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Santa Barbara Students Display at the Louvre

Nine and Eleven-Year Old Painters Take Works to Paris


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Santa Barbara residents Gabriel and Colette Speer will have the honor of presenting their paintings at The Louvre in Paris, France next month. Already exhibited last year by the Los Angeles Cultural Affairs Department, these masterpieces were two of ten paintings chosen to be displayed in The Louvre. Considering the amazing prestige of this exhibit’s location, would it shock you to know the brother and sister painting duo are only 9 and 11-years old?

These young artists are both students at Montecito Union School and were just two of 47 young painters to take part in a special one-on-one discourse with Brazilian artist Alecia Seidler three years ago. After their work was displayed for six weeks in LA last year, a French arts organization sponsored the work of the Speer kids-and eight other especially gifted painters-in the upcoming Paris display.

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To say these kids are talented would be a vast understatement. Given only a blank square canvas, the two used nothing but their imaginations and personal inspiration to create paintings that could have come straight from the Renaissance itself. Gabriel’s piece features a portrait of King Arthur on his stallion, and Colette’s is her own artistic interpretation of the Holy Annunciationto the Virgin Mary. An opportunity like this is something seasoned artists of 60 years would give their left arm for.. With so much talent and so much time, it’s safe to say the Speer parents can expect great things from their amazing kids in the years to come.

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