Nine-Year-Old’s Depiction Of Slavery Wins White House Art Competition
A nine-year-old girl from Detroit won a White House art competition with her depiction of slavery.
Gabrielle Faisal recently emerged victorious in The White House History Association’s National Student Art Competition. Against more than 500 students from across the US, all submitting pieces of art judged for their ‘originality, interpretation and historical relevance’, the young girl came first place in her age bracket.
Gabrielle’s drawing shows a pair of Black, shackled hands holding up the White House against a backdrop of the country’s stars and stripes.
‘The Black hands holding The White House, that means the enslaved Africans built the White House,’ she told FOX 2. ‘The white stripes represent the purity of the struggle. The blue means justice, and the white stars represent unity for all people.’
Gabrielle was inspired by her father. ‘I have a home library filled with books on African-American history, Blacks who were a part of building the White House, so for her when it came time to do art, it was just organic for her,’ her dad Rashid Faisal said.
‘When I think about the large hands holding the White House, the hands are symbolic of our people, collectively, our history. And you have the background with the flag, and that is the unifying factor for all of us as Americans. Black history is not just for African-American people, it is for all people,’ he added.
While her family knew she’d made the final 10, they only found out about her win from the competition’s announcement online. ‘I was happy. I was really happy,’ she said.
In addition to winning $1,000, Gabrielle and her family are taking a trip to Washington DC to see the other finalists’ artwork on display in the White House’s visitor centre, available to view until September 22.
Her drawing has attracted praise online. ‘If some want to fog out their history knowledge, it’s on them. However, the art work of the artist says it all. A representation of everything from slavery to unification of Americans. She captured them in one flag. So haters in the house do your research correctly and educate yourselves of history and art interpretation. Good job Gabrielle,’ one wrote.
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CreditsFOX 2 Detroit
FOX 2 Detroit