Martyna Kaminska, a freshman at Stony Brook University in New York, was awarded an Honorable Mention Commendation for Art from the Frederic Whitaker and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker Foundation for Spring 2020.
In her student statement she wrote: “I have always dreamed of working in the art field because art has been a passion of mine since the time I picked up a pencil. I always found a way to get myself occupied with drawing and painting, which quickly turned into a serious passion. This led me to joining art courses at Pratt Institute during elementary school. I loved being surrounded by so many artists, so going there almost felt like a dream.
A few years later, I got into a high school which also coincidently was known for its art programs. I was in the fine arts program because that was what I did best in. Therefore, I stuck with it for all four years. Along the way, after creating many kinds of projects, I began to submit them to certain organizations for review and possibly getting awards for them. One of the organizations, Arts Connection, was offering a gift card to an arts supply store and a chance to have a piece shown at an exhibition, which pushed me to go for the shot. In the end, I managed to end up with having three of my pieces in public exhibitions at Industry City in Brooklyn as well as a law firm office in Manhattan. Another organization, Scholastic, featured an annual award ceremony for New York City’s best chosen pieces. After submitting my pieces in 2018 and 2019, I was able to win a few silver and gold keys both years. This was a very big accomplishment for me because I knew that these awards were very competitive, considering students from all of New York City submitted to it. Knowing that there were about half a million submissions and only a couple hundred were chosen to receive awards really opened my mind about my art. That art is something I need to focus on because it is something I am good at.
Such accomplishments led me to choosing Studio/Fine Art as my major.