Memorial’s artists triumph at statewide art competition

Natalia Mora, Memorial Staff Writer

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  In recent months, Edmond Memorial’s art program has flourished with creativity and taken many opportunities to participate in numerous shows and competitions. After the recent success of Memorial’s Halloween Art Show, results are finally rolling in for the highly anticipated Oklahoma City University (OKCU) annual High School Art Competition, and our Memorial artists brought back outstanding results.

Of 800 pieces submitted statewide, 200 proceeded to finals and six Memorial students were selected to display their collective nine pieces in the show at the Nona Jean Hulsey Gallery in OKCU’s Norick Art Center: seniors Alex England, Bailey Robinson, Emma Bunch, Jonathan Curtis, Karina Cunningham and Zachary Scott.

Additionally, two Memorial students, seniors Alex England and Bailey Robinson, each received $12,000 in scholarship money for their achievements.

“You really have to not just turn in an assignment, but go above and beyond,” art teacher and sponsor Jesse Couturier-Herndon said. “It takes a lot of hard work, nights and weekends to get the best piece.”

Both award-winning seniors were surprised to receive such an honorable nomination, and openly expressed their gratitude towards their supporters.

“It was a shock to me,” England said. “I didn’t expect to win something like that at all.”

England’s submission, “Split Portrait Persona,” is a charcoal drawing dicing snippets from portraits of himself, his dog and Robert Downey Jr. into one unanimous image. He plans on using the scholarship money to pursue a career in art.
Robinson responded similarly, shocked to see three of her masterpieces made the cut in 2017, as opposed to only one submission last year.

Her pieces, “Eyes to the Soul,” “Black and White” and “Lydia” display a wide range of mediums and subject matters, breathing life into her art through a palette of oil paints and colored pencils.

“I want my art to move people and to make them feel things, and I feel like this acknowledgment has shown me that I’m doing what I want to,” Robinson said. “Keep exploring and try new things, because you never know what you can do.”

Other selected artists will be openly displayed in the Hulsey Gallery as well, including Bunch’s “Empathetic” and “Floating,” Curtis’s “Anastasia,” Cunningham’s “Pretty in Pink” and Scott’s “Monet’s Poplars Recreation.”.

“I’m just glad that they can hear it from other professional artists besides just me,” Herndon said. “It’s more about them gaining experience in the art world, and I’m glad to see that they were able to see that they are doing good and could totally do this as a career if they choose to.”

All artwork will be on display at OKCU’s Nona Jean Hulsey Gallery through Nov. 19.


Contact Natalia Mora at [email protected]


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