The submissions are in and marking has begun for art students from Whanganui High School, Whanganui Girls' College and Rangitikei College.

The students had their works on display at the Wanganui Community Arts Centre on Taupo Quay where they were being assessed by Whanganui High School head of visual art, Graham Hall.

"The schools are all doing the same achievement standard, they're doing a similar body of work and it focuses on their interpretation of the events of Parihaka in 1881," Hall said.

"They had to do some research, work out the level of symbolism to incorporate into their work and do a print, a woodcut or a painting of their ideas."

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In 1881 approximately 1600 government troops invaded Parihaka, which at the time symbolised peaceful resistance to the confiscation of Maori land.

"In the past we've done Kiwi and we've done huia in Whanganui, but this is the first time we've done something that's more of a political movement for the kids," Hall said.

"It's been pretty cool to work out the level of thinking for some kids with their work, how deep they've gone and how they've used other artists as references."

Hall said that some pieces really stood out, such as Whanganui High School's Matthew Adam's 1881 and Lily Claypole's The Fifer.

Rangitikei College's Alison Edwards work Fatal Impact also caught his eye.

Hall was finishing up marking on Friday, he would share his thoughts and marks with assessors from the other two schools before the works were removed on Sunday.

Later, the students will begin work on their portfolios to ensure that they achieve NCEA.