Douglas County District Attorney David McDade announced the launch of the 2013 Victims’ Rights Art Contest, an event bringing awareness to the rights of crime victims through the talented work of high-school art students in Douglas County.
The 2013 Victims’ Rights Art Contest coincides with National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, which is being observed throughout the country April 21 through 27. Each year, communities around the nation spend those seven days promoting victims’ rights, and honoring crime victims and those who advocate on their behalf.
The idea of honoring crime victims through art came to mind during a brainstorming session for the 2012 Victims’ Rights Week. The idea became an instant hit with art students across the county. Teenagers from all five high schools submitted pieces of art in the event’s inaugural year. A tie at the top allowed Jack Roper and Virginia Poole, two Chapel Hill High School classmates, a share of first-place bragging rights. Those two students each took home $500, the same amount being awarded to this year’s winner. Participants finishing second and third will be awarded $250 and $100.
Any student attending one of the five local high schools in Douglas County is eligible for entry. Other than being enrolled in the Douglas County School System, a student’s art work must convey their interpretation of victims’ rights or a personal experience as a victim of crime or a family member/friends experience as a victim of crime.
A new addition to this year’s art contest is a photography category. Through a partnership with the Douglas County Sentinel, students can submit a separate art piece in the form of a photograph. The winners will receive a Sentinel prize pack. Each participant in this category is also eligible for one of the top three overall prizes in the contest. Photography submissions should be of the original image taken by the entrant. Photos altered using digital means for artistic and creative effect are welcomed as well.
McDade said his office’s art contest, unlike others, has no guideline requirements for the participant’s artwork or technique.
“When we came up with the contest last year, I decided that a certain shape, size or style should not tie down a student’s imagination,” said McDade. “If a student is taking the time to honor victims with their artwork, then guidelines should not halt their ambitions in making it a reality.”
The only requirement is the deadline. Students are required to submit their artwork to their high school art teacher by Monday, April 15. A registration form must be filled out and attached to their work. Winners will be notified later on that week with a ceremony honoring their artistic achievement taking place during National Crime Victims’ Rights Week.
All the artwork from this year’s contest will be available for public viewing in the second-floor atrium of the Douglas County Courthouse from Thursday, April 18, through Friday, April 26. Pictures of the art collection will also be posted on the Douglas County District Attorney’s Office Facebook page.
The official rules, registration form and information about the 2013 Victims’ Rights Art Contest can be found at the office’s website, www.DouglasCountyDA.org. If you have any further questions, please contact Director of Community Relations Andrew Agan at 770-920-7292.