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“Social distancing” by Mia Murnane. of fourth class St Finnachta’s National School, Sixmilebridge, one of the entrants in the County Clare Kids Art Competition

Finding inspiration in isolation

THE children of Clare are being urged to find inspiration in staying at home and get involved in a countywide art competition being run on social media. The brainchild of Ennis based visual artist Rachel McManus the competition is free to enter and is open to all primary school children.
The Clare Kids Art Competition is already proving popular with the county’s youngsters, with Rachel already wowed by the standard of entries. The theme of the competition is ‘My Life at Home’ with primary school children asked to create a work of art based on this idea.
Rachel explained the inspiration behind the competition, “We are all navigating these unusual times as best as we can. It can be hard for kids not being able to go playgrounds, play with their friends and not being able to play sport or go to their normal activities. Being told they cannot see friends and family feels strange and unfair. It’s easy to get frustrated and worried, but children are resilient and strong and will look back at this time and remember it as a challenge that they all rose to. 
“The Clare Kids Art Competition is to provide all the children in County Clare with an outlet to express themselves right now. Knowing how cathartic the act of drawing and painting can be, we thought an art competition might be a good way to do this. The theme of the competition is ‘My life at home’ and we are hoping kids can use this to express how they are finding their lives at present.
“We are asking children, how does it feel to be at home instead of school? What is good and what is bad about things for you right now? Show us how you are feeling in your picture. The picture can be of anything you like, it does not necessarily have to be a picture of you at home.
“The competition is now up and running and entries are already coming in. We are posting them, with parental permission, to our County Clare Kids Art Competition Facebook page and the standard is already high!”
There are four age categories to enter: Junior and Senior Infants; 1st and 2nd class; 3rd and 4th class; 5th and 6th class. All mediums are accepted, drawings, paintings, collages, pastels and crayons and they can be on paper, canvas or card. The size is from A5 up to A3. The competition is free to enter and is only for primary school age children living in Clare. The closing date is Friday, April 24.

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