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The annual congressional art competition, which brings together the best student artwork from across the Tenth District, features a $5000 scholarship (per year) to the Savannah College of Art and Design as the top prize. In addition to the scholarship, the winning entry will be hung, along with entries from other congressional districts, in a corridor of the U.S. Capitol Building.

Contest Guidelines

  • The competition is open to high school students only. Exceptions will be made for schools that have 7th through 12th grades in one building. Each student that enters the contest must reside in the Tenth Congressional District.
  • The winning student will be invited to attend the ribbon cutting ceremony and reception in Washington, D.C. on June 28, 2007.
  • In order to allow an artwork to hang in the Cannon Tunnel of the U.S. Capitol, the following restrictions are necessary:
    • Piece must be two-dimensional.
    • Each piece can be no larger than 30 inches to the outside dimensions of the frame 
    • No more than four inches in depth Artwork must arrive in Washington by the time specified and framed to the appropriate guidelines (see below)
  • Artwork will hang in the Capitol for the entire year of the exhibition and cannot be returned to the students earlier. Students, therefore, should submit artwork they will not need for other purposes.
  • Artwork categories are as follows:
    • Paintings: oil, acrylics, watercolor, etc.
    • Drawings: pastels, colored pencil, pencil, charcoal, ink, markers.
    • Collage: must be two-dimensional.
    • Prints: lithographs, silkscreen, block prints.
    • Mixed Media: use of more than two mediums such as pencil, ink, etc.
    • Computer generated art.
    • Photography
  • A copy of the Student Release Form, signed by both the teacher and the student, must be attached to the artwork to certify the originality of the piece.
  • Each entry must be an original in concept, design and execution and may not violate any U.S. copyright laws.
  • Note: Any entry which has been reproduced from an existing photo, painting, graphic, advertisement or any other work produced by another person is a violation and will not be accepted.
  • The final decision regarding the suitability of all artworks for the exhibition in the Capitol will be made by a panel of qualified persons chaired by the Architect of the Capitol.

Framing Guidelines

  • All artwork, except for oil paintings, must be protected by Plexiglas or glass frame.
  • All works, when framed , should be no larger than 30 inches high, 30 inches wide, and 4 inches deep including the outside dimensions of the frame. Please double check size before sending the entry to Washington . Due to wide participation of Member offices, framed work larger than the specified dimensions will not be accepted.
  • Frames should be kept as simple and sturdy as possible. Metal frames are recommended.
  • No "snap on" frames with glass are to be used.
  • Plexiglas is better to use than glass over the artwork to avoid breakage. If glass is used, cover the entire surface completely with masking tape prior to shipping.
  • Matting can enhance or detract from a work of art and should be carefully prepared.
  • Use sturdy picture hangers. Two hooks should be attached at the right and the left sides of the back of the work in order to prevent the work from leaning forward or hanging unevenly.
  • Since frames will be suspended by wire from overhead molding, please do not put wire between hooks.
  • Do not attach labels, ribbon, etc. to the front of the piece or underneath the glass or Plexiglas.
  • If the artwork is abstract in design, please indicate on the back side which side is up with arrows.
  • As directed by the House Oversight and Standards of Official Conduct Committees, each district winner is responsible for framing his or her own entry. Any hardship cases should be assigned at the district level; works cannot be framed by the Architect of the Capitol.
  • A copy of the Student Release Form must be attached to the back of the artwork along with the adhesive label as shown (link to form at bottom of this page). A copy will be retained in Congressman McHenry’s office.
  • Please use the largest label you have available.

Adhesive Label

Member Name: Congressman Patrick McHenry

State and District: NC-10

Title of Piece:


Student Name:

Student Address:

Phone Number:

Suitability Guidelines

  • As outlined in these guidelines, the final decision regarding suitability for exhibition in the Capitol is left to the panel of qualified persons chaired by the Architect of the Capitol. While it is not the intent to censor any artwork, we do wish to avoid artwork that is potentially inappropriate for display in the Capitol.
  • Artwork must adhere to the policy of the House Office Building Commission. In accordance with this policy, exhibits depicting subjects of contemporary political controversy or sensationalistic or gruesome nature are not allowed. It is necessary that all artwork be reviewed by the panel chaired by the Architect of the Capitol and any portions not in consonance with the Commission's policy will be omitted from the exhibit.

All entries must be received in my Hickory District Office by Wednesday, April 4, 2007. If you have any questions, please contact my Hickory District office.

Click here to download Art Contest Student Release Form
  District Office: P.O. Box 1830, 87 4th St. NW Suite A, Hickory, NC 28603 Telephone: 828.327.6100 Fax: 828.327.8311
DC Office: 224 Cannon House Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20515 Telephone: 202.225.2576 Fax: 202.225.0316