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Kids’ art needed for expo

Until Monday, July 26, children in LaGrange are invited to submit artwork for an automotive expo in LaGrange’s Chinese sister city, Liuzhou, according to a LaGrange Art Museum press release. From Sept. 16-20, the ancient Chinese city, founded in 111 BC, will host the 11th China-ASEAN (Liuzhou) Automotive Expo, which will show sedans, SUVs, construction machinery, and other vehicles, along with submitted artwork.

The press release says the event will attract consulates, foreign institutions in China, famous automobile enterprises and over 100,000 visitors.

The art exhibition will be a first step toward a cultural exchange between LaGrange and Liuzhou. Children aged six through 13 may participate.

They may draw or paint vehicles they have seen, their dream vehicles, or their ideas of future vehicles.

The vehicles must be the sorts that move on the ground, not ones that fly or float in water. LAM Executive Director Laura Jennings specified that they can be cars, trucks, motorbikes or construction vehicles. 

However, participants may draw or paint cars, trucks, motorbikes, or construction vehicles that can transform into boats, planes, etc.

The artwork must be original, named, and not previously published or used in competitions.

Artwork can be submitted directly to the museum on 112 Lafayette Parkway, or LAM staff can pick it up.

The artwork will be photographed and sent digitally to China.

Each participant’s name, age, artwork title and phone number should be written on the back of the artwork.

After photographing a piece of artwork, the LAM will call the artist’s phone number so they can come get their artwork.

Jennings said the LAM will accept 30 to 50 submissions.

While Liuzhou’s leadership came up with the idea for this cultural exchange, Jennings said city manager Meg Kelsey and Mayor Jim Thornton suggested that the LaGrange Art Museum coordinate the endeavor, since it has connections with local children artists.

“LaGrange used to have a really big sister city program with a couple of cities abroad, and that has sort of died,” Jennings said.

“But the mayor and a few other city dignitaries went to this city in China and decided that they would become sister cities. And that was in 2019.”

Jennings said COVID made it difficult for the cities to have a cultural exchange in 2020.

“I think this is just the beginning of a relationship, and how fitting that it would be art,” Jennings said. “Art’s a universal language.”