Byrne & Arts Council Recognize Middle School Aged Contestants at First Assembly Art Competition

Posted: June 17, 2021 in Community, Education, In the News
Assemblyman Byrne pictured  with contestants from the Assembly Art Competition and GFMS Art Teacher Ms. Swarm

(Mahopac, NY / Sunday, June 13th, 2021) Assemblyman Kevin Byrne (R, C, I, SAM, ROS-Mahopac) and the Putnam Arts Council hosted a ceremony recognizing contestants in the 94th District’s first ever Assembly Art Competition. Eligible contestants included students in grades 5-8 from both Westchester & Putnam Counties within the Assembly District.

“Throughout the pandemic our young people, like all of us, have been forced to endure through new unforeseeable challenges,” said Byrne. “Harnessing their creative abilities through the arts is one of many ways they have been able to engage with peers, develop their skills, and express themselves. Congress has long conducted an Art Competition for high school aged students, but we know our younger middle school aged students can be just as creative. This competition allowed us to celebrate that. Encouraging our young people to use their creative abilities in a positive way, and then watching them view their artwork in a professional gallery was truly remarkable. This was our first ever Assembly Art Competition, and it will not be our last. I’m grateful to the Putnam Arts Council for their partnership and I look forward to making this an annual tradition for our young people in the district.”

“The Putnam Arts Council was more than happy to exhibit artworks created by middle school students throughout Assemblyman Byrne’s District,” said Joyce Picone, president and executive of the Putnam Arts Council. “I have been involved, on many occasions, with the Congressional High School competition and am so pleased that this has become a new opportunity for younger emerging artists. Our council members who served as judges were all thoroughly impressed with the exceptional artwork presented by each of the contestants. It was a pleasure to partner with the Assemblyman and his office in support of this wonderful arts endeavor. I look forward to continuing this event in future years.”

The top contestants from the competition included:

Best in Show

Gabby Pena, 8th Grade

Harriet Tubman, mixed media

George Fischer Middle School

Carmel Central School District

Second Place

Alexandra Weiss, 8th Grade

Time Stands Still, mixed media

Mahopac Middle School

Mahopac Central School District

Third Place

Anna Greico, 5th Grade

The Clearwater, mixed media

George Fischer Middle School

Carmel Central School District

Honorable Mention

Iker Munoz Sanchez 5th Grade

Carmel Train Station, mixed media

George Fischer Middle School

Carmel Central School District

Participating students created and submitted artwork inspired by New York State history and government. The Putnam Arts Council displayed the artwork at their A. Eric Arctander Gallery so students, family, and visitors could view the artwork during the weeks leading up to the ceremony held this past Sunday. Teachers, students, and guardians seeking to learn more about how they can participate next year should contact Assemblyman Byrne’s office at 845-278-2923.

Additional Photos W/ Captions Below:

Assemblyman Byrne welcomes students, parents, and members of the Putnam Arts Council

Best In Show “Harriet Tubman” by Gabby Pena of GFMS

Various artworks from the Assembly Art Competition

The above information was previously distributed and made public for immediate release by the Office of Assemblyman Kevin Byrne