Living Edge Schools Art Competition 2022
- Credit: MJH
The 21st Living Edge Schools Art Competition saw an extraordinary and varied array of entries, the sheer talent of every entrant making the judges’ task almost impossible
We celebrated the return of the Living Edge Schools Art Competition in grand style this year, with a gallery exhibition of all the entries at Collect Art in Lymm: 36 artworks from 13 schools from across the region. This year, as in previous years, the job of judging who should be named winner in each section was incredibly tough, demanding serious debate.
In 2022 the sheer variety of submissions, from 3D to mixed media to pencil drawings to paint made the judges’ task even more challenging, leading us to marvel at the breadth and depth of skill already present in the contestants at such a young age.
The judges – Geoffrey Key, one of the UK’s most collected living artists; sculptor Emma Rodgers, whose work can be found in private collections and public spaces around the globe, our Chair, Martin Heaps, owner of Collect Art in Lymm; and I - prowled amongst the entries, debating the merits of each and marvelling at the quality of the selection.
In the 14 and Under category we were hugely impressed by the piece presented by our winner, Lydia Pellatt, of Cheadle Hulme School, whose painting of an artichoke was considered extremely mature; this young artist is certainly one to watch.
The judges were also impressed by Guiseppe Pezzino, Manchester Grammar School,
and Benji Rawling, of The Grange School, whose sculpture was not only finely constructed, but incredibly well finished.
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In the 16 and Under category we were blown away by our winner Natalie Morris, from Sedbergh School. Her portrait of a man and his dog was simply beautiful.
Highly Commended in this category were Evie James of Altrincham Grammar School for Girls and Mariam Hussain, from Withington Girls’ School, also demonstrated considerable skill in two quite different pieces, both equally arresting.
Finally, the Under 18 category was the perfect summary of where we can expect our younger entrants to go; assured, sophisticated work encompassing a variety of inspirations that challenged and absorbed in equal measure.
The winner, Mia Alexander, of Withington Girls’ School, gave us a portrait of two siblings, showing not only considerable technical skill, but the commencement of a quite unique and absorbing style.
Our Highly Commended entrants, Jemima Howells from Altrincham Grammar School for Girls and Max Cooper, of Cheadle Hulme School, whose portrait of pop icon Prince combined drama with great skill.
It may be that some of these young people pursue a future in art and for others that it may remain an important hobby; whichever path they choose, we both envy their skill and wish them luck for their future.
14 & under
Winner: Lydia Pellatt, Cheadle Hulme School
Guiseppe Pezzano, Manchester Grammar School
Benji Rawling, The Grange School
16 & under
Winner: Natalie Morris, Sedbergh School
Evie James, Altrincham Grammar School for Girls
Mariam Hussain, Withington Girls’ School
18 & under
Winner: Mia Alexander, Withington Girls’ School
Jemima Howells, Altrincham Grammar School for Girls
Max Cooper, Cheadle Hulme School