"Mi Cultura" by Audrey Gair garners national acclaim as the National Winner of 2011 Latino Art Beat

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“Mi Cultura” by Audrey Gair garners national acclaim as the National Winner of
2011 Latino Art Beat Competition

Miami-- Audrey Michelle Gair, a June 2011 graduate of the New World School of the Arts (NWSA) high school, Miami was selected as the  Audrey Gair and Visual Arts students2011 National Latino Art Beat competition winner. Gair’s artwork titled “Mi Cultura”, is an acrylic on canvas self-portrait in the style of Mexican artist, Freda Kahlo de Rivera (July 6, 1907 – July 13, 1954). Gair states that she got her “inspiration for the Latino Art Beat competition from her Latino culture (Costa Rican, Puerto Rican and European) as well as from other Latin artists, one in particular Freda Kahlo”. 

Audrey was awarded a combined scholarship, through the Maryland Institute College of Art (“MICA”) / Latino Art Beat scholarship partnership, of $168,000 the highest award ever given a high school artist through this milestone initiative. Audrey is currently a freshman at MICA in Baltimore, MD, her college of choice.

“As Latino Art Beat approaches its 15th anniversary competition it is pleased at the continuing enthusiastic participation in and the success of its regional and national competitions and initiatives. The dedication of students and teachers alike, across this great nation of ours, in entering this milestone competition is first-class. Latino Art Beat is grateful for the tremendous support which all its City, Department of Education and academic partners have given this initiative over the years. In particular, the great scholarship support afforded competition winners through its partnerships with Columbia College Chicago, Robert Morris University and the Maryland Institute College of Art (‘MICA’ Baltimore)”, states Don Rossi Nuccio, President of Latino Art Beat. 

The 2011 National Latino Art Beat awards ceremony was hosted during 2011 Hispanic Heritage Month in Miami to honor Audrey Gair in her hometown where Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado and the Miami city commissioners honored and feted the national winner; the other Miami competition winners and all the Latino Art Beat 1st Place regional winners in city hall. A further recognition of Audrey, the other Miami winners and all the regional 1st Place Latino Art Beat art competition winners was hosted the following day at New World School of the Arts in downtown Miami. A gallery display of the winning artwork and a presentation made in front of a packed student audience honored all the student winners. 

 NWSA has produced six national winners in the Latino Art Beat competition in the last eight years, who have all indicated the Maryland Institute College of Art as their “college of choice”. The Maryland Institute College of Art is one of Latino Art Beats premier academic partners. Audrey’s “Mi Cultura”, was featured in Latino Art Beat national print media including the 2011 Commemorative “Hispanic Heritage” art poster/calendar traditionally unveiled at the U.S. Conference of Mayors winter meeting in the District of Columbia.

Latino Art Beat is a Chicago based not-for profit national arts organization runs a national art competition themed "What Hispanic Heritage & Culture Means to Me". Latino Art Beat celebrates heritage and the student’s artistic talents while encouraging higher education through the award of scholarships, nearly $2 million awarded since its inception in 1998. LAB’s program gives students from Chicago, Houston, Miami, Los Angeles and Washington, DC opportunities for studies based on their artistic talent.

A Florida center of excellence in the visual and performing arts, NWSA provides a comprehensive program of artistic, creative and academic development through a curriculum that reflects the rich multicultural state of Florida. With programs accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art, Dance, Music and Theater, NWSA offers four-year BFA and BM college degrees. Through its rigorous curriculum and conservatory-style teaching NWSA empowers its students to become leaders in the arts. New World School of the Arts was created by the Florida Legislature in 1984 as a center of excellence in the performing and visual arts. It is an educational partnership of Miami Dade County Public Schools, Miami Dade College and the University of Florida.

For more information, please contact the New World School of the Arts visual arts division at 305-237-3649 or visit us at nwsa.mdc.edu. Questions about Latino Art Beat or the competition should be directed to Latino Art Beat at 773-291-6901 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Photo caption: “Mi Cultura” by Audrey Gair, New World School of the Arts, Miami [2009]. National winner of the 2011 Latino Art Beat Competition.

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