ManneqART is an international arts and education nonprofit whose mission is to inspire creativity, teach problem-solving skills and reward excellence in creation of sculpture on the human form. Its 2017 ManneqART Sculptural Artworks Competition is now underway.

Each year, the competition presents four themes. A $1,000 award is given for the best artwork in each theme, as determined by an independent panel of expert judges. In addition, a $3,000 Master Award is given for the best overall artwork, which may not be a theme winner. This year’s four themes are Eco, Ocean, Energy and Aviation.

In addition, ManneqART is collaborating with the Sandy Spring Museum, located in the old Quaker village of Sandy Spring, Md., to encourage and reward artworks that have an “inner light” component. Artists may treat this as a fifth theme or may add an “inner light” element to an artwork reflecting one of the other four themes. Works that reflect the “inner light” theme are eligible for a $2,000 award, plus their works may be selected for a two-month exhibition at the Sandy Spring Museum.

The competition includes the following events.

• June 25, ManneqART Madness Photography Day, Historic Savage Mill, 9 a.m.– 5 p.m. Free

All entries for the competition will be unveiled to the public on live models, fully made up and professionally photographed. Photography is donated to ManneqART by Irvin-Simon Photographers. The photos will capture the 2017 competition and appear in the 2018 ManneqART Calendar. Fifty volunteer models to wear artworks at this and other events during the year are needed.
Hair and makeup artists collaborate with the creators of the sculptures to create the final presentation for the competition. The public gets an inside view of these activities and can watch the narrated photo shoot of each artwork. Five judges, including Coleen West, executive director of the Howard County Arts Council, will be present at Savage Mill to assess the artworks and pick the winners.

• Sept. 9–24, Public Exhibition, Columbia Mall, Columbia Center for the Arts, the ManneqART Museum and other Howard County locations

• Sept. 9–Nov. 18, Inner Light exhibit, Sandy Spring Museum, 17901 Bentley Road, Sandy Spring. ManneqART produces a map for this self-guided tour of the artworks.

• Nov. 5, Annual Awards Gala and ManneqART Masquerade Party, Ten Oaks Ballroom, Clarksville, 6–9 p.m. Enjoy dinner, dancing and an unusual “fashion show.”

ManneqART has now opened a museum where the public can experience, up close, these artistic creations. Located inside the Andersen Becker wearable art clothing factory on Maier Road in Laurel, the ManneqART Museum is open on Saturdays from 9 a.m.– 4 p.m. and by special arrangement. The space is also available for meetings and special events, including wedding and other receptions.

Visit or call 301-778-0616 for more information.