Filipino American student wins art contest in Queens

Congresswoman Meng congratulating art contest winner Amber Sevilla with Sevilla’s winning artwork. Also pictured is Sevilla’s dad: A. Redd Sevilla.
Contributed/Office of Rep. Grace Meng

Amber Sevilla’s “2:25 PM” to be displayed in the U.S. Capitol

U.S. Rep. Grace Meng (D-NY) announced on Tuesday, June 11 that Amber Sevilla, an 11th grader from Elmhurst, Queens, has won her annual art contest. Sevilla, a Filipino American, earned the top spot among entries from high school students across Queens.

The contest is part of “An Artistic Discovery,” a national art competition organized annually by the House of Representatives to showcase student artwork from congressional districts nationwide.

Sevilla’s winning piece, “2:25 PM,” is an acrylic painting based on a photo she took in April 2023. The artwork depicts a relaxed moment with her dad, capturing the beauty in everyday family experiences. This piece, along with winning artworks from other districts, will be displayed for one year in the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. Sevilla and the other winners will also be invited to Capitol Hill for a special ceremony later this month to celebrate their achievements.

Sevilla, who turned 17 the day after her win, is a student at the High School of Art and Design. She plans to attend art college and aspires to become an art educator or curator.

“It’s such an honor to be chosen as the winner of Congresswoman Meng’s congressional art competition! I was absolutely thrilled when I found out that I won, and I’m so excited to soon see my work hanging in the United States Capitol,” Sevilla said.

Meng announced Sevilla’s win during a reception for participating students and their families, where all entries were showcased. The congresswoman also presented certificates of congressional recognition to all 28 students from 18 different schools who entered the contest.

“I thank Amber Sevilla for entering my art contest and I’m thrilled to congratulate her for winning this year’s competition,” said Congresswoman Meng. “The artistic talent shown by the young artists who took part in the contest is outstanding, and every year I continue to be impressed and inspired by the amazing creativity that goes into all of the artwork. I commend each and every student who participated and I’m excited that Amber’s winning piece will be recognized and displayed in the Capitol for lawmakers, visitors and maybe even the president to see.”

“I’m extremely grateful to Isabella Bustamante, the Director of Teen Art Salon, for encouraging me to enter the contest. I also thank my other art teachers, James Harrington, Ashton Agbomenou, and Laura Blau, for helping me hone my skills,” Sevilla added. “I was born and raised in Queens, and it means so much to me to be able to give back to and represent my community in Elmhurst. In the future, I want to be a supportive, caring, and skilled art teacher, just like those who have always been by my side throughout my artistic studies in school, and winning first place in this competition is such an encouraging step in that journey.” n

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