By Ali Nicole

The Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art is calling on student artists, grades K-12, to submit artwork to their 2020 Student Art Show. The artwork will be displayed in an exhibit; a chance for local, young artists to showcase their work. The show is open to all K-12 students on Delmarva from public and private institutions, as well as homeschooled. The non-competitive and creative display is an exciting opportunity for the Delmarva community to celebrate youth art.

The theme of this year’s show is “Living Patterns” based around the naturally found patterns all around us. Students should submit artwork inspired by nature’s patterns, which may include stripes, spirals, and symmetry. The type of artwork submitted can be in a wide array of media, from drawing to sculpture, poetry to photography, and more. Aurelio Giannitti, education director, emphasizes that there is a broad range of media accepted for the show and that future entrants are welcome to consider a variety of alternative forms of media for their submissions. For those who need inspirations, The Ward Museum’s website provides a living patterns guide to help you get started.

Those interested in submitting artwork should note that there are a number of requirements for submissions. An entry form must be filled out — found on the museum’s website — and the artist’s name should be somewhere on the work. Some other requirements include; a list of name, age/grade, and school on the back of the submission; matting specifications; and specific size maximums for different types of media. Follow up on the museum’s website or contact the museum to ensure your work is within the required parameters.

The Ward Museum will be accepting submissions between now and Feb. 14. Based on previous years’ numbers, around 300 entries into the show can be expected. According to Giannitti, submissions come from all across Delmarva, some all the way from Western Maryland. The artwork will go on display on Feb. 21, and remain in the museum’s rotating galleries through May 10. A reception will be held on Feb. 21 from 5-7 p.m. as an opportunity for the public to celebrate youth art and for the young artists to experience an exhibit opening. All community members are welcome to attend to enjoy the art on display, light refreshments, and family-friendly hands-on activities.

Aside from being an opportunity for young artists on the Delmarva Peninsula to see their work on display in a gallery, this may also be a stepping stone.

Giannitti explains that The Ward Museum has reached out to some former Student Art Show entrants for work showcased in other exhibits. Moreover, this art show has the ability to connect art to other passions young people in our community follow.

“What makes the Student Art Show so interesting and powerful,” says Giannitti, “is that the focus of nature opens opportunity for connection between science and art, nature and art. It brings together art and many other interests, getting kids to explore a potential new interest in art.”