NEW YORK — More than 660 creative teens from across the country will gather at Carnegie Hall in New York City Thursday evening to be recognized as national recipients of the 2016 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, the country’s longest-running and most prestigious scholarship and recognition program for students in grades 7–12 – administered by the nonprofit Alliance for Young Artists & Writers. Special guests honoring these teen artists and writers include: Alec Baldwin, Billy Collins, Sonia Manzano, Hunter March (Awesomeness TV) and more. Award-winning filmmaker and documentarian Ken Burns, who received a Scholastic Art & Writing Award when he was 17 years old, will be presented with the Alumni Achievement Award.
In addition, students will have their works on display at the Art.Write.Now.2016 National Exhibition. This curated exhibit of the National Medalists’ work will be free and open to the public from June 2-12 at the Sheila C. Johnson Design Center at Parsons School of Design at The New School and Pratt Institute’s Pratt Manhattan Gallery. The exhibit will feature more than 1,000 original visual and literary works. The “Student Showcase,” held on June 3 at the galleries will engage audiences of all ages with student readings, art talks, and film screenings highlighting student work, as well as hands-on art workshops. To view the work, visit http://www.artandwriting.org/galleries.
Virginia McEnerney, Executive Director of the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers said, “It’s a true honor to see the 2016 Scholastic Art & Writing Award recipients walk onto the iconic Carnegie Hall stage and be recognized by their fellow teen creative leaders, families, mentors and educators for their awe-inspiring works of art and writing. The talented teens are the voice of their generation and we are privileged to celebrate them on a national level for their unique vision. I know we are witness to the next Andy Warhol or Sylvia Plath or Ken Burns.”
- 2016 Program Year: A record-breaking 320,000 works of art and writing were submitted for adjudication at the regional level in the Awards’ 29 categories, which include poetry, photography, sculpture, humor, editorial cartoons, video game design and more. 2,500 teens from 50 U.S. states, Washington, D.C., and American schools abroad received national recognition.
- Gold Medal Portfolio recipients: 16 high school seniors received the program’s highest national honor, the Gold Medal Portfolio, which includes a $10,000 scholarship. In total, the Alliance awards more than $250,000 in scholarships annually to top Awards recipients. The Alliance also partners with art institutes, colleges, and universities to earmark scholarships for college-bound Scholastic Awards recipients.
- Notable Alumni: Since the program’s founding in 1923, the Awards have fostered the creativity and talent of millions of students, including renowned alumni who have gone on to become leaders in their fields, including Andy Warhol, Truman Capote, Richard Avedon, Philip Pearlstein, Stephen King, and Sylvia Plath. More recently, Richard Linklater, Zac Posen, and Lena Dunham received Scholastic Art & Writing Awards when they were teens.
- Sponsored Awards: The first-ever Editorial Cartoon category, sponsored by The Herb Block Foundation, celebrates the legacy of four-time Pulitzer Prize–winning political cartoonist Herb Block and his remarkable contribution to American history and free expression with a $1,000 scholarship to 3 teen artists. The Neiman Marcus Awards provide one $1,000 scholarship for outstanding work in Fashion and one $1,000 scholarship for outstanding work in Jewelry. The RBC “Flaunt It” Award, sponsored by the Royal Bank of Canada, is a $1,000 scholarship that celebrates teens’ outstanding work, whether in art or writing, that explores the theme: “The things that make me different, make me, me.” Additional Awards and scholarships for students are made possible through the support of Bloomberg Philanthropies, The New York Times, and the Gedenk Movement.