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Last Updated: Thursday April 09 2009 14:10 GMT

My art was in a world famous gallery!

Press Packer Marly with Solar Girl, her artwork

Press Packer Marly has loved art since she was first able to pick up a crayon at nursery.

She recently won a children's art competition and her sculpture was displayed in London's Tate Modern gallery.

"I couldn't help overhearing some kids in school talking about an art competition they were entering which sounded really exciting.

I found out it was the Unilever International Schools Art Project which invites children from all over the world to create a painting, sculpture or small installation around a certain theme. If we won, our art could be displayed in Tate Modern in London.


When I heard the theme was 'Spaces and Places' I began to think about the solar system. I wanted to make something strange, new and individual.

I raked around in the cupboard and found a mask which reminded me of my sister's hairstyling doll. She let me borrow it and from there I created Solar Girl.

Marly's sculpture, Solar Girl

Solar Girl has plaits in her hair with planets through them sticking out around her head. She is decorated with stars in her hair and on her body.

She represents science and smart people who care about our planet, but she hides behind a mask because people get bullied for being smart.

Competition winner

Then the most amazing thing happened, I won! I couldn't believe it when I was chosen out of everyone as the UK representative.

It was great to have my actual sculpture Solar Girl at the Tate Modern gallery in London.

I went to the gallery to see my art on display and everyone was taking photos and asking me questions.

The competition winners from around the world
The competition winners from around the world

I got to meet the other young artists from different countries around the world like Brazil.

I was shy and scared at first but then I began to say hello and discovered that it was possible to communicate through pictures and movement so it didn't matter that we didn't speak the same language. I even learnt some Japanese and Greek words!

What is art?

The most important thing I've learnt is that although you might not be able to draw you can still make great artwork and be creative. It's the ideas that are important!

Hopefully this time next year I'll have a portfolio of work to be proud of."

Marly, 12, Highlands, Scotland

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