ANDERSON — A shortage of funds, canceled classes and a predicted snowstorm couldn’t stop it.
The Art Association of Madison County’s 15th annual Student Art Exhibit opened — narrowly — without a hitch March 2.
Almost 150 high school students’ 258 pieces of artwork are displayed at the art show in Mounds Mall until Friday.
The exhibit opened with awards, where Anderson High School junior Courtney Simpson won Best of Show with her “Morning Toast” painting. The artwork depicted a piece of toast with a silver spoon and metal pitcher.
“I think, as an artist, you know for one, how hard it is to do metal, and also to get the reflection,” exhibit co-coordinator Theresa Lucas said. “She nailed it perfectly.”
Lucas said it was Simpson’s first time in the art show, and only a few first-timers have ever won Best in Show. Simpson also won first place in painting with her piece “Avocado.”
The Art Association gave more than 50 awards in seven categories: painting, drawing, ceramics, sculpture, jewelry, photography and multimedia.
Debriana Love got first in ceramics, Madeline Harris placed first in drawing, Sarah Dixon received first in jewelry, Abby Manwell got first in multimedia, Karley Fridley got first in photography and Brandon Burkett received first in sculpture.
Kara Hampton, who won Best of Show in 2009 and 2011 and is the only student to win twice, judged the exhibit.
After initially scrambling for funds, the Art Association was able to give away about $1,700 in prizes. The organization didn’t receive a grant like it has in years past to help pay for prizes and other costs for the show, causing organizers to wonder if they would be able to have the exhibit.
Lucas said that up until Feb. 27, three days before opening day, she worried if they’d have enough prize money. Money from organizations and private donors flooded in at the last minute.