Wonderful, Colorful World of Cray-Pas® 2008 Art Contest Appeals to U.S. and Canadian Students

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Over 6,000 U.S. and Canadian kindergarten through eighth grade students entered the thirteenth annual Wonderful, Colorful World of Cray-Pas® 2008 Contest. Nine winners out of one hundred and fifty finalist's artwork. Art teachers present prizes in March to celebrate Youth Art Month. An exhibit reception with art demonstrations along with a children's book illustrator display is scheduled for Feb. 16th, 2008 from 2:00pm to 4:00pm at the Hayward Area Forum of the Arts Sun Gallery in Hayward, CA. The exhibit runs from February 16th to April 25th, 2008. The finalist's artwork will be posted on Sakura's online art gallery at: http://www.sakuraofamerica.com and the winners will be posted on the Oil Pastel Society website: http://www.oilpastelsociety.com.

Over 6,000 entries by U.S. and Canadian kindergarten through eighth grade students were submitted to the thirteenth annual "Wonderful, Colorful World of Cray-Pas® 2008" contest. Art teachers and students eagerly anticipated the results announced today by Sakura Color Products of America, Inc. (Sakura). Art work of one hundred and fifty finalists, highlighting winners and honorable mentions, will be on display at the Hayward Area Forum of the Arts Sun Gallery from February 16th to April 25th, 2007. The finalist's artwork is posted on Sakura's online art gallery at: http://www.sakuraofamerica.com, and on the Oil Pastel Society website: http://www.oilpastelsociety.com.

"The details depicted in the artwork this year are incredible, and truly demonstrates the expressive nature and abilities of children when given the chance to experience art techniques," said Julia Reed, Sakura Cray-Pas contest administrator and marketing manager.

A six member panel consisting of Bay Area art educators and artists judged the artwork for image originality, creativity, emotional content, oil pastel skills and age appropriateness. Three judging levels of artwork were reviewed; Kindergarten - Second, Third - Fifth, and Sixth - Eighth.

The student's art teachers are sent prizes to present to winners in March to celebrate Youth Art Month. World Awareness Children's Museum in Glens Falls, New York will select three hundred to five hundred pieces from the entries for its annual International Youth Art Exchange Program.

First place Winners:

Kindergarten through second grade judging level: Kaiyo W. Shiu, for artwork entitled "Happy Feet".

Third through fifth grade judging level: Victoria Tu, for artwork entitled "Peek-a-Boo Said the Red Eyed Tree Frog".

Six through eighth grade judging level: Chris Chang, for artwork entitled "Aging Love".

The list for all winners, honorable mentions and finalists is attached in a pdf file.

Prizes:
Students awarded first place in each category will receive a $200 savings bond, and a one year membership in the Oil Pastel Society. Teachers and students both will receive a shirt imprinted with the winning artwork, an award certificate, products and gift certificates supplied by participating sponsors, and a generous supply of Sakura art materials and writing instruments.

Sponsors:
Sponsors include Arts & Activities magazine, American Artist magazine, ArtWare by You, The Artist's Magazine, Blick art materials, C Thru, GEEguides Art teaching art, General Pencil Company, Meninger Art Supplies, Michaels The Arts and Crafts Store®, Nasco, Oil Pastel Society, Sax Arts & Crafts, Schoolarts magazine, Silver Brush limited, Star Products, Today's Catholic Teacher, and Triarco® Arts and Crafts, Inc.

Background:
Cray-Pas oil pastels were invented over 82 years ago in Japan to bring a professional-quality art material to children at an affordable price. Cray-Pas is available in three different levels that support an artist from young student to professional levels: Junior Artist®, Expressionist® and Specialist®.

Sakura Color Products of America, Inc. is committed to the development of writing instruments and artistic mediums that empowers individual self-expression, creativity and to enhance communication. The company is headquartered in Hayward, CA. and is the U.S. subsidiary of privately held, Sakura Color Products Corporation of Osaka, Japan. Sakura also manufactures the popular Gelly Roll® gel pen, Pigma® Micron fine-line pens, as well as many other high-quality writing instruments and art materials.
http://www.sakuraofamerica.com

Sun Gallery is a nonprofit visual arts organization supported in part by The City of Hayward Members of Sun Gallery, HARD, Sakura of America, Health Unlimited of America, Wells Fargo Foundation CAC, the Museum Institute, East Bay Foundation, ANG Newspapers and Alameda County Arts Commission.
http://www.sungallery.org

The Oil Pastel Society is an international organization of artists seeking to further the advancement of oil pastels as a fine art medium through the promotion of workshops and competitions. http://www.oilpastelsociety.com

The mission of the World Awareness Children's Museum is to foster knowledge and appreciation of world cultures and is committed to using art conceived through the eyes of children to promote peace and understanding among people of the world. http://www.worldchildrensmuseum.org

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