February 23, 2022

Teen Blog: Art Submissions: Transcendence by Ayden Mullen, Under Her Skin by Grace Clausen, Suspicions by Camille Guse, First Day Sober By Remy Fernandes

Tai Bickham


MCA Denver loves teens and celebrates their amazingness, their willingness to take risks, and of course, the cool and unique ways they express themselves creatively. Periodically we like to feature creative works submitted by teens in our community on this blog. Below are recent submissions by Ayden Mullen of Aurora, CO, Grace Clausen of Castle Rock, CO, Camille Guse of Littleton, CO, and Remy Fernandes of Lafayette, CO.  


Ayden Mullen 

12th Grade

Transcendence by Ayden Mullen
image: Ayden Mullen, Transcendence, 2022. 8x8 square paper, paint pen, ink and collage.

Ayden: Transcendence is a three-panel series piece about my experiences with gender, growth, and medical transitioning. HRT (hormone replacement therapy) allowed me to learn about my identity through growth and change. The first panel--a baby bird hatching from an egg--is a metaphor for me coming out as transgender. The eggshell is made of the pamphlet inside the box for Depo-Testosterone. The second panel--a juvenile bird--depicts an increase in confidence and self-trust. The early changes in medical transitioning quickly brought me a new love for being alive, similar to a baby bird growing plumage and learning to fly. The packaging for a syringe is scattered throughout the clouds and flowers. The final panel--an adult bird--represents exploration and comfort. The bird can now fly and explore its environment, similar to the freedom granted to me when I felt comfortable in my own body. The cardboard box for Depo-Testosterone is scattered through the sky, clouds, and foliage.

Under Her Skin

Grace Clausen

12th Grade 

Under Her Skin by Grace Clausen
image: Grace Clausen, Under Her Skin, 2022. Digital Painting. 

Grace: Under Her Skin is about being trapped in a relationship and being used as a placeholder. It is part of my larger body of work for my International Baccalaureate High-Level art class about the identity of discomfort. It is completely digital.


Camille Guse

12th Grade

Suspicions by Camille Guse
image: Camille Guse, Suspicions, 2022. Digital Painting.

Camille: I was inspired by my mother's Russian heritage and the prominence of superstition in our household. The number four has always been my mom's angel number, so I wanted to incorporate it as a significant part of the artwork. I played with the idea of black cats and wanted to reflect that from the portrait's face. I also feel patterns are a heavy influence on superstition, which inspired the heavy patterning in the background. I felt really close to this piece and feel it was a huge stylistic accomplishment for me!

First Day Sober

Remy Fernandes

10th Grade

First Day Sober by Remy Fernandes
image: Remy Fernandes, First Day Sober, 2022. Mixed media with water and acrylic paint, paper towels, felt, and thumbtacks, and some digital editing.

Remy: First Day Sober is a sensitive piece that I wanted to make to draw awareness to mental health and self-harm in teens. People don’t see the violence and manic state that comes with these struggles, they only see the aftermath when it’s hidden with long sleeves and a smile. First Day Sober is meant to open the curtain to people so they can see what goes on behind closed doors.


If you are a teen with something to say or share, we encourage you to submit your artwork with us for a chance to be featured on our teen blog or on the television screen in the Teen Idea Box here at MCA Denver!

Teen admission to the museum is always free, and now when you visit, you can receive a free print or sticker of the newly designed Teens Always Free campaign by artist and former Failure Lab participant, Nia Musiba.