The winners of the Church History Museum’s 12th International Art Competition have been announced, and the artwork is breathtaking.
Each of the contest’s entries was centered around the theme from 2 Nephi 26:33: All Are Alike Unto God, and 148 of the art pieces have been on display at the Church History Museum since June 2022. The exhibit closes on March 4 but will still be digitally available.
Here are three of this year’s winners:
Esther Hi’ilani Candari, As a Loving Parent
Artist Esther Candari wanted to embody God’s loving concern for his children with her entry and used her neighbor Tara and Tara’s nephew as models for her beautiful painting.
“I feel inspired by this parental instinct to guide one’s child to the good, true, and enlightening things in this life and the next,” Candari told Church Newsroom.
Michelle Franzoni Thorley, Making Space for Us
“This is how I see Jesus,” Thorley writes. “He is in the hot pink bougainvillea of Mexico. His robes are the color of the earth. His skin is the color of the earth. His feet are the color of the earth. … He will make a space for me, even in the desert of my life, and the cactus will bloom and the butterflies will be there to encourage me to continue to become the best version of myself.”
When she isn’t creating art, Michelle Franzoni Thorley is also the cohost of the family history podcast, Love Your Lineage, making a safe place for and serving members of the BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) community.
“Inclusion equals love,” Thorley says, “and when we include and give people access to the appropriate resources, community happens. Family history is giving access to our kindred dead.”
► You may also like: These women are making family history more inclusive—and they might help you love your own lineage
Shelby Stroud, I Remember Those Who Are on the Isles of the Sea
To create this stunning portrait, artist Shelby Stroud spent over 100 hours placing over 25,000 shells and other material found on the beaches of Alabama, Florida, and Mexico.
“Any success that I’ve had with this can be one hundred percent attributed to the Lord,” Stroud told LDS Living. “The things I use, the Lord made. The ideas come from Him.”
► You may also like: By small and simple shells: The beautiful story of healing and hope behind this artist’s stunning portraits
You can see the other three winning entries on Church Newsroom.