The Art Group
From left: Brenna Krueger, 12, Tempia Nunley, 12, and Zoe Koons, 11, stand in the art room of Netzaberg Youth Center in Germany where they created their art pieces.

ESCHENBACH, Germany (May 21, 2012) -- For three young ladies who recently saw their art move to the national level of the Boys and Girls Club Fine Arts Exhibit, art is a newfangled area of success.

Before the exhibition, Brenna Krueger, 12, Tempia Nunley, 12, and Zoe Koons, 11, approached art as a casual pastime and never entered into an art show. So they were delighted when their entries, among 12 others, were chosen by Netzaberg Youth Center staff to represent Grafenwoehr in the Overseas European Regional level of the exhibition. The excitement grew as their works moved onto the National Level where the BGCA will choose a winner.

The girls hardly expected to progress so far in such a competitive exhibition. All seemed to enter their artwork on a curious whim.

"I kind of wanted to see how far I could get," said Krueger, who submitted a sculpture of a dragon, entitled "The Seer."

"I just wanted to see what it would do," said Koons of her glass paint, gem and button collage. "I didn't think it would make it to the States."

Nunley expressed the same casual regard for the exhibition, adding, "I just thought it'd be a lot of fun." Her still life of paint brushes in a jar as a standout among the submissions.

Though Krueger, Nunley and Koons feel modest about their artistic bents, they speak with zeal about their other hobbies and pastimes.

Precocious and deep-thinking, Krueger possesses an intimidating wealth of interests. For fun, she reads encyclopedias, rides horses, devours fantasy books (her dragon sculpture was inspired by the "Eragon" series,) runs, collects model horses and reads her dad's medical books.

Her dream is to be the first female jockey to win the Kentucky Derby on a Philly, but recognizes that her continually climbing height may sour that ambition. She is instead setting her sights on being horse veterinarian.

She has traveled to Egypt, keeps abreast of current events, and cites the British Museum as a favorite destination.

Krueger acknowledges her broad spectrum of jumbled pursuits, but emphasizes that she finds them easy to compartmentalize. She compares this disorderly classification to a bedroom.

"I organize my room, but my drawers are still messy." After a beat, she adds, "but my life is more complicated than that."

Nunley has spent the past year painting, trying to squeeze it in between her other activities like softball. But, her artistic talents find other ways to emerge. Nunley is nearly done knitting a scarf, a project that has taken her the greater part of a month to complete.

She also plays the flute in advanced band at Netzaberg Middle School. Though Nunley is only in seventh grade, she was vaulted into the eighth grade advanced band due to her good grades.

Her real joy in school, however, is math class. Nunley cites this subject as her favorite because, as she philosophically put it, "life sort of revolves around math."

Nunley's devotion to the subject is such that she aims to become an accountant as her career so she can continue to exploring math even into adulthood.

Koons' love of motorcycles set her apart from the other girls.

"That's what I want my first car to be," she explained.

Koons is smitten with motorcycles. The speed, appearance, aggressive sound and cool factor of bikes all contribute to her yearning.

Other, tamer interests inspire Koons, as well. She likes reading "books with big words" and playing Wii and Xbox. Like Nunley, Koons cites her favorite subject as math, a preference she attributes to her teacher.

"The teacher (Scott Keiser) pushes me to learn," she said. "If I have it wrong, the teacher pushes me to get it right."

Eventually, Koons wishes to join the military as a doctor in order to continue her family's tradition of military service.

Page last updated Mon May 21st, 2012 at 00:00