Academic Decathlon Art Competition
The Academic Decathlon is a 10-event competition for high school students. The purpose of the Decathlon Art Competition is to promote art in Madera County and to select artwork that will be used to create the program book cover, posters, and other printed materials for the 2021-2022 Madera County Academic Decathlon and Academic Pentathlon. This year’s theme is "Water: A Most Essential Resource."
Any Madera County high school student from a school with a Decathlon team is eligible to participate. A panel of judges will review entries. The Academic Decathlon curriculum outlines may be found by clicking on the USAD Curriculum Outlines. A signed release form is required for each piece of artwork. Form must accompany each entry. Art without a signed release form is not eligible for competition.
Deadlines and Instructions
- All entries must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, December 3, 2021.
- A hard-copy 8.5" x 11" portrait of the artwork must be submitted.
- Please submit a copy of the Registration and Liability Release Form with each entry (contact Kristi for the form).
- All artwork must be submitted to: Kristi Winter
Madera County Superintendent of Schools (MCSOS)
1105 S. Madera Avenue, Madera, CA 93637
The artwork will be judged on the following criteria:
- Execution of the theme: The theme for the 2021-2022 Academic Decathlon is "Water." More information on the theme, including the 18 selected art pieces, may be viewed by downloading various USAD Subject Outlines. Entries will be judged on how well they reflect the overall theme and style of the topic.
- Craftsmanship: Includes composition, form, technique, balance, proportion, unity and other qualities that reflect the artist’s ability to successfully create in the chosen medium.
- Creativity: The extent to which the student shows originality of idea, an unusual or diverse approach, and uniqueness in the artwork will be evaluated.
- Overall Impression: This includes the overall response to the art as well as how effective it will be as the selected image for the competition’s printed materials. In addition, judges will ensure that artwork is in good taste and contains appropriate content for high school students and the general public.
Exhibit and Awards
Select art may be displayed on the Madera County Superintendent of Schools art exhibit wall located on the first floor in the hallway. All artwork will become the property of MCSOS.
The following awards will be presented:
- Overall Excellence: This top award will be presented to the student whose artwork best represents the Academic Decathlon theme, and addresses concept, content, aesthetics, and design. The award-winning design will be reproduced for Decathlon and Pentathlon materials, including but not limited to: posters, event programs, and pins. The recipient will be honored with $100.00 and a plaque.
- Certificates of Participation: Award certificates will be delivered to teachers for distribution to all participating students.
Awards will also be presented for digital and traditional media (depending on the amount of entries). Up to two awards will be given in each of the following categories, as well as up to three overall Honorable Mentions.
- Concept and Content: This award will be presented to the student whose artwork reflects sophisticated integration and interpretation of the theme, relevance to social and artistic dialogue, as well as high quality mastery of the selected medium.
- Aesthetics and Design: This award will be presented to the student whose artwork reflects a sophisticated understanding of composition and principles of design in art making.
2021 Winning Entry
Madera High School
Previous Winning Entries
2019 Winning Art Entry
Chowchilla Union High School
2018 Winning Art Entry
Madera South High School
Rules and Procedures
Artwork must have the following characteristics:
- Original hand created artwork, computer generated artwork, or a combination of the two. Art must not contain duplication of artwork found electronically or in printed form.
- Artwork that makes a visual impact, and communicates with clarity the theme of the competition. The artwork does not need to include text. MCSOS will add the Decathlon theme, date, and location to create final printed materials.
- Artwork must be easily reproduced on posters. If selected, hand created artwork will be scanned and edited in order to meet printing specifications. Artwork need not be a collage.
- The resolution of all electronic artwork MUST be at least 300 dpi for the overall file and for any embedded images in the file.
- The size of the artwork must be 8.5” x 11” portrait.
2019 Overall Excellence Award: Efren Lopez, Chowchilla Union High
"What inspired me to create my piece was the different movements that happened throughout those years [the 1960s]. The movement, rhythm, and the colors played a big role in the creation of my piece. More and more the roles of people changed, people were looked at differently and they were a part of society at last."
-Efren Lopez, 2019 Winner, Chowchilla Union High School