Students Recognized for Creative Excellence

Seventeen Masters students are the proud recipients of 2022 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. The accolades, presented by the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, celebrate the students’ depth and range of artistic and literary talents.

Students won 25 art awards in the East Art Region-at-Large and 17 top writing prizes in the Hudson-to-Housatonic Writing Region. Entries were judged by experts in their respective fields and based on originality, technical skill, and the emergence of personal voice or vision. The recipients will attend virtual award ceremonies in March. 

Senior Chris Shim received eight awards for his paintings. Sophomore scribe Chloe Basch walked away with seven. Also of note are two juniors who placed in both the writing and art competitions: Amaris Asiedu ’23, for Science Fiction & Fantasy and Painting, and Maddy Israel ’23, for Personal Essay & Memoir and Photography. 

Shim called the recognition “a huge honor” and credited Cheryl Hajjar, chair of the visual arts department, with inspiring him “to examine different concepts and make my artwork more interesting every day.” His favorite work is “The Things They See.” Shim explained that it “reflects an innocent curiosity I’ve had ever since I was young, exploring the other side of reality.”

For Basch, “to be acknowledged for these specific pieces is meaningful to me for different reasons,” because writing is “the way I can express myself and share how I view the world.” Her essay “Even Though Nobody Asked” chronicled her journey of taking a stand as a young student. “In this piece, I strive to acknowledge the balance between finding one’s moral voice despite peer pressure and taking action even if it upsets the status quo,” she said.

Gold Key recipients Shim and Basch along with August Liu ’23, Ellie Yang ’23 and Finn Alexander ’22, are automatically considered for national awards, which will be announced on March 23. 

Art
Amaris Asiedu ’23: Honorable Mention (Painting: “Nsakrae”)
Maddy Israel ’23: Honorable Mention (Photography: “Portal to Another World”); Silver Key (Photography: “Life Through a Mirror;” “Colors in the Wind;” “Lost Childhood”)
August Liu ’23: Gold Key (Photography: “Horse”)
Phoebe Radke ’22: Silver Key (Digital Art: “Not Seen, Not Heard”); Honorable Mention (Architecture & Industrial Design: “When Architects Dream, Where Do They Go”); Honorable Mention (Sculpture: “Figure Study #1”); Silver Key (Digital Art: “12,000 Child Brides;” “A Bed of Spikes”)
Eleanor Schalkwyk ’24: Silver Key (Painting: “Daydreamer”)
Chris Shim ’22: Gold Key: (Painting: “Building Blocks of Love and Hope;” “The Woman in Orange”); Silver Key: (Painting: “Memories;” “The Things They See;” “A Christmas Pandemic;” “Buglasses;” “King of Beasts”); Silver Key: (Art Portfolio: “Their Story”)
Katherine Stein ’22: Honorable Mention (Photography: “Flower”)
Ellie Yang ’23: Gold Key (Painting: “Limbo;” “Linner”)
Tim Yang ’23: Silver Key (Photography: “Infinite Waiting;” “Confrontation”)

Writing
Finn Alexander ’22: Gold Key (Poetry: “The Smoke Moved Strange in Saratoga”)
Amaris Asiedu ’23: Honorable Mention (Science Fiction & Fantasy: “Apathy”)
Chloe Basch ’24: Gold Key (Poetry: “The House on 87th Street”); Silver Key (Journalism: “Poverty in the Hamptons”); Silver Key (Poetry: “A Tangerine By Any Other Name Would Be As Sweet Or Sour: My Namesake”); Honorable Mention (Personal Essay & Memoir: “Even Though Nobody Asked”); Honorable Mention (Poetry: “Moroccan Roots;” “Snow-capped;” “Temptation: aunt jessi’s suicide”)
Marianna Gu ’23: Honorable Mention (Personal Essay & Memoir: “A Vanilla Ice Cream”)
Maddy Israel ’23: Silver Key (Personal Essay & Memoir: “My Grandfather's Story”)
L. Leys ’22: Honorable Mention (Poetry: “The Ecstasy of Devouring”)
Jinyu (Sandra) Liu ’23: Honorable Mention (Critical Essay: “The Road to Free Women”)
Kira Ratan ’22: Silver Key (Journalism: “A hard rain’s a-gonna fall;” “Martha’s Vineyard: Local businesses adapt to the pandemic”)
Esme Talenfeld ’23: Silver Key (Poetry: “I Am Your Sun. I Am Your Son.”)
Mengyuan (Zara) Zheng ’23: Silver Key (Dramatic Script: “Masks of Corruption”)