Image: Forsaken Souls by Erika Leung. Artist statement: During Hitler’s dictatorship, anti-Semitic propaganda and hate speech were used to reduce the Jewish people to a villainous stereotype. My piece represents the identities of innocent people who were forsaken to justify the Nazis' atrocious actions.
The Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education traditionally announces the winners of the annual Sala Kryszek Art & Writing Competition for middle and high school students by Yom Hashoah. However, this year deadlines were extended due to COVID-19 and school closures.
The annual Sala Kryszek Art & Writing Competition encourages youth to evaluate history, foster an awareness of the Holocaust and broaden their minds in the areas of art, history, civics, sociology and literature. For the competition, students are presented with a prompt that becomes their cue to create a piece of writing or a work of art. The prompts are designed to give students the opportunity to consider the circumstances in which a situation like the Holocaust can occur.
The prompt for this year’s contest concluded: “Reflecting on Holocaust history, create a piece of writing or work of visual art that examines how hate speech was expressed, why it was effective at oppressing Jews and other minorities, and its consequences for modern society.”
Following are this year’s winners.
2020 GRAND PRIZES
Samantha Block, Broadcasting Hate: The Power of Symbology and Mass Media
Teacher Rion Roberts, Lincoln High School
Erika Leung, Forsaken Souls
Teacher Anne Larsen, West Sylvan Middle School
WRITING: Middle School
First: McKenzie Wells, Hate Love. Teacher Marcella Strepp, Talmadge Middle School
Second: Eliza Robinson, Hate Speech: The Nazis Secret Weapon. Teacher Holly Walsh, Catlin Gabel
Third: Bryce Gay, Bury Your Words. Teacher Carrington Light, Riverdale Grade School
Honorable Mention: Blaise Stevens, Helpless Thoughts of a Survivor. Teacher Carrington Light, Riverdale Grade School
WRITING: High School
First: Zoe Russell, Hate Thrives in the Dark.
Teacher Pamela Reese, Echo High School
Second: Gabriella Breda, Words. Teacher Danielle Holloway, Lincoln High School
Third: Olive Paternoste, A Clean Slate. Teacher Ailis Kerven, Central Catholic
ART: All Grades
First: Abigail Hamblin, The Elephant in the Room. Teacher Erin Hewitt, Patton Middle School
Second: Yoshigei Diaz Hernandez, Sliver of the Past. Teacher Erin Hewitt, Patton Middle School
Third: Susana Putnam, Deadly Propaganda. Teacher Matt McBeth, Cascade Senior High School
Honorable Mention: Yoshigei Diaz Hernandez, The Attacker. Teacher Carrington Light, Riverdale Grade School