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Primary school wins a customised graffiti mural after one of its pupils entered an art contest

There were 59 entries.

A primary academy has won a nature-inspired graffiti mural thanks to this little girl's drawing.

Yasmine Mohammed, a Year 6 pupil at Queensmead Primary Academy, has been chosen as the winner of Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust’s 2021 Wild Art Competition.

The young Leicester artist won the wildlife-themed graffiti mural for her school with her take on an eye-level encounter with a hedgehog.

Rebecca Catlow, Yasmine’s teacher, said, “We were delighted to find out that Yamine’s amazing hedgehog had been awarded first prize in the competition. Her artistic ability has gone from strength to strength this year, as her understanding of colour, tone and texture have developed.

“It is lovely to see her talent recognised by an expert panel of artists – it is such an achievement for her and we are so proud.”

Yasmine will receive a set of art materials to help her create more masterpieces, and has also won a graffiti mural created by artists from Graffwerk, the team behind Leicester’s Bring the Paint Festival.

Yasmine with her teacher Rebecca Catlow

Entrants to the competition, which was open to all Leicester primary school pupils, were challenged to create a piece of art that showed off the UK’s wonderful wildlife.

An expert panel had a tough task picking three prize winners from 59 entries, but Yasmine’s close-up depiction of a hedgehog in its natural environment impressed them enough to take the top spot.

Leicester-based wildlife artist Richard Jarvis was among the judges. He said: “It was a really difficult task to decide on the winners as the quality of the work was so high.

"I really liked Yasmine’s use of colours and textures, depicting fur, spines and the hedgehog's environment, pushing its nose through the leaves.

“I really enjoyed viewing all of the entries and the wide variety of techniques and materials employed. I hope all of the entrants will continue to observe, draw and enjoy our native wildlife.”

Graffwerk will now work with pupils at Queensmead Primary Academy to decide which animals will feature in the mural.

Izzy Hoskins from Graffwerk, who was also on the judging panel, said: “It’s been a big challenge to decide on a winner as there was an incredibly high standard of work submitted. It’s been great to see so many young people get involved.

“Yasmine created a beautiful piece of art and we are looking forward to delivering the winning mural at Queensmead Primary.”

The top three prize winners were:

  1. Yasmine Mohammed, age 11, Queensmead Primary Academy

  2. Neva Zaman, age 11, Evington Valley Primary School

  3. Abidah Hossain, age 5, Medway Community Primary School

The judges were so impressed with the quality of entries that they also selected four ‘Commended’ pieces.

Jamie Perry, Head of Engagement for Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust, was also on the panel. He said: “It was brilliant to see the range of entries to our Wild Art Competition and to read the judges’ comments. Leicester children clearly have a great love for nature and we hope that all those who entered are inspired to create more wildlife-themed art.”

The Wild Art Competition is supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery, through the Trust’s Wild Forest School project.

The judging panel comprised Leicester-based wildlife artist Richard Jarvis, aerosol artist Izzy Hoskins from Graffwerk, Graduate Project Officer for Leicester City Council Hollie Campbell, and Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust’s Head of Engagement Jamie Perry.

All the entries will be uploaded in a virtual gallery on the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust YouTube Channel and on the Wild Forests School's website.

Bring the Paint will return to Leicester in 2021, running from August 23 to 29.


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