Bousquet Holstein is pleased to present our 2021 Photography Contest Finalists!

The Empty Auditorium – By Aum Patel – First Place Winner

For the past 13 years, Bousquet Holstein has hosted an Annual Photography Contest for high school students in grades 9-12 in Onondaga County. The theme of each year’s contest has been inspired by an exhibition at the Everson Museum of Art. Each year our law firm receives hundreds of entries, from every high school in the county.

We are pleased to present the 13th Annual Bousquet Holstein High School Photography Contest Finalists and Winners. The theme for our 2021 Annual Photography Contest was inspired by Who What When Where, an exhibition at the Everson Museum of Art. The exhibition is framed by Who, What, When, Where, 1998, a work first displayed at Carrie Mae Weems’ 1998 solo exhibition at the Everson. This year’s exhibition explored how each individual interprets an image through the lens of identity, place, and time.

Carrie Mae Weems is internationally acclaimed and Syracuse-based. She is considered one of the most influential contemporary American artists. Throughout her career, Weems has “investigated family relationships, cultural identity, sexism, class, political systems, and the consequences of power” and, in doing so, she is “[d]etermined as ever to enter the picture—both literally and metaphorically . . . .“ 

We encouraged student photographers to see the exhibition, study other works by Ms. Weems, and create images that reflect their lived experience, defined by the who, what, when, and where of their life. We encouraged the student photographers to be aware of how they entered their pictures and  how they projected a part of their identity.

To the delight of students and teachers,  Ms. Weems attended the virtual awards presentation, and offered enthusiastic words of encouragement as each finalist was recognized and as students spoke about what inspired them to take their image(s). Images submitted by students are reviewed by our judge’s panel without revealing student names or schools. 

For the first time ever, the top three images chosen by our judges were submitted by one student, Aum Patel, a senior at Fayetteville-Manlius High School who was recognized as the Grand Prize Winner. We expanded the winner’s circle to award more prizes and acknowledge the exceptional creativity  of our finalists. Aum’s first place image (pictured above) was featured on the firm’s 2021 Thanksgiving card.

To view our 2009-2021 finalists click on the links below: