Though our announcement of this year’s contest winners is later than usual, the entries speak to that insistent yearning for peace, with ideas for how to make it happen, a commitment to action, and some beautiful art.
Global Exchange is proud to announce the winners of the 2015 What About Peace Contest!
2015 Grand Prize Winner: Baylee Hayes, Flower Power
Congratulations to our 2015 Grand Prize winner, 17-year old Baylee Hayes from Battle Creek, Michigan, whose playful graphic shows two soldiers in sepia tones, in warrior pose, gearing up for a bayonet battle. Baylee transforms the sharp instrument of death into a long stemmed, bright orange Gerber daisy.
Long time activist and artist Glenda says the piece shows the power of transformation, making action fun and meaningful. “Moving beyond traditional symbols like doves, and peace signs Baylee’s piece is a creative challenge to power in a most disarming way.”
First Prize Visual Winner: Jessica Brown, Infinite Peace
In the visual category, first prize goes to Jessica Brown from the Woodlands Texas. The vibrant colors of the sky, lighting up the infinity symbol that is stitched together with flags from around the world, make this a compelling call for peace.
The first prize in the written category is a poem by Ryan Dumas, 18 years old, also from the Woodlands, Texas. The poem, An Unexpected Abundance, is written in a classical form with a clear internal struggle between noise and silence, joy and sadness, freedom and the search for peace in all the choices we make.
Congratulations to our second prize winners too!
In the visual category, we have a collage called Rest in Peace by 15-year old Jane Koll of Winona, Minnesota. In this simple, stark collage she lays to rest nine obstacles to peace: oppression, prejudice, harassment, war etc.
Garret Kevin Walker, of Virginia Beach has written our second prize-winner in the written category with his poem, A Question. “It is a melodic and mesmerizing pyramid of a poem with a tight structure and syncopated beat that builds to an ending where you want more” according to our poetry judge.
Morgan Seeberger’s Spread the Peace took third place in the Visual category, a playful and original graphic that repurposes a box of margarine to spread the word about love, happiness and smiles. “Very original”, remark the judges. She comes from Battle Creek Michigan and is 15 years old.
“Let’s End all Wars”, writes Ethan Walls (16 years) of Harrison, Tennessee. Coming from a military family, he understands personally the sacrifices of war. “If we could all accept that we’ll never rule the world, and just take advantage of the territory we have and leave other people alone, peace will come.” Be a good neighbor he calls out to all of us – individuals and nations.
The judges also had some great things to say about the runners up from both categories. Check out the What About Peace Facebook page for a listing of all our winners in each category as well a listing of our Honorable Mentions and the recipients of the Jurors Awards.
Congratulations once again to the winners and thank you to all for sharing your beautiful work, letting us all know that peace is possible.