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Bayside student who won congressional art contest to have artwork displayed in U.S. Capitol

Meng with (left to right) the first, second and third place winners of her art competition. (Photo courtesy of Meng's office)

A Bayside teenager will soon have her artwork displayed at the U.S. Capitol after winning an annual high school art contest.

On Tuesday, Aug. 31, Congresswoman Grace Meng announced that 11th-grade student Natalie Huang won first place in District 6. Huang’s watercolor piece, entitled “Arrival of Spring,” was submitted as part of the U.S. House of Representatives’ national Artistic Discovery contest.

As the winner, Huang’s artwork will be displayed within the halls of the Capitol for one year, along with the works of other contest winners from congressional districts across the nation.

“The pandemic has provided me with the time and space to create art, and I am so happy that my artwork can be shared for all to see in the nation’s capital,” said the Friends Academy junior. “I thank Congresswoman Meng for this wonderful opportunity and honor.”

Meng announced the winner of the Artistic Discovery contest at an outdoor reception at Flushing Town Hall for students and their families, art teachers, principals and school administrators.

“I am proud to congratulate Natalie Huang for winning this year’s art contest,” Meng said. “The COVID-19 crisis has allowed our youth to take the time to discover new skills and perfect others. Natalie’s artwork is an exceptional piece that symbolizes the hope that spring beauty brings — a hope that we all need in order to get through this pandemic together.”

Natalie Huang’s winning artwork. (Photo courtesy of Meng’s office)

The second- and third-place students were both seniors from St. Francis Preparatory High School in Fresh Meadows. Kaitlyn Murphy earned second with her piece “Elmhurst 2020” and Emilio Espinal-Santiago earned third with his piece “Loss and Renaissance.”

Students submitted works in several mediums including oil, watercolor and acrylic paintings, collages, drawings and prints. Judging for the contest took place at Flushing Town Hall and all who entered were presented with certificates of congressional recognition.

More than 650,000 high school students from across the United States have participated in the Artistic Discovery contest since its inception in 1982.

“I thank all the students for their participation, and I am proud of all of the future artists from our communities. I’m glad that despite the pandemic, we were still able to hold the art contest for local students, so that we can continue to recognize their wonderful artistic talents,” Meng said.

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