Kenmille paints a
not-so-pretty picture about meth
Montana Meth Project artwork created by Barbara Kenmille is located at
Main Street in Polson on the CSKT Natural Resources Building. (Lailani
POLSON — Methamphetamine
is a powerfully addictive drug that leaves individuals, families and
communities with devastating effects all around. The most serious and
rampant problem is - death. Its use remains a serious problem, not only
across the U.S., but here in Montana.
Meth causes dramatic changes in the brain and
using the drug can lead to depression, paranoia, violent behavior, and
other serious mental disorders. Meth also destroys the body, and can
cause fatal kidney and lung problems, liver damage, and convulsions,
even strokes, according to Montana Meth Project Foundation.
The Montana Meth Project was formed to reduce
methamphetamine use in the state by arming people with the facts about
Meth. The message "Not Even Once" speaks to how highly addictive Meth
The Montana Meth Project launched a campaign in
2006 called Paint the State where teens have the opportunity to take
their own anti-Meth theme through their original artwork and to get the
word out about methamphetamine. The contest is designed to encourage
teens to use their creativity and passion in a whole new way, for a
very important cause.
Eighteen year old, Barbara Kenmille of Pablo
jumped on the opportunity creating an art mural on the Tribal Natural
Resource building on the main street of Polson. She drew inspiration
for her piece from the loss of her uncle because of an addiction to
meth a year ago.
Kenmille's work is done with acrylic paint,
pencil, dry erase markers, duct tape and tinfoil. The skeleton, she
says, represents what a person becomes after using. The shadow shows
the shame and remorse of what he/she has become. There are posters in
the background with symbols of what the person could have become,
Kenmille, who also works a summer job, said it
took her approximately 30 hours within a three-day frame to finish the
art piece. The first day she spent obtaining the permission permit and
materials to do the artwork. The following days were spent hours on a
ladder creating her work of art message.
Paint the State is a public art competition and
large-scale community action program aimed at communicating the risks
of Meth use through public works of art. The contest offers teens a way
to get involved and compete for $3,000 in cash awards in each of
Montana's 56 counties, plus a statewide grand prize of $5,000.
Teens are asked to use the "Meth: Not Even Once"
logo, tagline, or other anti-meth theme, a little inspiration, and a
lot of imagination to create a work of art-any style, any medium-that's
clearly visible by the general public.
The contest is open to individuals or teams aged
13 - 18 years of age. The registration deadline was July 7 with final
entries submitted by July 18. Winners will be announced in Helena on
Fifteen works of art are displayed throughout Lake
A gallery of artwork across the state per county
can be viewed at www.paintthestatemontana.org.