Theresia Zhang, 22, an art student and resident of Baltimore, has won a new statewide art competition called “The Art of Racing”, held as part of the preparation for the 147th edition of the Preakness Stakes next month at Pimlico Race Course.
Zhang’s artwork, a digital painting titled “Speed,” was selected from 147 submissions to the competition and depicts a jockey on a horse in the middle of a race. The announcement was made today at the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA), where Zhang is a junior.
“Preakness is such an important part of the spirit of Maryland,” Zhang said in a statement. “I am thrilled that my piece has been selected to represent what the event means to the community.”
The competition was launched in January by a subsidiary of the Stronach Group called 1/ST and the Maryland Jockey Club, in partnership with MICA. The sponsors have called for applications from all artists in Maryland and set the deadline for March 2. The theme was a thoroughbred racing and Preakness artwork.
Once entries were submitted, members of the general public were invited to vote for their favorite work on www.preakness.com/the-art-of-racing. The top 10 voters were then judged by a panel of elected officials, community leaders and art professionals to select the winner. Today’s announcement was attended by Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott, representatives from MICA, 1/ST and Park Heights Renaissance, and other community leaders.
As the winner of the contest, Zhang receives a $4,000 stipend and two tickets to Preakness 147, the series of events that includes the Preakness Stakes on May 21. Additionally, his work will be featured on a curated collection of Preakness 147 merchandise that includes posters, journals, and t-shirts that will be available for purchase online and onsite during Preakness Weekend.
Proceeds from the sale of merchandise will be used to support the operations of Park Heights Renaissance as it finds affordable housing for families and provides employment opportunities for residents of Park Heights.
1/ST, pronounced First, is the “consumer-centric brand” of the Stronach Group, a technology, entertainment and real estate development company that operates Pimlico Racecourse and Laurel Park. Affiliates include 1/ST Racing; 1/ST Content; 1/ST Technology; 1/ST Experience and 1/ST Properties.
“The Art of Racing focused on bringing a design element to the Preakness while celebrating Maryland’s vibrant arts and culture scene by showcasing the talents of local artists,” said David Wilson, Director of marketing for 1/ST, in a press release. “All of the incredible pieces submitted reflect the rich heritage, diversity and optimism that connects Preakness to the community.”
“MICA faculty and students were honored to participate in the call for nominations tied to the tradition of Preakness,” said Tiffany Holmes, MICA Acting Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost. “Many of our students have risen to the challenge in The Art of Racing’s new competition and created a wide range of artwork that celebrates this Baltimore springtime event.”