Artist wins first place in citywide competition

Aztec student wins first place at Black History Month art competition

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Artist wins first place in citywide competition

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Inspired by the contributions of Nina Simone, sophomore Tania Casas painted a portrait of the legendary singer and activist for a citywide student art competition in celebration of Black History Month. Casas took home first place for her work.

“I chose to paint Nina Simone because I used to read about her a lot. She was a woman that managed to become a great musician in face of challenges. It inspired me that she was so involved in law, activism, and feminism,” Casas said.

This year, Ysleta Independent School District hosted the competition.

“Every year, the students have to do a piece promoting Black History Month, and this year’s theme was African-American musicians who changed the world,” art teacher Candace Printz said.

Sophomore Roussel Acosta received best in show for her painting of Hazel Scott.

“I chose to paint Hazel Scott. She has so much talent but not many know about her. She was so talented. She was a singer, jazz and classical pianist, and got a scholarship to Juilliard at the age of eight years old,” Acosta said.

Both students had a whole month to work on their art piece and time to reflect on why they joined the competition. The art contest made them understand how important it was to tell their subjects’ stories to others.

“It’s a way to highlight the accomplishments of the black community, because they never had the spotlight. It was always taken away from them. We need to show how they have helped us in society, and recognize their lives and contributions,” Acosta said.

The winners’ artwork is displayed in the SISD headquarters on Rojas.

I chose to paint Nina Simone because I used to read about her a lot. She was a woman that managed to become a great musician in face of challenges. ”

— Tania Casas, 10

Black History Month is celebrated in February because it is the birth month of two historical figures who made influential changes in the black community throughout the century. President Abraham Lincoln, who was born on Feb. 12, issued the Emancipation Proclamation which granted freedom to all slaves that lived in Confederate States. Frederick Douglass, who was born Feb. 14, was a slave who escaped his captors and became an influential author, abolitionist, and activist to end slavery and promote equal rights.

 

 

 

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Artist wins first place in citywide competition