“Snow Squall”

“Snow Squall” by artist Rob Mullen.

This October the Highland Center for the Arts in Greensboro will exhibit art by more than a half dozen of North America's most renowned wildlife artists. In conjunction with that exhibit, the Vermont Wildlife Coalition Education Fund is offering $2,500 in prizes to students in grades 7-12 who submit their own works of art depicting Vermont wildlife.

First prize is $1,000, second is $750, third is $500 and fourth prize is $250. Student winners will have their work displayed along with the work of the nationally recognized artists.

Participating artists include Jean Louis Courteau, Cole Johnson, Rob Mullin, Patricia Pepin, John Pitcher, Sue Westin, John Potter and Bonnie Rowell.

Many of the works by these renowned artists on display at the Highland Center will be plein air paintings. Plein air painting is about leaving the studio and getting outdoors to experience the wildlife and landscapes.

In this case the artists are all engaged in an expedition to sail the length of Lake Champlain and to paint scenes of wildlife and wildlife habitat on and around Lake Champlain. The lake is one of Vermont’s most precious natural resources.

The artists hope to support and to bring greater public attention to the importance of this priceless resource and the wildlife it supports. The art produced on the expedition will be sold to help support the work of the Vermont Wildlife Coalition’s education fund.

The fund is intended to encourage young Vermonters to get outside and to enjoy and appreciate the beauty of Vermont’s landscapes, lakes, rivers and streams and, in particular, Vermont’s wildlife and wildlife habitat. The hope is that by encouraging students to recreate those scenes through art, others will likewise be able to share and appreciate Vermont's natural resources.

The artists will be joined at the Highland Center for the Arts Sunday, Oct. 17, in a concert by musicians Tish Hinojosa from Austin; Dave Mallett, one of New England’s native sons and a nationally renowned singer and songwriter; as well as Mallett’s sons Luke and Will Mallett, who have become one of our countries most popular new indie folk and country bands.

More information about the student art competition can be found at vtwildlifecoalition.org/artcontest.

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