Great Neck and Manhasset Students Win Rep. Souzzi’s Art Contest

On May 9th, three students who go attend schools on the north shore of Long Island were winners of the Congressional Art Competition. The awards were presented by national representative, Tom Suozzi.

Kyra McLaughlin standing with Souzzi as she receives her certificate.

Kyra McLaughlin, a student at Manhasset High School, won the first prize. The painting was oil on wood and called it “Ticky-tac?” McLaughlin described her painting as “a crying boy sitting next to his Grandpa who, in his thick Italian accent, is offering him a ‘ticky-tac’ to cheer him up.” The painting also has special meaning to her, “My grandpa always carried tic-tacs around with him, and often used them to brighten our spirits.”

McLaughlin’s painting will be on display in the Capitol Building for one year.

Emphasizing the importance of the competition, Suozzi commented that, “Artists play an important role in society, and it turns out we have some pretty talented young artists right here in our district.” He continued, “All of the parents and teachers should take pride in themselves for supporting the artists in their lives.”

This special event took place in Dix Hills, at the Art League of Long Island. The teachers of the students who won, the parents, and school administrators came to the ceremony. There were thirty-nine contenders from sixteen different schools.

Honorable mentions were given to Isabelle Lin and and Sarah Tang. Isabelle Lin is a student at Manhasset High School. Sarah Tang goes to Great Neck North High School.

Isabelle Lin with her painting, “Who Am I / Who Am I?”

Isabelle Lin created a piece called “Who Am I / Who Am I?”. This piece involved acrylic paints. Lin also gave a description of her work. She stated, “a painted relief of my face and lively eyes placed over an American flag and a Taiwanese flag, the colors of the flag drip down onto my face, representing personal identities.” This painting will be on display at Suozzi’s office in Queens for the next year. 

Sarah Tang’s painting was called “Sunset in G-String,” which also used acrylic paint. Tang said that her work was about “a sunset sweeping over the music room at school – pink, blue, and warm yellow hues modify the natural colors of each surface.” Tang says that the music room in her school was the inspiration for this painting.

Sarah Tang standing with her painting, “Sunset in G-String.”

Tang said, “I chose the music room because I thought there was something really beautiful about how messy and energized it was,” Tang said. “I was really inspired by my school’s after school orchestra program, which sometimes runs late, and I’ve noticed the sun always sets really nicely in the music room, and that was the inspiration for my color scheme.”

She also wanted to thank both her art teacher, Joseph Giacalone, and her music teacher, Joseph Rutowski, who she credited for helping her in both subjects throughout her journey in high school.

Tang’s work will we displayed in Suozzi’s district office, which is in Huntington.  

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