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YOU-Topia Virtual Youth Challenge Art Exhibit

A utopia is an imagined place or state of things in which everything is perfect. We’ve asked young artists to share their YOU-Topia, their perfect world view in this fun online art show. The challenge was open to youth ages 0-14. Their perfect world can be summer all year long, bright color kaleidoscopes or maybe it’s based off a book or a movie they like or an animal, real, imagined or well-loved. We can’t wait to share the submissions!


The YOU-Topia Virtual Youth Challenge opened online during Virtual Akron Artwalk, May 2, 2020.  The show can be accessed here after May 2: YOU-Topia Virtual Youth ChallengeA second YOU-Topia show featuring the work of artists 15 and older can be linked to here: YOU-Topia Juried Virtual Art Exhibition.


Edith Wadkins is a fine artist, theatrical scenic artist and set designer. Her work encompasses pastel and watercolors, faux painting, murals and theater scenery.
YOU-Topia Edith Wadkins
Edith Wadkins, Juror, YOU-Topia
A current resident of Grove City, Ohio, Edith (Edie) was raised in the small town of Amsterdam, Ohio in the rolling hills of the Appalachian Mountains. She attended the Edison Local School District and graduated in 1998. Then she went to Otterbein College (now Otterbein University) where she obtained her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre Design and Technology.
Since she was twelve she has rarely spent a day without negotiating some kind of art media. She has designed and/or painted scenery for over 200 shows. Her work has been seen in almost every Columbus professional theatre and many educational institutions around town. Some recent design highlights include the sets for CATCO productions of Master Class, Sex with Strangers and Fun Home, CATCO is Kids’ production of Anne of Green Gables, Cowgirls Don’t Ride Zebras and Madeline’s Christmas. She has also painted the scenery for many recent Columbus Children’s theatre shows such as James and the Giant Peach and Shrek the Musical. She has received Theatre Roundtable Set Design Awards for Babar and Kabuki Sleeping Beauty. She has done workshops with local pastel portrait artist Sandy Reddig.
She also spent two years at Cooley Studios learning to draw and paint in the French atelier curriculum. She has illustrated a book by Linda Lee Greene called Bussy and His Champion Roosters. She has received many ribbons at the Ohio State Fair including a Best in Show Ribbon in Creative Arts in 2011.  

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