Walk into the 2014 International Children's Art Exhibit and you'll travel the world through the eyes of young artists.
"I kind of just did this because it showed me with my family and it brings back some very good memories."
"Food For Thought" is a collection of 120 selected drawings and paintings created by students throughout Fairfield County, the United States and 22 countries throughout the world, through Creative Connections' ArtLink program. The gallery's opening reception Thursday night brought together local dignitaries and teachers from near and far to honor several students, whose work is now displayed at Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk.
"We have a lot of focus right now on STEM education, science, technology, engineering and mathematics, which is great," said Rep. Gail Lavielle (R-Norwalk, Wilton). "But you don't really get something wonderful unless you combine technical skills with creativity."
Creative Connections, is a Norwalk-based nonprofit international cultural education organization, which engages and connects 100,000 students in 60 countries from 3rd through 12th grade in through art. It's the sixth year Creative Connections has shown artwork at the maritime aquarium.
"Sometimes you'll be surprised, the work from the eight-year-olds can be very profound and thoughtful," said Creative Connections executive director Christina Rose.
"We exchange the pictures," said Dr. Seiji Fukazawa professor of Hiroshima University in Japan. "By watching, examining, and comparing the artworks, they can see how people in different worlds and different countries see exactly the same thing differently, to think of food in different perspectives."
"We look primarily for the thoughtfulness behind the artwork, not necessarily the technique of the art itself," said Rose. "But each student is challenged to create a piece that illustrates a cultural value that's important to them."
The gallery will remain open to the public at the Maritime Aquarium until September 2nd.