Comptroller Presents Three St. Mary’s County Students with Maryland Masters Awards

- Unveiling Ceremony Honors Students in Elementary, Middle and High Schools -

 Annapolis, Md. (December 5, 2013) – Comptroller Peter Franchot presented his Maryland Masters Awards Thursday to three St. Mary’s County students: Avery Kent, Taylor Bahen and Jessica Burroughs.

Avery Kent, a fourth grader at Evergreen Elementary School in California, Md., created a still life inspired by Vincent Van Gogh’s sunflower paintings. Taylor Bahen, a seventh grader at Margaret Brent Middle School in Mechanicsville, did a one-point perspective of a medieval village. Jessica Burroughs, a senior at Chopticon High school in Morganza, painted a large scale self-portrait, using primary colors to create form through layers of different values of a color.

The Maryland Master Award recognizes young, talented artists who have displayed extraordinary artistic skills, reflecting the vision of Maryland’s future.  The Comptroller initiated the awards program to celebrate the achievements and talents of students from throughout the state enrolled in public schools from Kindergarten to 12th  grade. The students’ art will be on exhibit for two months at the Comptroller’s Office in Annapolis. Selected by local superintendents, the students, their families and school officials were invited to join Comptroller Franchot and state and local officials for the official art exhibit unveiling ceremony and award presentation.

 During his nearly 30 years in public service, Comptroller Franchot consistently has advocated for better funding for arts programs and keeping art alive in Maryland schools.

“I emphasize that arts are important to business,” the Comptroller said. The students’ art will join a collection of original paintings by one of the Comptroller’s favorite artists, Herman Maril.  An American modernist, Maril was born in Baltimore and served as a professor at the University of Maryland for more than 30 years.

Media Contact: Barbara Sauers, (410) 260-7438 (office), (410) 212-9414 (cell)