Hawaiian Student Xiuying Jin Wins Art and Poetry Contest

Xiuying Jin from Honolulu, HI, has recently won the prestigious Poetry and Art Contest for Peace. Xiuying Jin is home-schooled and his mother who serves as his educator places a strong focus on developing his artistic talents, both in written and visual arts. Xiuying Jin has been presented with certificates in recognition of his contributions to the cause. More than 1,000 students from all over the country took part in the contest.

Within the contest, participants were asked to create a piece of visual art, accompanied by a piece of poetry to explain it. Xiuying Jin chose Dr. Martin Luther King since the submissions were due on January 12th, which is Martin Luther King Day.

"If we are not careful, our colleges will produce a group of close-minded, unscientific, illogical propagandists, consumed with immoral acts. Be careful, 'brethren!' Be careful, teachers!"-biography.com

Xiuying Jin felt that Dr. King's message continues to be of vital importance today. He believes that these messages should be shared with everyone, but particularly to the very young, as they have not yet been tainted by difficulties in society. Rather, they can be encouraged to become responsible citizens through peaceful behavior.

Xiuying Jin's poem built on Dr. King's quote above, which matched his painting of students and teachers standing together in the face of an unknown adversary. The contest organizers hailed the work for not pointing the finger at the problem, since it is not clear what the characters in the painting are standing up against, but rather that it celebrates the strength of solidarity and community cohesion.

"Solidarity is, therefore, the acceptance of our social nature and the affirmation of the bonds we share with all our brothers and sisters. Solidarity creates an environment in which mutual service is encouraged. It also [includes] the social conditions in which human rights can be respected and nurtured."-acton.org

Xiuying Jin's poem was written in a mixture of rhymed quatrains and cadenced unrhymed lines. He aimed to create an extending metaphor of enduring peace and solidarity, basing it on the words of Dr. King, but also calling on other great scholars, educators, and influencers, such as Mahatma Ghandi and Nelson Mandela.

For Xiuying Jin, the overarching idea of the painting and associated poem is to ensure that people can continue to carry the message of peace, love, hope, and courage, and that these messages will never die. During the contest, visitors and jury members were able to see the works of art that the students had created, but they did not yet hear the poems. Rather, finalists were chosen based on the work of art, and those who had been selected would be able to read out their poem. By the time Xiuying Jin finished reading his poem, not a dry eye remained in the room,

One of the jury members said: "Xiuying Jin's painting already stood out because it made us think about what the people represented on it were standing up for, or fighting against. It was a huge piece of discussion so we knew it had to go to the finals. But then when we heard the poetry that young Xiuying Jin had written, all of us just broke down. To see that someone so young can have such a fantastic understanding of the need for peace and love in the world really gives us hope for the future."

As part of the prize, Xiuying Jin's painting will be displayed at the National Civil Rights Museum, which is having a year-long celebration of the life of Dr. King on the 50th anniversary of his death.

"There lived a people who had the moral courage to stand up for their rights and thereby they injected a new meaning into the veins of history and of civilization."-civilrightsmuseum.org

Source: Xiuying Jin


Categories: Colleges and Universities, High Schools, Public Schools

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