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Spring Arbor University student highlights importance of recycling through pieces at ArtPrize 2016

Monday, October 10, 2016   (0 Comments)
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Spring Arbor University senior Clorissa Hadley has her work featured in this year’s ArtPrize. Hadley, known as “Lor” in the art community, is displaying a series of pieces in which she used oil paint, pen drawing or chalk pastels to create abstracted images of recyclable objects. One of the goals for her work is to make her audience more aware of what materials can be recycled, and to promote kinder treatment of the environment.  

“I chose objects based on recognizability,” says Hadley. “I wanted to remind my viewers that they can recycle these things. The objects I chose stick with you because they’re familiar.”

ArtPrize is the world’s largest public international art competition, and is held each year in Grand Rapids, Michigan. It is free and open to the public. The entries are displayed in various locations all across downtown Grand Rapids. Within the first day after Hadley submitted her work ArtPrize, she was offered six contracts from exhibit venues. She ultimately chose to show her pieces at the Waters Building on Ottawa NW. Hadley is competing with 1,453 other artists. The top prize is awarded by public vote, with other prizes awarded by an expert jury.

Hadley took art classes growing up and dual-enrolled in college art courses while attending high school. Now she is a fifth-year senior in the art department at Spring Arbor University. “When I came to SAU, my skills were just very basic,” she says. “It wasn’t until last year that all of the sudden I just exploded and my technique changed, and I became very detail-oriented, but very concept-minded.”

During her time at SAU, Hadley says she has been encouraged to intentionally set time aside for contemplation and solitude. This has led to her spending more time in nature, appreciating the peace and beauty of creation, and discovering a deeper love for the environment: “I think that God calls us to leave our environment fruitful, and it can’t be fruitful if it’s covered in trash.”

Voting has now closed for ArtPrize 2016, but Hadley will be showing her work through October 9. Selections for juried art prizes have begun, but the public prize finalists have yet to be announced. For more information, visit

To watch an interview with Hadley, click here:


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