A new arts contest hosted by The William Winter Institute for Racial Reconciliation invites Mississippi students to reflect on the challenges of 2020 and early 2021 and envision the future for their state and country. The Community of the Future Creatives Showcase encourages middle and high school students to submit writing, visual art or performance pieces with themes of resilience and equity.
Cash prizes up to $200 will be awarded to first and second place winners in two categories, with five honorable mentions in each. The online submission deadline is Friday, March 12.
“With the coronavirus pandemic and the tragic deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and others, as well as a new state flag and new national leadership, our communities have experienced a period of rapid and intense change,” said Von Gordon, youth engagement manager for the Winter Institute. “It’s important to stop and reflect on what we can learn from the past year, and what we imagine for Mississippi and our nation going forward.”
The Showcase invites submissions in two categories. In the writing category, formats may include but are not limited to essays, poetry and short fiction. In the visual or performance art category, formats may include but are not limited to drawing, painting, photography, dance, spoken word and theater.
The Winter Institute will highlight student art submissions on its online platforms, as well as during a virtual showcase event on April 10 where the awards will be publicly announced. First and second place winners in each category will be invited to read or perform their work at the virtual event, or have it performed by others. Students may submit multiple entries, though they may place in only one category.
“We are seeking thoughtful work that acknowledges the very real challenges of 2020 and early 2021 while also turning a hopeful eye toward healing and positive change,” said Gordon. “We’re looking forward to seeing how young Mississippians express their experiences and ideas through writing and art.”
Learn more about the Community of the Future Creatives Showcase and submit entries at winterinstitute.org/future. Email questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.