. These shows do not cost money,” he explained.

Winner of the Student Juried Art Show 2022
Sandra Annonio / Student Juried Art Show 2022
Winner of the Student Juried Art Show 2022

Only 10-15% of the submissions were selected to be in this year’s gallery. Andrews estimated there were over 500 submissions for this year’s contest coming from 20-27 different schools across the state. “Anybody who gets in the show is, I'm not even using this as a cliche, they're already winners because they have been selected,” he explained. “Those were the top 15% as those judges saw it.”

Selected artists have their work featured at the EBSCO Fine Art Gallery alongside work from professional artists and seasoned hobbyists throughout Alabama. The gallery is attached to the Shelby County Arts Council building in Columbiana. The featured art includes paintings, sculpture, photography, and digital art among others. “I'm always pleasantly surprised that we see, everything ranging from what you consider to be traditional high art or renaissance influence to impressionists and very modern hybrid approaches.” Andrews said.

The last day the student artwork will be displayed is Sunday, April 23rd. There will be a closing ceremony where the artists are gathered and awards are handed out for each category of art featured. Andrews added that there will be a “Best in Show” award, which spans every category and includes a $500 dollar prize. ”We'll give the judges an opportunity to speak with students,” said Andrews. “I'll speak to them, try to encourage them as artists, and then they'll give them their awards.”

Andrews encourages the public to visit the gallery to show their support for young artists. The EBSCO Fine Art Gallery is open Monday-Thursday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free.

Winning art work from the Student Juried Art Show 2022.
Student Juried Art Show 2022
Winning art work from the Student Juried Art Show 2022.

Alex Pfenenger is a student intern in the Alabama Public Radio newsroom. He is a senior at the University of Alabama studying Creative Media. He has a passion for creating audio content, which lead him to podcasting and radio work. In his free time, Alex enjoys watching sports, listening to music, and serving at the local church.
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