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575 Northern New Jersey Students Announced as 2017 Scholastic Art Award Recipients in Competition Held at the Montclair Art Museum

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MONTCLAIR, NJ - The Montclair Art Museum (MAM) has announced the regional award recipients of the 2017 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards.

Presented by the nonprofit organization the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards are the country’s longest-running and most prestigious scholarship and recognition program for creative students in grades 7–12.

This program year, more than 330,000 works of art and writing were submitted to 118 Affiliate regions across the country. Montclair Art Museum is the sole affiliate sponsor in New Jersey, the ninth year MAM has served in this capacity. The competition at MAM focuses on visual art and its area of service include the counties of Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union, and Warren.

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At MAM, more than 20 jurors—artists, curators, and educators—participated in a series of panels, reviewing over 4,200 submissions from 1,462 students. 575 creative teens from Northern New Jersey received regional honors, including 251 Gold Keys, 305 Silver Keys, and 650 Honorable Mentions, from the Montclair Art Museum.

“The body of work submitted this year demonstrated the outstanding artistic talent in New Jersey,” said Leah Fox, Director of the Vance Wall Art Education Center at MAM. “The Montclair Art Museum is thrilled to once again host the Scholastic Art Award competition as part of the range of programs for teens it offers to enrich their knowledge and practice of arts and culture.”

Awards are issued by artwork, and many students received multiple recognitions. Five works were nominated for an American Visions Medal, which is awarded to only one notable work from each locale.

A reception will be held for all regional winners on Thursday, February 23, 6–9:30 p.m. with remarks taking place at 7:30 p.m.

Each MAM Gold Key Award winner will also display one work in an exhibition from February 23 to March 26, 2017. For Gold Key works of art, the opportunities for recognition will continue when those works are adjudicated again on a national level by a panel of leading creative professionals. National Gold Medalists will be announced in March 2017 and will be honored during a special awards ceremony at the world-famous Carnegie Hall in New York City in June 2017. All National Medal recipients are eligible for a wealth of additional opportunities, such as inclusion in the Art.Write.Now.Tour traveling exhibition.

Since the program’s founding in 1923, the Awards have fostered the creativity and talent of millions of students, including renowned alumni who have gone on to become leaders in their fields, including Andy Warhol, Truman Capote, Richard Avedon, Philip Pearlstein, and Sylvia Plath. “Richard Avedon spoke of his Scholastic Award as ‘the defining moment of my life,’ and we’ve seen this sentiment echoed over the years,” said Virginia McEnerney, Executive Director of the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers. “It continues to be a privilege to bring students’ voices and visions into the world, and to see how they rise up to the occasion of having their creative work taken seriously. The Scholastic Awards program is an incredible source of inspiration for everyone involved, from participating students, to their educators and families, to our alums.”

For a complete listing of regional award winners, please visit montclairartmuseum.org/scholasticartawards.

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