Valencia High School student Noelle Amey was named the winner of the Congressional Art Competition on Wednesday, meaning her photograph, “Regeneration,” will soon hang in the Capitol.
Students attending high schools throughout the 25th Congressional District were previously invited to participate in the national competition for the opportunity to fly to see their art and visit Rep. Katie Hill, D-Agua Dulce, in Washington, D.C.
Since its creation in 1982, more than 650,000 high school students have participated in the competition, and dozens of parents, students and members of the community gathered at FastFrame Valencia to see if they would represent the district this year.
Hill and members of her office were on hand to view the colorful and creative pieces that were crafted using cameras, acrylic paint and other mediums of artistic expression.
Participant Gracie Pekrul, who was the creator of one of the pieces selected as a top-5 finisher, said after the event that she previously sought to become an artist, but the congresswoman inspired her to get involved in politics and possibly become an activist who uses to art to bring attention to various causes.
Pekrul added her acrylic painting, which was among the crowd’s favorites, was created in an effort to show off the district’s unique and colorful communities.
Hill, who was not one of the event’s judges, said after the event, “What I’m so excited about is the piece that was selected — and really you can see it reflected in so many of these pieces — is that we’re seeing young people who want to spark change.”
“It’s an incredible opportunity for young people to show their art has meaning,” Hill added.