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Hartzler Announces Congressional Art Competition Winners

April 21, 2021
Press Release

Washington, DC—Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (MO-04) announced the winners of the 39th annual Congressional Art Competition for Missouri’s Fourth Congressional District. High school students from local school districts submitted artwork that was judged at the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg exhibition. Each year, students are presented with a different theme for the district art competition. This year’s theme was centered around Missouri’s bicentennial.


Buffalo High School senior Grace Mayton placed first in the competition with her acrylic and oil painting entitled, “Early Bird.” The painting features an almost photographic image of an eastern bluebird surrounded by white hawthorn blossoms in the morning light. She is planning on attending Ozarks Technical Community College (OTC) to study art.


Second place was awarded to Cairo native Emily Decoske of Northeast High School. Her watercolor and ink artwork titled “Fishing Trip” captures a moment in early spring. The watercolor painting features a fisherman dragging a canoe downstream, touched with green and pink, with reflections of leaves and redbud petals.


Jalynn Buell finished in third place. She is a senior at Leeton High School who drafted a pastel portrait of Missouri native and former U.S. President Harry S. Truman. The portrait of the 35th president, entitled “Truman,” features a view from the shoulder in black and white.


The People’s Choice Award was given to Tipton High School student Erica Harkins for her piece entitled, “It’s all in Missouri: Rails & Roads.” The artwork features the contours of the state, surrounded by significant symbols from Missouri such as the first ice cream cone, the B-2 Stealth Bomber, and the state flower.

Artwork from the first-place winner will be featured inside the U.S. Capitol Complex in Washington, DC. Second and third place pieces will be featured in Congresswoman Hartzler’s congressional district offices located in Harrisonville and Columbia. Finally, the People’s Choice winner, chosen among constituents on Facebook, will be placed inside Congresswoman Hartzler’s Washington, DC office.

A former high school teacher at Lebanon and Belton High Schools, Hartzler enjoys giving local students the opportunity to participate in the art competition. Over 650,000 high school students have participated in the Congressional Art Competition since 1982. Each winner from any of the nation’s 435 congressional districts in the U.S. House of Representatives will have their artwork featured in the tunnel connecting the House Office Buildings to the U.S. Capitol.