William Wen, Priya Bhatia, Teagan Chow winners in B.C.’s ‘Democracy and Me’ art contest

THE Office of the Lieutenant Governor and the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia on Monday announced the winners of the Democracy and Me provincial art contest.

One winner has been selected in each grade category:

* Kindergarten to Grade 4: William Wen, Grade 4, Coquitlam

By Priya Bhatia

* Grades 5 to 8: Priya Bhatia, Grade 8, Surrey

By Teagan Chow

* Grades 9 to 12: Teagan Chow, Grade 9, Surrey

The contest invited young British Columbians to reflect on the importance of community connections, civic engagement and the rights and responsibilities of citizenship and democracy. Almost 200 entries were received from children and youth throughout B.C., representing nearly 30 different communities.

Final judging was conducted by Janet Austin, Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, Darryl Plecas, Speaker of the Legislative assembly and Jon Tupper, Director of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria.

“The breadth and quality of artwork received speaks to the engagement, creativity and diversity of British Columbia’s young people,” Austin said. “Our democracy and public institutions will be well served by these bright lights, both now and in the future.”

Contest winners will receive a trip to Victoria to see their artwork on display in the Parliament Buildings and will enjoy a special tour and lunch hosted by the lieutenant governor. Due to COVID-19, the awarding of contest prizes will proceed once it can be done safely in keeping with public health guidelines.

“I am grateful to the many teachers who helped co-ordinate student participation,” Plecas said. “The artwork demonstrates that meaningful discussions around civic engagement and democratic participation are taking place in our schools and communities.”

Tupper provided advice and served as an expert judge. “Art is such a powerful tool for sparking dialogue and opening minds,” he said.

An online exhibit showcasing the artwork of the winners, finalists and all eligible entrants is available on the contest website: www.democracyandme.ca