Mauian wins Congressional Arts Award

A mixed media piece titled “Take Off” by a Baldwin High School artist received the Congressional Arts Award from the 2nd Congressional District, Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard announced Saturday.

Megan Matsuoka’s work will be displayed for a year in the U.S. Capitol alongside winners of all other congressional districts. Her piece was chosen from 16 finalists in the district.

“I am extremely proud of Megan Matsuoka for her first-place piece, ‘Take Off,’ which is both beautiful and thought-provoking,” said Gabbard. “Megan’s artwork will certainly remind me of home as I pass by it in the halls of the United States Capitol, and I’m excited to show it off to my colleagues in Congress so they can see the tremendous artist talent that Hawaii students have to offer the world, as well as the strength of our local arts educators.”

Another Maui artist, Oriana Buika of Baldwin High, captured the “People’s Choice” award for her piece “Saumaiimaugaagaiilemoana: Cool Breeze from the Mountain to the Ocean.” The works of the 16 finalists were on Gabbard’s official Facebook page and the entry with the most “likes” by Thursday afternoon was named the winner. Buika received $100, and her entry will be the cover photo at the top of Gabbard’s Facebook page.

An awards ceremony was held at the state Capitol on Saturday. The 16 finalists’ entries appear on Gabbard’s Facebook page.