Caldwell Arts Academy eighth-grader Lucy Hager and Tyler Legacy High School senior Ian Black are creators of artwork selected to appear in the Youth Art Month Capitol Celebration in Austin.

Hager said photography is a new skill that she enjoys building. She explained her piece titled, “Not Allowed to Cross,” is meant to encourage others.

“In America, there are huge racial issues, and the stop sign is like society telling him to stop, almost like don’t even try, but he’s still going. He’s still walking,” she said.

Black credits his love for music and his exposure to various artists’ work as the inspiration of his piece, “Hamartia.”

“My primary source of inspiration came from listening to music made by my favorite artists, specifically Frank Ocean, Tyler the Creator, Earl Sweatshirt, Kanye West, and Saba,” Black said. “I remember walking to the art room listening to Frank Ocean, and his music would put me into a very creative mindset. As far as the more technical aspect of the piece goes, a lot of my inspiration came from Superani (collective) artists like Katsuya Terada and Nicolas Nemri. My art teacher had also shown me an art piece called ‘The Painted Banner in the Tomb of the Marquess of Dai,’ and that heavily influenced the overall composition of my piece.”

Each year, public and private school districts across Texas submit artwork made by students across pre-kindergarten through twelfth grade, to be selected for the exhibition. For the last four years, the Texas Art Education Association has selected Tyler ISD students’ artwork to appear in the celebration in Austin.

“This is a huge honor. TAEA selected only 125 pieces to represent visual art education in Texas Schools,” Tyler ISD Director of Visual and Performing Arts Sandra Newton said. “Many Texas school districts did not have any artwork selected, but Tyler ISD had two!”

The 2021 exhibit begins with a display in the Lower Rotunda of the Texas State Capitol and then continues at the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum.