Whitehorse High freshman places 3rd in Utah art competition
By Rozanna Benally-Sagg
Special to the Times
MONTEZUMA CREEK, Utah
In the Montezuma Creek, Utah, community, where Georgiana Simpson teaches art at Whitehorse High School, she is providing learning opportunities in a supportive environment.
In particular, she encourages them to reflect on their own personal strengths as tools for success. “I encourage my students to use their strengths and skills to help others,” Simpson said.
This year, Simpson inspired freshman Leyonah Endischee to use her strengths as an artist to enter the Utah State Senate Visual Arts Scholarship Competition, in which dozens of high school students statewide compete for a chance to win scholarships and recognition. Endischee used this year’s theme of “Inspired Utah” to create a piece called “Patterns of Warriors” about the Navajo Code Talkers.
Her artwork, which incorporated a style of Japanese film and television animation called anime, depicted a single code talker with an array of colors and geometric design surrounding him.
Through her artwork, she wanted to showcase how the Navajo Code Talkers helped during World War II while also incorporating her cultural heritage into a modern art form. Her artwork won third place among the more than 200 submissions and among the winning artists, she was the only Diné student.
On Feb. 21, Endischee and 21 other artists from around the state were honored on the floor of the Utah Senate.