Year 9 student wins coveted COBIS International Art Prize

Sasha Iarmak, currently in Year 9 at St George’s, has won first place in the upper age category of the 2018 COBIS Art Competition. Her artwork, Our Oceans In A Changing Climate, captured the attention of judges to see her claim the top prize against 600 students from 100 schools worldwide.    

Sasha is a regular member of Art Department’s ‘A Team’. This is a group of particularly able and enthusiastic Key Stage 3 artists at St George’s who meet in room F1 after school each Wednesday to develop new creative work beyond their regular class projects.

How did Sasha develop her award-winning piece, and what does it represent?

 “I tried to put many small, meaningful details into this piece. I began by drawing a human, but instead of a brain, I filled the humans head with the ocean, representing that we are one, that we strongly rely on water supply and have to take care of this supply just like we take care of ourselves.”

“Then I decided to fill in the ocean with wild range of aquatic habitants. I also drew an iceberg floating on top, melting down, reflecting the suffering caused by global warming. Her eyes are closed, representing the blindness of human beings to the environment around them. The human can be seen holding a hair dryer in the same way that she would hold a gun. The wire of the hair dryer is strangling the human much like man-made inventions can harm us.”

“Her other hand is on her head as if she is trying to shake off the pain but its only making everything worse. I drew almost a halo around her head, but, if examined closely, it composes a circle of factory buildings releasing waste in the air - causing pollution which further contributes to global warming. Around the buildings there are rays of heat and swirling toxins, illustrating that if we don’t intervene, the blue beautiful sky will change to clouds of dangerous gases.”

“I drew the wide night sky and the reflection of it on the sea. This represents how we are set in a unique environment in the universe and that humans might need to step back and reflect on changes they brought to the world, that we have to find the true reason behind our existence and that the ocean can hold many answers. Our ocean was here billions of years ago and can sustain us and the other systems and creatures of our planet if we do not overwhelm it through careless or selfish actions.”

Congratulations to Sasha on her fantastic achievement.

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