The Merced County Arts Council hosted its annual High School Art Show reception at the gallery of the Merced Civic Center recently and honored this region’s top student artists with awards.
Curator Janine Echabarne and Merced Arts Center Director Colton Dennis led the awards program.
Here’s a list of this year’s winners:
- Sharon Xiong won Best In Show and Outstanding in Drawing for her piece “#067,” and Outstanding in Painting for her piece “Thiebaud Cages.”
- Adamari Jimenez won Outstanding in Painting for her piece “Going Home.”
- Nayeli Manzon won Outstanding in Drawing for “Doctor’s Appointment.”
- Maricruz Pulido won Outstanding in Three Dimensional Art award for “Tempus.”
- Maria De Jesus Rojas won the Outstanding in Mixed Media award for “Rabbit Land Of Inner Peace And Balance.”
- Madison Gama won the Outstanding in Mixed Media award for “Beautiful Woman.”
- Brenda Zavala won the Outstanding in Digital Illustration award for “Two Bowls Of Khao Sol” and “De las Manos de Mi Abuela #2.”
- Katie Lopez won the Outstanding in Digital Illustration award for “Hidden Gem.”
- Kaitlyn Emanivong won the Outstanding in Digital Illustration award for “Creation Of Crows.”
- Aaron Brewer and Jeraldi Hernandez won the Outstanding in Photography award for their pieces “Flight” and “Gloomy Day” respectively.
- Kimberly Godinez won the Recognition of Art For Social Awareness award for her piece “Las Familias Deben Estar Juntas” (“Families Belong Together”).
- Selah van Volten won the Outstanding in Social Awareness and Artistic Merit award for “Beauty Of Diversity.”
- Savana Munoz won the Outstanding in Social Awareness and Artistic Merit award for “Arrows Of Silence.”
As part of the program, local artist Eddie O. Rodriguez spoke to the collection of young artists who were present at the reception.
“Congratulations to all of the artists who got into the show and the artists who have won — and thank you to all the teachers who have facilitated this,” Rodriguez said. “I know it’s a big feat.”
The artist told the story of his own artistic journey that started in San Francisco before making his way to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates to teach for two years, and then returning stateside in Los Angeles and settling into life in the Central Valley.
“I was amazed by the size of the town and the number of creative people that there are here,” he said, encouraging the students to continue their own journey and letting them know that they are not alone. “If you get incorporated into the art community, you can’t walk a block down Main Street without running into artists.”
The High School Art Show will be on show through April 15 at the Merced Civic Center, 678 West 18th Street, in downtown Merced. The Merced Civic Center is open Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. until noon, and from 1 p.m. until 5 p.m.