Warrior artists win for visual metaphors


Jess Zsiga

Ryan Van Middlesworth’s piece “Eat Your Words” is being displayed in the Metaphor High School Exhibition.

Jason Zappulla , Writer

Several student artists have received a big honor. Ryan Van Middlesworth, 11th grade, and Juliana Franzese, 10th grade, each had their artwork accepted in the Metaphor High School Exhibition at the Museum of Fine Arts. Each one created a work that literally represented a common idiom, metaphor, or figure of speech: Ryan did “Eat Your Words,” and Juliana used “In Touch with Nature.”

According to Mr. Locascio, “A visual metaphor uses images rather than words to make the comparison.”
Ryan said he chose the phrase ‘eat your words’ because “It seemed like the metaphor with the most potential for creativity.” Ryan’s work was in the Photography category, and shows a bowl filled with crumpled bits of newspaper and a spoon being dipped into the bowl. Ryan was a Top Award winner.

Ryan said he had been working on the piece for approximately 30 minutes, plus time to edit the picture in Photoshop. According to Ryan, he got the outcome he wanted on his third try. Of his work, Ryan said he is most proud of the lighting, saying it “came out really good.” Ryan said the exhibition is the first show his work has been entered in.
Juliana also had her work accepted into the exhibition. Juliana’s piece is a colored pencil drawing, showing trees and waterfalls coming out of two giant human hands. She said what inspired her to do the phrase ‘In touch with nature’ came after completing her piece, saying, “After I completed the piece, I realized it was truly ‘In Touch with Nature’, as the hands showed throughout the artwork.” Juliana worked on her art for “about two weeks.” Of her work, Juliana said she was most proud of “how well the colored pencils blended together in the end,” explaining that “it really made the piece look smooth and come together.”
The metaphor artwork will be displayed at the Museum of Fine Arts (255 Beach Dr NE, St. Petersburg) from March 28-April 24. The opening reception was held Wednesday, April 6, from 6:00 PM-8:00 PM. Awards were presented at the reception at 6:30 PM, in the museum’s Marly room.