Winning Student Masterpieces to Grace Ferndale Business Facades

essentialTOPtempWinning Student Masterpieces gardenfreshADto Grace Ferndale Business Facades

(Crystal A. Proxmire, May 11, 2015)

The work of six high school students will soon be added to the multitude of public art pieces that grace the Ferndale community. The Ferndale Area Chamber teamed up with Ferndale Public Schools and the Downtown Development Authority to host an art contest for sophomores, juniors and seniors at Ferndale High, with art teacher Jerry Lemenu encouraging students to enter.

Over 30 students took part in the contest, including senior Trenton Carson, whose first place royal_serviceswork will be displayed on the building of Level One Bank at Woodward and W. Saratoga. The 1st place artwork for each grade will receive a $500 scholarship to be used for continued education purposes.

Other winners include Owen Zabor, Tiffani Nicole Ray, Chole Walimaa, Emily Bellaver and Espacia Fotiu. The works will be installed on Biggby Coffe on W. Nine Mile, Blumz on E. Nine Mile, Rust Belt Market at W. Nine Mile and Woodward, The Emory on Woodward and E. Troy, and Ferndale City Hall on E. Nine Mile.

The art was scored with a rubric by judges from the community including Chris Best, Sean Rhaesa, Vagner Whitehead, and Kristopher Caster. Sponsors included Hour Media, Jim Sahara ad with wineShaffer/Keller Williams, Paramount Precision Products, Ferndale Downtown Development Authority, Credit Union ONE, Consumers Energy, Garden Fresh Gourmet, and Ferndale Schools.

“Ferndale is already bright and fabulous with artwork by established artist in the community, from the ART Town sculptures to the many murals that we thought the Artist In You project fit our city and elevated the work of our talented young residents and incorporate their fresh voices alongside the other art that makes Ferndale bright and funky,” said Ferndale Area Chamber Chairperson Jay McMillan. “In its inaugural year the “Artist In You” project is part of ART Town: The Exhibit, an outdoor art collection coordinated by the Ferndale DDA. The result is an interesting and growing collection of public art and private art that is available for Judy_Palmer30yearspublic viewing that invites visitors to take a second look and linger longer. The student works will be part of the colorful and prominent works by seasoned artists that includes murals, sculptures, benches, and more, that contribute a vibrant landscape to Ferndale.”

Lemenu loved being part of the Artist in You project. “I am proud of all the students who entered work in this competition,” he said. “The work is wonderful because they are. They have clearly demonstrated the importance of creative expression in their lives, and I’m confident that the public display of the art will evoke a lot of smiles around town. On behalf of the Ferndale High art department and all the teachers, parents, and mentors who encouraged them, I thank the Chamber of Commerce. The scholarship money surely helps but just as important is the dramatic way you have chosen to exhibit student work all over town. Through this action you ctechadhave shown students that their imaginations and the skills they have developed in expressing themselves are highly valued.”

“We have so many talented artists in our community and what better way to support the arts than by showcasing them throughout the streets of Ferndale,” said Pamela Bellaver, supervisor of Oakland County Michigan Works! Ferndale and Ferndale Area Chamber of Commerce Board Secretary. Bellaver was also proud that her daughter’s work was selected by the judge’s panel as one of the winners.

Students and their families were honored with a reception and will be notified when their enlarged art pieces are put up in the coming weeks.

For more info on the Ferndale Area Chamber of Commerce go to

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