Scholastic writing, art winners’ work on display

  • By C.R. Nelson
    For the Observer-Reporter
February 26, 2014
C.R. Nelson/For the Observer-Reporter Artbeat Gallery co-owner Jim Winegar gets ready to put on the finishing touches to the Scholastic Art and Writing Gold Key display that will hang until March 14. The public is invited to an opening reception from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday. It will feature Gold Key writers reading portions of their winning works.

WAYNESBURG – In Sochi, the Olympic winners got “medaled.” But how about “keyed?” Gold Keyed, that is.

Artbeat Gallery, 52 E. High St. Waynesburg, is showcasing Gold Key and best of show winners of the 2014 Scholastic Arts and Writing Awards of Southwestern Pennsylvania, and is hosting an opening reception to show off the winners’ accomplishments from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday.

Open the gallery door and you’ll be greeted by a fantastically sculpted figure almost seven feet tall by Lyssa Current of Charleroi Area High School.

More sculptures, paintings, drawings, prints, photos and multimedia pieces are waiting inside. Panels down the center of the gallery feature the rest of the Gold Key winners, including choice samples from the poetry, short story and memoir writing competition. These new artists are in good company, surrounded by the work of the more than 60 professionals who display and sell their art and published works at the gallery.

On Friday, student artists will be there to discuss their work and Gold Key writers will read their work, beginning at 7:30 p.m., gallery owner Jim Winegar said.

“The show will hang until March 14 and we also have slideshow presentations of all the work that was submitted this year,” said Winegar.

Winegar is one of a dedicated group of teachers and creative professionals who volunteer months of their time to do what it takes to keep this competition available to middle and senior high school students in Greene, Washington and Fayette counties. The competition originated in Pittsburgh and has been ongoing since 1923. It is America’s longest running, most prestigious recognition program and largest source of scholarships for creative teens. Past winners include Andy Warhol, Sylvia Plath, Truman Capote, Robert Redford, Stephen King and John Updike.

Gold Key and the American Voice and American Vision winners from 100 regional programs send images of their work to be juried at the national level. Those who are chosen are invited to bring their winning work to be exhibited in New York City in the spring where high honors, including scholarships await them.

Gold Key writing recipients are: Sasha Edwards, Washington High School, poetry; Taylor Phillips, Waynesburg Central, science fiction/fantasy; and Paige Smith, McGuffey, memoir.

American Voice nominees are Emily Black, Charleroi, memoir; Sasha Edwards, Washington, poetry; and Emily Mills, Charleroi, memoir.

Gold Key winners in art are Mason Boni, Avella, comic art; Skylar Braga, Waynesburg Central, drawing; Katey Brock, Trinity, drawing, photography, future new; Rhianna Browell, Central Christian Academy, drawing I; Rebecca Brown, Avella Junior High, photography; Kristen Burns Canon-McMillan, drawing; Letitia Cawley, Trinity, future new; and Lyssa Current, Charleroi, fashion, printmaking.

Also, Michaela Fisher, Uniontown, sculpture; Chelsea Hartman, Canon-McMillan, painting; Tyler Johnson, Charleroi, sculpture; Jessica Lee, A.J. McMullen School, photography I; Mackenzie Moore, Beth-Center, photography; Natalie McNett, Carmichaels, drawing; Allison Paxton, Central Christian Academy, painting I; Emily Richard, Fort Cherry, photography I; Roman Spataro, Avella, photography; Emma Traynor, Central Christian Academy, painting I; Harris Wright, Geibel Catholic, ceramics and photography.

American Vision nominees are Joseph Dosky, Canon-McMillan, sculpture; Lyssa Current, Charleroi, sculpture, Cassandra Beresh, Trinity, printmaking; Tyler Johnson, Charleroi, printmaking; and Katherine Burgess, Uniontown, mixed media.



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