Art scholarship recipient sells winning piece

Student-to-student illustration at prestigious arts school


Until May 29, the Bay Area Friends of the Fine Arts Gallery, located at the Gillette House in Sayville, will be hosting the exhibit “Art Grows Here,” conceived and curated by Women Sharing Art, a local organization that has remained dedicated to providing a platform for women to share in their love of different artistic media.

“Art Grows Here” was specifically cultivated for the May exhibit (Women Sharing Art typically exhibits at the BAFFA gallery in February) because of its connection to nature, and nature’s beautiful relationship with art.

“Art Grows Here” is a multimedia group exhibition where artists use images of flowers to express their ideas, feelings, and hopes for the future. 

“Throughout history, artists have seen flowers as a muse to project various meanings and messages. At our happiest and saddest, at our birth and death, flowers have always been by our side,” said Sue Miller, president of Women Sharing Art, adding, “flowers help convey our deepest emotions, signal change, symbolize peace, and celebrate life stages. Perhaps we see a reflection of ourselves in them, full of life and fragile at the same time.”   

Senior high school students were selected for the Women Sharing Art scholarships through the BAFFA high school juried exhibit held in April.

The winners were: Deborah An (Commack High School), Maria Bazilevskaya (Longwood High School), Vivienne Love (Bellport High School), and Giavanna Zavala (Bayport-Blue Point High School)

In addition, Zavala is the first student to ever sell a piece of artwork in a Women Sharing Art exhibit at the BAFFA Gallery.

“Through my artwork, I love to communicate through bright colors. Although all three pieces were different, my use of color is evident all throughout. I let my mind run free and focus in on the beauty within even the most simplistic of things, like limes and coins. Making art to me is about communication and interpretation. Any art piece that I create means something different to each person who sees it,” said Zavala, who will be attending The School of Visual Arts (SVA) in Manhattan.

“[I’ll be] living out my dream to become a commercial illustrator. This opportunity was very greatly appreciated, and I’m very thankful I was able to share my art with others and hopefully put a smile on some people’s faces!,” said Zavala.

The winning and patronized piece featured a neutral color palette, harkening to some 1970s cinema backdrops with an empowering spirit.


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