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February 19, 2010
Vol. 51 No. 15

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Student wins art contest

Kelly Kuros, sophomore double major in studio art and creative writing, was announced as the winner of a local art contest on Jan. 24.

According to a university news release, Hillel, the Foundation for Jewish Campus Life, sponsored the art contest to help decorate the new Hillel House on University Avenue.

According to the release, the contest was open to all area residents. Entrants could use any medium on a 12-by-36 inch canvas to depict the theme of 'Creation.'

Rabbi Kate Palley, director of Jewish life, said in the release: "[Entrants] may depict the biblical account of creation, or use their own imaginations. The theme came from the fact that we are creating the Hillel House. 'Creation' can be understood religiously by all faiths, and at the same time, doesn't need to be religious at all."

The contest was judged by Palley, President L. Jay Lemons and Assistant Professor of Art Ann Piper.

Kuros said that Piper notified her art class about the Hillel House contest and encouraged the students to think about entering.

"I figured, 'Why not?'" Kuros said. "I never entered an art competition before and it gave me something to do over winter break."

Kuros said she had never studied art before coming to Susquehanna, but that she was always fascinated by it.

"I thought it would be interesting to take an art class and I fell in love. It was because of Ann that I made it my major," Kuros said.

She continued that competing in the contest included multiple first experiences, such as using a canvas, using acrylic paint and entering a contest. Doing those things for the first time added to her shock upon learning she had won.

"With everyone else that had entered, I couldn't believe I was chosen," Kuros said.
Kuros' painting was of a sunrise with the words, "And God said, 'Let there be light,' and there was light," from Genesis, the first book of the Bible.

She said she drew a grid on the canvas and painted each individual square with different shades of yellow, orange and pink for the sunrise, shades of green for the hillside and shades of purple, blue and gray, for the sky.

"The grid gives it a stained glass window look. I actually took the technique from my friend who had used the grids in a project she did last semester," Kuros said.

Even though her painting won, Kuros said that Piper told her she should remove the words because they took away from the whole piece. Kuros said she trusted Piper and agreed that the painting looked better once the words were removed.

Kuros said that she loved the whole experience. She said when she was buying supplies for the contest, she didn't know which type of paint to use.

"I walked right into the store and asked a woman who worked there to tell me all about paint. The only paint I ever used was Gouache paint which is like water colors," she said.

Kuros was presented with the $100 prize at the open house for the Hillel House, where the university community and general public were invited to view the artwork and enjoy refreshments.


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