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Latino Art Beat competition winners express Hispanic heritage through art

By Deysi Cuevas, trad. Víctor Flores
EXTRA news

CHICAGO — Founded in 1998 by Don Rossi Nuccio and Daniel Oscar Cisneros, Latino Art Beat is a not-for profit arts organization aimed at encouraging high school students’ artistic talents. In May of each year, Latino Art Beat holds an art competition for high school students in Illinois and other cities including Houston, Los Angeles, Miami and Washington D.C.

The national competition categories are: drawing and painting and film and animation. Students participating in the Chicago area can submit entries in 3-D Artwork, 3-D sculpture, computer generated art and photography.

All entries must have the same theme: “What Hispanic heritage and culture means to me!” This year, Latino Art Beat received over 1,000 entries and each region selects a first, second and third place winner as well as several Honorable Mentions.

This year’s first place winner is Giselle Suarez, a 2011 graduate of Hoffman Estates high school. Suarez’s artwork is titled “Padre de la Patria Mexicana.” It is an oil painting depicting the life of Padre Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, a Mexican priest and a leader of the Mexican war of Independence. “It symbolizes what Miguel Hidalgo did for Mexico and how he got everyone together,” states Suarez.

Suarez, whose brother encouraged her to participate in the Latino Art Beat competition, defines art as a way for people to express themselves uniquely and thinks that art is something that anyone can create.

“It’s a way to express yourself. There is no limit in art; you can do what you like and if you really like it, then stick to it,” she said.

Suarez began using art as a form of expression when she was eleven years old and states that she and her brother were always excited whenever they were assigned an art project in elementary school. Now, Suarez’s …

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