Forty-two young artists representing 10 different South Dakota middle schools and high schools have been recognized as Gold Key, Silver Key and Honorable Mention winners.

They will be recognized at a ceremony to be held Sunday, March 1, 2015, at 1 p.m. in the Knutson Theatre in the Warren M. Lee Center for the Fine Art on the USD campus. A reception for the artists will begin at noon in the Center’s Gallery 110. Gold Key winning art will be displayed in the gallery.

Guest speakers at the event include Dr. Larry Schou, Dean, USD College of Fine Arts; Virginia McEnerney, Executive Director of the Alliance for Young Artists and Writers; Professor John Banasiak, USD Art Department; and Carol Geu, representing the University of South Dakota as the South Dakota affiliate of the sponsoring national art organization. Professor Banasiak is a former Gold Key winner.

The Alliance for Young Artists and Writers is the national sponsor of regional and national competitions. Categories of art includes painting, sculpture, illustration, photography, mixed media, digital art, drawing, printmaking, ceramics, film and animation, and comic art. Gold Key winning artists will participate in the national competition, held in June in New York City, competing with the winners from 100 regional competitions from around the country.

Started in 1923, the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards is the nation’s longest-running and most important recognition program for creative students in grades 7 – 12. This is the first year for this regional competition and event in South Dakota, and it is sponsored by the Department of Art at the University of South Dakota.

To learn more about the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, visit the Scholastic Media Room online at A complete list of 2015 regional Scholastic Art & Writing Award winners is available online at

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