04 Jun 2019

FAI Young Artists Contest 2020: new Flying yesterday and tomorrow theme announced

 The popular FAI Young Artists Contest is back. And this year the Federation is asking budding artists between the ages of six and 17 to draw inspiration from a new theme: Flying yesterday and tomorrow.

Running since 1986, the FAI Young Artists Contest is an international art competition that is open to youngsters from all FAI Member countries.

Each year, a different theme is chosen; both to guide the young artists and to reflect the many facets of air sports.

Last year, for example, the theme Flying into the future inspired winning entries from young artists in the USA, China, Belarus, Finland, Russia and Lithuania.

Split into three age categories – Junior (6-9 years old); Intermediate (10-13); and Senior (14-17) – the competition begins with a national selection process in each of the countries taking part.

Each country then submits up to nine winning pictures (three for each age category) to be judged by the FAI International Jury.

Gold, Silver and Bronze medals, together with FAI diplomas, are presented to the young people behind the three best entries in each category.

Flying yesterday and tomorrow: the 2020 theme

The dream to fly is thousands of years old. Ancient stories from around the world tell us of those who wanted to take flight. Their stories of successes and failures started to become reality in the late 1800s, when men and women used the growing technological know-how to build the craft that, up until then, had only been possible in our dreams.

Early balloonists excited the world with flights covering 25 miles in under 3 hours. Now, they have the option of taking a few hours journey or one of thousands of miles over many days in balloons specially designed and equipped to go long distances. Gliders have increased distances and heights as well. While the first glider pilots jumped their gliders from hills and mountains, today’s gliders are towed high into the air and can travel for hundreds of kilometers or more. The first airplanes were made of cloth and wood, and those early crafts were powered by engines that produced around 12 horsepower. 

Today, metal and composites are the materials designers use to make flight faster and safer. In fact, some modern racing planes’ engines produce over 3,500 horsepower, and a modern commercial airliner with multiple engines creates over 95,000 horsepower! While the physics of flight remains the same, the technology is always advancing.

Each generation has learned from those that have come before, adding to what is possible while holding true to the love of flight that is in the heart of all aviators. The dreams of flight have become the reality of today’s sports aviation. The hang gliders, balloonists, racers, and aerobatic pilots fly above us and show what is possible today. What does the future hold? Where will the young aviation dreamers of today lead us?

It is time to get out your favorite artist supplies and give free rein to your imagination to create your work that combines the flights of the past with the dreams of the future in this year’s “Flying yesterday and tomorrow” art contest.