Pensacola Interstate Fair Art Winners

Nya Arce

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At the start of October, art students submitted their pieces to be judged in the Pensacola Interstate Fair. With many phenomenal works of art up for display, seniors Brooke Rorer and Azmi Atkinson were completely surprised when they found out they were the winners. “I had no idea that I would win. If I’m being honest, I really didn’t like my piece,” Rorer said. Rorer calls herself her harshest critic, and she didn’t think her piece could compare to the other pieces hanging up in the show. Atkinson was proud of her piece, even if she didn’t expect to win anything big, “I was shocked and amazed. I honestly did not believe I’d win such a noteworthy award,” Atkinson said.  

Rorer won first place in painting with her piece “Lady Lemon,” which she worked on over the summer. The painting took Rorer a total three days to complete, despite her attempts to procrastinate. “I’m not going to lie, I put off doing it. I used lots of acrylic paint and tears,” Rorer said. Even though she wasn’t proud of the piece, it earned Rorer her first placement in the fair.  “I was okay with how it looked, and I hated working with acrylic paint until I found my style last year,” Rorer said. “Even now, when I look at it I think of all the things I could’ve done better.”

Over the course of four weeks, Atkinson worked on her piece “Child Diamond,” which won her the John Frenkel award. “It’s a prestigious award given to a single art piece every year,” Atkinson said. This is the sixth year that a Pace student has received the John Frenkel award. Atkinson had no idea that she even won something until a friend texted her the news. “Receiving this award was a complete surprise,” Atkinson said. “I was leaving band practice when my friend texted me a picture of the ribbon on my piece,”  Atkinson added.

As seniors in the art department, this wasn’t the two students’ first time winning awards for one of their pieces. Rorer won first place in the end of the year show at UWF for her collage piece of Ben Stiller, as well as third place in two shows for her acrylic painting of a stack of donuts. Atkinson has won first place in drawing in the past, along with other ribbons from PSC and UWF.