Posts Tagged ‘Congresswoman Chellie Pingree’


Congressional Art Awards

June 13, 2021

Congratulations go to Lewiston and Portland students

In an academic year that was largely defined by remote learning and minimal social gatherings, twelve high school art students welcomed some exciting news from Maine’s Congresswoman Chellie Pingree and Congressman Jared Golden. 

Representatives Pingree and Golden announced the winners of this year’s Congressional Art Competition: Baxter Academy senior Elwen Bernard of Maine’s First District, and Lewiston High School sophomore Whitney Perkins of Maine’s Second District.

Benard’s illustration Passport Photo, and Perkins’ photograph Curious, will be displayed in the Cannon Tunnel of the U.S. Capitol for the entire year, alongside winning artists from districts across the country. The winners are flown to Washington, D.C. in June for the official opening of the show.

“Every year, the sheer talent of Maine student artists blows me away, and this year’s Congressional Art Competition was no exception. Art offers a great outlet through tough times. I’m thrilled to see that students are still connected with their artistic processes after a year of unknowns and immense change,” said Congresswoman Pingree. “Elwen’s piece is poignant and stunning, and I’m sure that it will stand out when it’s on display at the Capitol. My thanks to all the students who participated this year—It is an honor to view your work.”

“I had high hopes for the submissions we’d receive for this year’s Congressional Art Competition, but the students really went above and beyond,” said Congressman Golden. “This contest is a great showcase of the insight and skill of Maine students, and it’s an annual reminder of how fortunate we are to have so many talented young artists in our state. Congratulations to all of our winners and thank you for making our district proud.”

The submitted artwork was judged by a panel of jurors selected by the Maine Arts Commission.  Jurors Juliet Karelsen and Breehan James judged the First District competition.

 The jurors noted in Benard’s Passport Photo, “we encounter a real person whose strength, warmth, honesty, vulnerability and soul come through the finely layered and textured colored pencil markings….It exudes an inner life and an unassuming presence. It speaks loudly in its quiet expressiveness and subtly.”

Jurors Carolyn Wallace-Zani and Teddi-Jann Covell judged the Second District competition.

In Perkins’ Curiosity, the jurors noted the variety and repetition of lines, shapes, tones, and values repeatedly directing the viewer through the nearly empty bus and back again to the young child while confirming her feelings of isolation, uncertainty, and curiosity. “This piece has a strong composition, is well presented and timely. Her backwards glance caught us looking into the now common life of all students around the world during this pandemic. Even though the mask hides a smile, it cannot mask the inquisitiveness of youngsters.”

The judges honored the works of twelve Maine students in total.

First District:  Winner: Elwen Benard of Baxter Academy. First Runner Up: Fiona Jason of Baxter Academy, Second Runner Up: Kaitlyn Sawicki of Freeport High School. Honorable Mention: Della Huntley of Baxter Academy. Honorable Mention: Alexis Milem of Thornton Academy. Honorable Mention: Kaylee Demers of Falmouth High School.

Second District: Winner: Whitney Perkins. First Runner Up: Sophia Carson of Edward Little High School, Second Runner Up: Ella Shaffer of Rangeley Lakes Regional School. Honorable Mention: Lexi Bachelder. Rangeley Lakes Regional School. Honorable Mention: Ruoxuan Zhang of Lee Academy, Honorable Mention: Addaline Hemmingway of Rangeley Lakes Regional School.

Click here to view student’s artwork in a virtual gallery

The Congressional Arts Competition was started in 1982 to honor the arts and talents of students nationwide. The Maine Arts Commission works closely with Congresswoman Chellie Pingree’s and Congressman Jared Golden’s offices to administer the program. The Arts Commission also partners with the Maine College of Art (MECA) and the National Scholastic Art and Writing Awards to help with the process of selecting the artwork. Two art professionals from each district are chosen to jury artwork from that district. It is “blind” jurying in which the judges only see the title, size and medium of each piece. This year they convened online to review and discuss digital images to decide. Placements are first, second, third and then three honorable mentions.


Arts Engage ME

February 27, 2019

Cultural Sector Network Meeting

Folks traveled from all parts of Maine for the Cultural Sector Network Meeting earlier this week. Maine Arts Commission Executive Director Julie Richard provided a presentation on the state budget which included how the Arts Commission is funded.

Nina Ozlu Tunceli

Traveling from DC for the meeting was the Executive Director of the Americans for the Arts Arts Action Fund, Nina Ozlu Tunnel provided an update on the federal budget.

Special guest Congresswoman Chellie Pingree was present to provide the Congressional outlook. Those attending joined in celebrating the congresswoman’s role as the Co-Chair of the House Congressional Arts Caucus.

Also in attendance and speaking were staff from Senator Collins and Senator King’s offices.

Everyone is looking forward to Arts & Culture Day planned for the State House on April 22. If you’re interested in participating please contact the Maine Arts Commission.



In Today’s News

April 20, 2018

Congresswoman Chellie Pingree

Some great news for Maine arts!– Maine’s Congresswoman Chellie Pingree is named Co-Chair of the The Congressional Arts Caucus. Maine now has two of its congressional delegation representing the arts: U.S. Senator Susan Collins in the Senate, and Chellie Pingreein the House.

Congressional Art Awards

May 19, 2016

Congrats high school artists

It was so wonderful to see high school artists being recognized at a ceremony at the Blaine House earlier this week. Each year two pieces of high school student artwork are selected to be displayed in the Cannon Tunnel of the U.S. Capitol for a year beginning in June as part of the Congressional Art Awards. One piece is selected from each of Maine’s Congressional districts. CONGRATULATIONS to the students listed below for their recognition.

JoJo Zeitlin, Cape Elizabeth High School

JoJo Zeitlin, Cape Elizabeth High School

District 1 represented by Congresswoman Chellie Pingree

  • Selected Artist: JoJo Zeitlin, Cape Elizabeth High School, grade 11. Art Teacher: Richard Rothlisberger
  • 1st Runner up: Anna Callahan, Brunswick High School, grade 10. Art Teacher: Allison Price
  • 2nd Runner up: Abigail Stevens-Roberts, Thornton Academy, grade 12. Art Teacher: Dana Altman
  • Honorable Mention: Caitlyn Duffy, Gorham High School, grade 12. Art Teacher: Chris Crosby
  • Honorable Mention: Gabriel Rosen, Portland High School, grade 12. Art Teacher: Barbara Loring
  • Honorable Mention: Katie Sprague, Kents Hill School, grade 11. Art Teacher: Babs Wheelden

Michaela Shorey, Rangeley Lakes Regional School

Michaela Shorey, Rangeley Lakes Regional School

District 2 represented by Congressman Bruce Poliquin

  • Selected Artist: Michaela Shorey, Rangeley Lakes Regional School, grade 12. Art Teacher: Sonja Johnson
  • 1st Runner up: Rachel Flannery, Lewiston High School, grade 12. Art Teacher: Nathaniel Meyer
  • 2nd Runner up: Chandler Clothier, Lewiston High School, grade 12. Art Teacher: Sarah Stocker
  • Honorable Mention: Olivia Berger, Hebron Academy, grade 12. Art Teacher: Jeanine Eschenbach
  • Honorable Mention: Alanna Fellows, Lewiston High School, grade 12. Art Teacher: Nathaniel Meyer
  • Honorable Mention:Shin Hye Hwang, Hebron Academy, grade 12. Art Teacher: Jeanine Eschenbach

A great big thank you to the teachers, parents and other adults who support these students and their artistic endeavors. Each student received a certificate of award and a scholarship to the Maine College of Art. The two students representing Maine’s Congressional Districts and one guest will be flown to Washington, D.C. for the official opening of the show in June.

The Maine Arts Commission partners with the Maine College of Art and the National Scholastic Art and Writing Awards to select the artwork. Gold and silver winners from the Maine Regional Scholastic Art Awards are automatically submitted to be juried in February for the Congressional Art Competition.

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