Congressman Stephen F. Lynch (D-MA) announced today that James P. Leonard of Highland Street in Avon won first place in the Ninth Congressional District in this year’s Congressional Art Competition. 

The annual national art competition, called "An Artistic Discovery,” is open to all high school students across the nation.  One piece of artwork from each Congressional District is selected to be hung in the U.S. Capitol in Washington for one the year.

This year, dozens of entries came in from across Congressman Lynch’s district, and the judges, a group of leading local artists, had a difficult job in selecting the 2006 winner.

In the end, they selected an acrylic painting entitled "Self-Portrait with Vision” by James Leonard, a junior at Avon Middle/High School.

Congressman Lynch said, "Jimmy Leonard is a truly gifted young artist, and he is a wonderful reflection of his parents, Christine and Robert Leonard.  In addition, his work reflects the superb instruction of his art teacher at Avon Middle/High School, Virginia Mahoney.  I hope that his success will encourage other students from Avon and across the Ninth District to continue their pursuit of the arts.”

Congressman Lynch noted that the competition had been very tough this year, and there were a large number of outstanding submissions.  As a result of the high quality of the artwork, Lynch has arranged for all of the students' entries to be displayed at their respective town halls this summer.

Congressman Lynch said, "It’s obvious from this competition that we have some gifted young artists in the Ninth Congressional District.  No doubt, their ability is due in large part to the support of their parents and their extraordinary art teachers.”