Standing together with art – Creativity Uncontained

By Pujanee Galappaththi 

In an attempt to build hope during a sad time and motivate the younger generations of our community, the Alumni Association of the University of Colombo has organised a 2D artwork and motion picture contest for all Sri Lankans, in the name of “Creativity Uncontained” under the main theme “Coronavirus and Society”.  

Organised by the Alumni Association of the University of Colombo in collaboration with the Kandy City Centre, Ramya Holdings, ExTea, Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Sri Lanka, the Institute of Valuers of Sri Lanka (IVSL), and Teleview  (Pvt.) Ltd. and supported by the corporate partners of the Alumni Association – Deutsche Bank, Nations Trust Bank (NTB), 3CS, Lanka ORIX Leasing Company (LOLC) and Akbar Brothers,– this is an initiative to cultivate hope and nurture the creative souls for the brave Sri Lankans who are battling the Covid-19 pandemic.  

To give us more details about this initiative, we spoke to University of Colombo Alumni Association President Rajeev Amarasuriya and Creativity Uncontained Project Manager Senanayake Bandara. 

Creativity Uncontained Project Manager Senanayake Bandara

According to Bandara, contestants may submit 2D artwork and motion pictures for the competition until 25 April 2020 and the guidelines under which the submissions are required to be made are available on the official Facebook page of the Alumni Association of the University of Colombo.

The 2D artwork is restricted to individual participation and is judged according to the age brackets given here, along with the prizes for the winners of each category. This category admits drawings, paintings, collages, mix media works, photography, graphic design, cartoons, etc., whereas the motion picture category does not have age restrictions and can be a combined effort. Submissions under this category may include videos (cannot exceed 120 seconds), vines, stock motions, animated work, etc. However, TikTok videos will not be accepted.

When asked about the objective of this competition, Amarasuriya told us that they aim to provide a platform for children and adults to showcase their creativity in a manner that improves mental wellbeing during these trying times. Furthermore, we were told that this would also be an opportunity to spread awareness about the current pandemic and express associated emotions relating to the current situation. Our folks at the Alumni Association assured us that any queries could be made through their official Facebook page.

We found out that the competition is not an annual occurrence. However, if this competition proves to be a success, we were told that they will certainly look into making this an annual competition. 

University of Colombo Alumni Association President Rajeev Amarasuriya

We asked Amarasuriya on who will judge the submissions under each category, to which he said: “The panel will comprise a cross-section of persons including those with specialised expertise in the relevant areas, ensuring that there would be complete objectivity and competence in the selection process.”

Speaking of the submission process, Bandara told us that several specific steps should be followed when uploading your artwork, which are as follows. Contestants are required to upload their artwork (non-digital artwork can be scanned or photographed) to their Facebook profile (parent/guardian’s Facebook profile for minors) with the following requirements in the caption:


  1. The title of your 2D artwork with a small description depicting your sub-theme/topic 
  2. 2D artwork: Your name and age bracket; for motion pictures, name(s) of the creator(s) 
  3. Type “My submission for Creativity Uncontained” and tag the “The Alumni Association of University of Colombo” Facebook page 
  4. Challenge and tag at least one friend to take part in this competition  
  5. Include the following hashtags at the bottom: #AlumniUOC #CreativityUncontained #COVID19 #MyPandemicSurvivalPlan #Isolate&compete 
  6. Finally, like and follow “The Alumni Association of University of Colombo” Facebook page

Finally, we asked Amarasuriya to share a message with the community in this trying time. “These are unprecedented times, and sometimes it feels as if we are living in a movie. My message to the community is to appreciate that there is light at the end of the tunnel and that the length of this pandemic, at least for Sri Lanka, is dependent on our collective population and how we conduct ourselves. Let us use this time to bond with family, attend to things which we otherwise don’t have time for, and take some rest and relax.”


Age brackets 

2D artwork

Ages 4-10 years: 

First prize – Rs. 12,500           

Second prize – Rs. 10,000

Third prize – Rs.  7,500

Ages 11-16 years: 

First prize – Rs. 15,000

Second prize – Rs. 10,000

Third prize – Rs.  7,500

Ages 16-21 years

First prize – Rs. 20,000

Second prize – Rs. 15,000

Third prize – Rs. 10,000

Ages 21 years and above:

First prize – Rs. 25,000

Second prize – Rs. 17,500

Third prize – Rs. 12,500

Motion picture

First prize: Rs. 25,000

Second prize: Rs. 20,000

Third prize: Rs. 15,000

In addition, commendable submissions will be awarded certificates for the 2D art competition and cash prizes of Rs. 7,500 each will be awarded for five commendable submissions in the motion picture category.