Amo Announces Winner of First Congressional Art Competition


PAWTUCKET, RI – Today, Congressman Gabe Amo (RI-01) announced the winner of the 2024 Congressional Art Competition for Rhode Island’s First Congressional District — Burnout (Self-Portrait) by Vivian Wen. A tenth-grade Advanced Placement (AP) Art student at Barrington High School, Ms. Wen’s submission was selected by a panel of three local judges out of all the artwork received. Complimentary tickets will be provided allow the winner and a guest to join the Congressional Institute for a reception in Washington, D.C. in June.  

“In Rhode Island’s First Congressional District, we are proud to have a strong community of artists and creative visionaries who display their skills every single day,” said Congressman Gabe Amo. “This year’s winning submission by Vivian Wen is a fantastic reflection of the talent that our district is blessed with, and I look forward to seeing this piece on display in the U.S. Capitol. Thank you to all the students, parents, teachers, and schools that participated. I look forward to seeing what our young artists accomplish in next year’s competition.”

“This piece is part of my AP Art portfolio which is themed ‘Academic Validation.’ The painting Burnout is supposed to symbolize academic struggle and the idea of a metaphorical burnout, hence why a candle is continuously burning on top of my head,” said Vivian Wen, 10th grade AP Art student at Barrington High School. “It also represents the feeling of being overwhelmed and the burden of being burnt out by your academics. The painting itself is made with oil paint and fiber paste. The highlight of the painting is the lighting and contrast that I used to demonstrate emotions on a deeper level.”

“I am just so thrilled that Vivian was selected as the winner of this year’s Congressional Art Competition,” said Doreen Lindenburg, AP Art teacher at Barrington High School. “Her unique gift for color and contrast, combined with her work ethic and innate knack for thoughtful composition, make her extremely qualified to represent our state and our district in the U.S. Capitol. I couldn’t be prouder to have sponsored her submission, Burnout (Self-Portrait), which stands out as one of the most unique pieces I’ve seen produced in my 28 years as an art teacher.”

A painting in a frame

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The winning submission, “Burnout (Self-Portrait)” by Vivian Wen, a 10th grade student at Barrington High School


Each spring, the U.S House of Representatives sponsors a nationwide high-school arts competition. Since 1982, more than 650,000 students have been involved with this contest, also known as the Congressional Art Competition. The competition is open to high-school students in the 19 municipalities that comprise Rhode Island’s First Congressional District. The overall winner of the district's competition will be displayed for one (1) year in the United States Capitol as part of an exhibit that includes artwork from other districts’ contest winners.