Art competitions abound at EG arts center in ’23 Lifestyle

Showcases of local student art, animal portraits, and wild images straight from the imagination’s outer realms will be held at the Elk Grove Fine Arts Center (9683 Elk Grove-Florn Road) in early 2023.

In February, the center will host its first competition for artwork by high school students from across the Elk Grove Unified School District (EGUSD).

“It’s really exciting, in years past, the arts center has sponsored an individual high school show – this year, we were approached by the district to provide a districtwide competition,” said Darrci Robertson, the arts center’s gallery manager and curator. “The whole process is to teach the students how to apply for art competitions.”

She noted that students do not have to be enrolled in art classes in order to compete at the show. Students can express themselves in different mediums such as painting, drawing, ceramics, and digital art. Robertson said that her staff hopes that the district show will be an annual event.

“We would like to see art that challenges the traditional artistic expression, surprises us to make us think, and articulates emotions in new and exciting ways,” the competition’s prospectus stated.

The student art show will last from Feb. 4-23, and will be judged by Marcelle Wiggins, a Sacramento artist who teaches drawing and color theory classes at Cosumnes River College. Robertson mentioned there are plans to have a show for EGUSD teachers in April. She said that retired teachers can also apply to be in the competition.

Also coming this winter is the January show, “Fanciful Visions,” which challenged local artists to create surreal and dreamlike imagery. Robertson said this new competition expands from an abstract art show that was held earlier this year.

“We felt we needed to expand the show criteria to include dreamy concepts, and the fantastical, magical, and macabre,” she said.

Local artist Dwight Head will judge the Fanciful Visions show, which will be held from Jan. 7-26. Winners will be announced at its Jan. 7 reception. The winners will receive cash prizes of up to $100.

All Creatures Great and Small will return to the arts center in March. This is a popular, annual show that’s dedicated to the Animal Kingdom, and will last from March 4-23.

Aside from the art competitions, the arts center will still host a solo show this winter. Gerald Barnes, a self-taught artist who works with a variety of materials such as acrylics, pastels and pencils, will have his “mixed media portraiture” at the arts center, Feb. 4-23.

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