Elie Wiesel 2020 Student Art Show

Junior Division - R through Z

Arielle Ramirez
Lynnhaven Middle School 
Ms. Griffiths

Through Time; Hard Times 


The Holocaust has had an impact on history and its people. 6 million Jewish lives were lost in this tragedy, and because of this, I have decided to make an art piece called Through Time; Hard Times, which represents the past and present of the Jewish community. On the left side of the painting is a Jewish child wearing the striped blue pajamas as they did in the concentration camps. This represents the past and how the Nazis not only used adults but children for their labor. This shows the cold truth on the Holocaust, and how many children got their childhood taken away from them. On the right side is a present day Jew; this represents how far humanity has come, given that in the past Jews were treated morbidly, and unfairly. This comes to show how these two time stances are very different from each other in regard to the Jews getting their freedom. Overall, the past was hard, but it shaped how strong and faithful the Jewish community is today.

Marieme Reed *Chairs’ Choice - Junior Visual Arts
Virginia Beach Middle School
Ms. Horner

Chains of Tragedy 

My piece, Chains of Tragedy is an acrylic painting that represents how human courage years ago, and in the present, can and has affected our everyday lives. The Holocaust was an infamous and horrid event and it should never be forgotten. During that period in time, millions of men and women lost their lives to this tragedy. I used this piece to explain how we can learn from incidents in the past to make our future better. The two women are the focal point, for women during the Holocaust were undermined and barely got a chance to survive. The woman to the right has gone through many struggles during her lifetime; therefore, she is entangled in chains. To the lower right corner, she is wearing a Star of David armband, which signals that she was a victim of the Holocaust. The chains hang on the woman to the left’s shoulder, symbolizing how we learn from mistakes and tragedies, and how we link the solutions to problems that we may have in the future. The blue light that reflects beautifully off of both women represents a hopeful future, yet there will still be times of sadness and failure. The woman to the left looks forward to face uncertainty. I enjoyed creating this piece because it gave me the opportunity to tell the stories of people who were victims of the Holocaust and people who are soon to face challenges in their lives. I believe that art is a strong medium to tell stories about ourselves and others, and I intend to do that. 


Annie Shuford
Hickory Day School
Mr. Jones



My piece describes the transition the Jewish people were forced to make from their normal lives to life and death inside the camps. The Nazi way became the norm. 

Andrew Smith
Norfolk Collegiate School
Ms. Archer

We’re Human


The goal of my piece is to display a very simple concept that so many can’t seem to understand. Something that all are capable of doing yet so little do. This is the idea that everyone is equal and should be treated as such. Everyone is equal regardless of height, looks, belief, race, or just background in general, which is why my piece doesn’t really have a face or a distinct look. There have been too many events in the past as well as many currently happening, due to people not respecting others and their differences. The Holocaust is one of, if not the most important of all. This is because one person caused so much damage upon one culture and really the entire world, all because he felt that since Jews were different, that they didn’t deserve the same as he did. We are all people. All human. All equal. 

Jenna Stone *2nd Place - Junior Visual Arts
Cape Henry Collegiate School
Mr. Warden

Angels in the Night


In this piece the Stars of David represent the souls of every Jew lost in the Holocaust. I depicted them as stars because shooting stars are what this piece is comparing them to, and the Star of David is the symbol of their religion. The shooting stars represent how the souls are unique and beautiful and that they should have been as free as a star dancing across the night sky. This represents their rightful place in the universe. 

Ava Terry 
Virginia Beach Middle School
Ms. Long

With the World So Set on Tearing Itself Apart


Our society is trying to live on a lack of empathy, kindness, and love. I was inspired by a girl I saw at a Pride parade who had her arms out that read ‘Free Hugs.’ Something as simple as a hug can go a long way for a person, just as showing empathy, kindness, or love goes a long way. The color of empathy is ruby red, which is why the girl’s shirt is red. It is tied in a knot to make the background a wash of rainbow colors, because I wanted each color to symbolize an emotion or positive change. Yellow is happiness and kindness, green is peace, blue is trust, and so on. I feel that if you use and show these emotions and contribute them to society, we can little by little put pieces of our world back together. 

Elizabeth Tucker
Virginia Beach Middle School
Ms. Long



The artwork I created is intended to portray emotions that are visible, but indescribable. Sometimes there are things that you can’t say in words or tell in writing. Art has a way of communicating feelings that you can’t express in any other way. I made this piece to show how someone's joy can be powerful and moving. Facial expressions can show a remarkable amount of wonderment and happiness, so I wanted to take the opportunity to represent this. The butterflies symbolize the happy things in her life. These are the things that inspire her and bring her joy. The light orbs coming from behind the girl’s head are her thoughts and feelings, symbolizing that everyone has beautiful ideas and inspiration can do incredible things. Happiness is a powerful thing and I feel that it should be seen and appreciated.

Angelina Vito-Cruz
Virginia Beach Middle School
Ms. Horner

Give Hope to the Next Gen


I created artwork based on the poem, The Butterfly. It was written by a prisoner who was in a ghetto during the Holocaust and World War II. It is about hope that the butterfly symbolized compared to the awful and depressing conditions of the ghetto. In this artwork, I made the butterfly very colorful in contrast to the dark muted woman. This represents the hope that the people in the ghetto once did have. In the poem the narrator says a butterfly does not live in a ghetto. To me it sounded as if it was a send off, almost like they were sending hope to their kids. In hope that they could give their children a better life. With all the horrible things happening in society, I am very worried about what is in store for the younger generation, which is my generation. I feel like the older generation dumps all their problems onto us then expects us to fix it ourselves. My drawing represents giving hope to later generations. 

Olivia Woodruff
The Williams School
Ms. Lee

Reaching for Hope 


The hand represents people who were in the Holocaust. The scars on the hand shows just how hard they worked. A sign of hope could be visual or mental, but I chose a butterfly because it is beautiful and light. The carving represents when they were taken to become a prisoner of the Holocaust, victims were branded and now a number not a person. Human courage means having hope and that if we believe, and if you try hard your dreams will come true. Through racism, hurt, and also being tortured, they still kept hope in mind. They kept trying to see the light at the end of the tunnel and finally found freedom. This piece of art shows others that the Holocaust survivors were brave and had a lot of courage during this time and how brave they are to share their stories. 

Margaret Wyatt
The Williams School
Ms. Lindgren

Life in Color


When I was learning about the Holocaust I was appalled because the Nazis treated the Jews as not human. They stole everything, and took the culture away from the Jewish people. My painting shows that if you stand up for injustice others will join you, and you can bring color back into your life. The inward feeling of joy, as well as the miracle of life is shown in color on the Jewish people. The feeling of hatred is shown on Hitler in black and white. We can prevent this from happening today by standing up to injustice, and doing what’s right even if it’s hard.

Anastasia Wygant
Norfolk Collegiate School
Ms. Archer

Hoping for a Change


The Climate Change Treaty that is shown above is being signed to have the United States of America on the list. This is something that NEEDS to happen, because if it is not done now, will it ever be done? Signing the treaty could hopefully create a positive change in society even though there are many people in denial of climate change. Climate change has recently become a big problem and it will become worse as we get older. If we would like to stop the change in climate, the rising pollution rates, and icebergs melting, we need more of the larger countries to sign the Climate Change Treaty and actually do as it says. So, not just signing the treaty and being on the list, but actually being the bigger “person,” and making the change. As Greta Thunberg mentioned during her speech at the 2018 United Nations Climate Change Conference, “since our leaders are behaving like children, we will have to take the responsibility they should have taken long ago.”-COP24, Poland, 12/4/18. Greta Thunberg is a teen climate activist that is very inspirational to many teenagers and young adults.