For more than 25 years, the Manchester Craftsmen's Guild has been a champion for youth, art and education in Pittsburgh. In the past, MCG has hosted an annual juried arts exhibition where talented students from the Pittsburgh Public School system competed for accolades and awards. Now, MCG is expanding the competition so more students can compete.
On May 10, the Guild will hand out $100,000 in awards for the MCG Invitational, which will allow Pittsburgh Public School students to compete in the exhibition with students from Pittsburgh's charter schools, as well as schools in West Mifflin, Duquesne, Wilkinsburg, Homestead and McKeesport.
Craftsman Guild COO Paulo Nzambi says the invitational gives students a chance to not only show off their work, but to also continue that work for the future.
"[The invitational is] for those who have produced meritorious and exemplary work. There is an opportunity for them to win cash awards, prizes and post-secondary school scholarships," Nzambi said.
He also says the awards ceremony will be the "Academy Awards" of youth art.
"There will be photography, there will be painting, there may be some ceramics," Nzambi said. "There is a section for portfolio exhibitions where a student has submitted a variety of different work in different mediums."
Even though this isn't a professional arts exhibition, Nzambi says people should still come in order to support these up-and-coming artists.
"We live in a day and age where a lot of negative is reported about young people, and some of the great things that they do and the extraordinary capacity that they've shown is often overlooked," Nzambi said.
The May 10 awards ceremony at the MCG Auditorium is both free and open to the public.