African Art

Parker Willis

February is Black History Month, which is part of the reason why Missouri Southern has already had one exhibit on African Art and is also part of the reason behind Southern’s George Washington Carver art and essay contest.

Currently, the African art exhibit is on display in the Spiva Art Gallery, but not for long. Next week the exhibit will be taken down to make room for the art and essay contest entries.

The George Washington Carver art and essay contest will go on display on Feb.18. It will be on display until March 11., even though the awards ceremony will not take place until March 19.

The essays will be evaluated by students in the education department to narrow down the entries, but the final decision about who gets the awards is made by a pre-selected group of judges provided by the George Washington Carver National Monument.

The idea behind letting Southern students read the essays is “to give them the practical experience of actually reading different levels of elementary work,” said Dr. Al Cade, assistant to the dean of education.

The entries will be judged on creativity, legibility, accuracy of details, spelling and the expression of the theme. Every year there is a predetermined theme.

This year, the theme is “unkindness to anything means an injustice done to that thing.” The statement is a quote by Carver.

Those contributing to the exhibit hope to help participants and Southern students alike to “gain some greater understanding of the significance of George Washington Carver’s life,” said Val Christensen, Spiva Art Gallery coordinator.

This is the 15th year of the contest. The entries must meet certain size requirements and the students entering the contest must be in the fourth grade.

The deadline for the entries is Friday.

More information is available by calling the George Washington Carver National Monument at 325-4151 or visiting the park at 5646 Carver Road, five miles west of Diamond.

Cade also said anyone interested in Carver’s work should visit the monument, which is open year round.