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Thursday, April 7, 2011

2011 Art Contest Awards Luncheon

Thank you to everyone who made our 2011 George Rodrigue Foundation of the Arts Art Contest possible! On Mach 26, 2011, our 16 finalist from across Louisiana came to a special awards luncheon in their honor at the Sheraton Hotel New Orleans.

Every year, GRFA hosts a special art contest where Louisiana High School Juniors and Seniors can win their share of over $45,000 in college scholarships and prizes. This year, George Rodrigue asked students to pick a topic important to them and Louisiana in order to "Speak Out" with their art. In this our largest contest yet, we received 424 entries from 114 cities in Louisiana.

The 16 Finalists were chosen by our first round of judges in both the arts and education fields. Those finalists then were all invited to bring their artwork and their family and art teachers to our luncheon so that our second round of celebrity judges could rank their work accordingly. Our celebrity judges included musician Irvin Mayflied, artist and radio personality Garland Robinette, NOMA Director Emeritus John Bullard.

Our Executive Director, Jacques Rodrigue, served as master of ceremonies and we brought in Sean Hicks, our 2010 Art Contest overall winner, and Paul Leopolous from the THEA Foundation in Arkansas to be our guest speakers.

First, we announced our winner of our Junior Category, Paul Wright from the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts.

Then, we brought up our top three finalists before an exciting announcement of our winner, Savannah Bridges from Rayville, LA complete with a "Big" check presentation and balloon drop!

Again, GRFA extends our appreciation to all of those who made this event possible. Our thanks to sponsors AT&T, Louisiana Public Facilities Authority (LPFA), Louisiana Education Loan Authority (LELA), The Sheraton New Orleans, GRFA Founding Members, first and second round art contest judges, Paul and Linda Leopoulos from the THEA Foundation, the Junior League of New Orleans for their volunteer services, the students of Broadmoor High School under the direction of Laurie Johnson for their ceramic centerpieces, Keith Adams for photography, Bennet Rhodes from Launch Media, and GRFA interns Erin Horton and Mary Anna Brown.

For even more photos from our great day visit our 2011 Art Contest online photo gallery on our website.

1 comment:

  1. Great post! This was such an incredible afternoon.

    Many thanks to the GRFA staff, our interns and volunteers, our generous sponsors and founding members, everyone at the THEA Foundation, the first and second round judges, and the talented students who created our centerpieces and entertained us with music.

    And a special thanks to the more than 400 participants from around the state of Louisiana, as well as your art teachers. We could not get the word out and could not have a contest without you!

    My favorite part of this year was hearing the students share their story, future plans, and source of artistic inspiration with the audience.

    I also loved the balloon-drop! "Next year," half-joked Gus Anderson, "Fireworks!"