“We the Young People” Art Contest

Democratic National Convention Committee, Fleisher Art Memorial and American Federation of Teachers Announce “We the Young People” Art Contest for Pennsylvania Students

Youth Art Contest to Challenge Youth Statewide to Artistically Interpret Convention Theme: “We the People”


The Democratic National Convention Committee (DNCC) and the 2016 Philadelphia Host Committee, in partnership with Fleisher Art Memorial and the American Federation of Teachers, unveiled an official youth art contest for the 2016 Democratic National Convention. Students from grades K-12 will be invited to create an artistic interpretation of the historic phrase, “We the People.” Fleisher Art Memorial, a community arts center in South Philadelphia, will curate and judge the first round of submissions. Submissions will be narrowed to a list of 57 finalists who will be evaluated by an honorary panel of judges determined by the DNCC and the Host Committee.

“Our nation’s commitment to freedom of expression has produced transformative art from a wide variety of disciplines for hundreds of years. I believe that the strength of our communities rests on the vision of Democracy that is articulated by our youth,” said Rev. Leah D. Daughtry, DNCC CEO.  “Young people in Pennsylvania are uniquely aware of the values upon which this nation was founded. I am thrilled that the Democratic National Convention is able to provide a platform for Pennsylvania’s youth to express their vision of America during what will certainly be a historic Convention.”

“The Host Committee is committed to a having positive impact on our communities, and this contest will be a great way to enable  children across the state to learn about the democratic process while exercising their creative skills, said Kevin Washo, 2016 Philadelphia Host Committee Executive Director. “We encourage children from throughout the region and across Pennsylvania to get involved and look forward to seeing their submissions.”

“America’s public schools are entrusted with a charge unlike any other institution’s: to educate our young people for their—and America’s—future. The arts have an essential role in this mission; they engage students, unleash creativity and inspire critical thinking,” said Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers. “Educators have fought hard for both funding for the arts and the latitude to include the arts, not just tests, in public schools. We are thrilled that the Democratic National Convention is providing this opportunity to Pennsylvania’s young artists.”

The “We the Young People” contest invites Pennsylvania students grades K-12 to submit an original artistic expression of the historic phrase “We the People”. Art will be selected, reviewed, and evaluated within the context of three grade-spans:


  • Elementary (K-4)
  • Middle School (5 -8)
  • High School (9-12)


“We are honored that the Democratic National Convention is engaging youth from Pennsylvania in such a dynamic and artistic manner,” said Elizabeth Grimaldi, Executive Director of Fleisher Art Memorial. “As the country’s oldest community art center, we are committed to ensuring that art is accessible to everyone and that it continues to be represented in every chapter of our history. We look forward to the unique and creative interpretations young people from diverse neighborhoods and communities will submit during this contest.”

All entries must be original and submitted on paper between the sizes of 8” x 10” and 9” x 12” and delivered to the following address by 2 p.m., June 30th:

Fleisher Art Memorial

719 Catharine St., Philadelphia, PA 19147

Attn: DNCC Art Contest

All art will be evaluated by a panel of judges along the following criteria:

  • Creativity
  • Demonstration of skill with materials
  • Adherence to the theme of the challenge

Contest winners will be publicly announced in July.

Details on requirements and rubrics can be found here.


About the Democratic National Convention

The 2016 Democratic Convention will be held at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia July 25-28, 2016.   Working in partnership with the Philadelphia Host Committee, the City of Philadelphia and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, our goal is to make this the most engaging, innovative and forward looking Convention in history.  The 2016 Democratic National Convention will leverage technology to take the Convention experience well beyond the hall in an effort to engage more Americans than ever before in the event.  With the birthplace of American Democracy as a backdrop, the 2016 convention in Philadelphia will highlight our shared Democratic values and help put the Democratic nominee on a path to victory.

The Democratic Convention is the formal nominating event for the Democratic candidates for President and Vice President.  At the Convention, the Democratic Party also adopts the official Democratic Party platform as well as the rules and procedures governing party activities including the nomination process for presidential candidates in the next election cycle.

The CEO for the 2016 Democratic National Convention is Reverend Leah D. Daughtry. The official website of the 2016 Democratic National Convention is www.demconvention.com.

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