Rep. Sam Farr, D-Carmel, welcomed San Benito High School incoming junior Makayla Magdaleno, the winner of the 2016 Congressional Art Competition: An Artistic Discovery, to the U.S. Capital in Washington, D.C. on June 23. Her winning piece, “Red Sova”, will be displayed in the halls of the Capitol along with other students’ works from across the country. 

“This was my last year hosting the Congressional Art Competition and I continue to be amazed by the works by our local students,” Farr said. “The arts are an important part of the Central Coast’s identity and it is great to see so many young artists add their passion and talent to that rich tradition.”

Magdaleno also received a $3,000 renewable scholarship from the Savannah College of Art and Design. Fellow San Benito High School student Isabella Arreola earned honorable mention in the contest.

The annual Congressional Art Competition is open to all local high school students in the 20th Congressional district. A total of 21 entries were submitted from seven different Central Coast high schools. The entries were judged by Melissa Pickford, director of the Monterey Peninsula College Art Gallery.

The Artistic Discovery competition encourages and recognizes the rich artistic talents of young Americans. Students are allowed to submit various styles and types of art, ranging from paintings and drawings to photography and mixed media pieces. The winners are determined using criteria based on originality, skill of execution, excellence in use of materials and conceptual strength of the project.

The Congressional Art Competition began in 1982 to provide an opportunity for members of Congress to encourage and recognize the artistic talents of their young constituents. Since then, over 650,000 high school students have been involved with the nation-wide competition.

For more information about the competition, visit: