* 1st Place: Emma Ngo – Get Yourself Together

Artist: Emma Ngo
Title: Get Yourself Together
Media: Ceramics (octopus), water and lighting set up (installation)
Grade: 12th grade
School: Campolindo High School
Teacher: Artwork created independently

“Get Yourself Together” is intended to serve as a chilling reminder of the urgency that oceanic conservation holds. Holding human arms and legs, the octopus almost shakes the viewer to confront our dire circumstances — if our oceans fall, they will bring humanity down with them. I chose the octopus as my subject because octopi are extremely intelligent, soulful creatures, and I carefully sculpted its head to resemble an anatomical human heart, emphasizing the link between humanity and marine life. In presenting the sculpture on such a contrasting background and in water, I hoped to allow the viewer a moment to reflect upon the bleak, black and white nature of our future without conservation.