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Art & Culture

2020 TWAC Student Art Scholarship Winners Announced

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THE WOODLANDS, TX – One of the most important outreach programs of The Woodlands Arts Council (TWAC) is the awarding of thousands of dollars in art scholarships to local graduating high school seniors. This year, in celebration of The Woodlands Waterway Arts Festival’s 15th Anniversary, TWAC is awarding one winner a $15,000 scholarship in addition to other awards totaling nearly $30,000. The winner of this outstanding honor is Rylee Hollis of The Woodlands College Park High School.

“Awarding art scholarships to talented students is one of our organization’s key contributions to the future of the arts in our community and beyond,” said Dr. Maria Holmes, President of Board of TWAC. “Our board and staff are dedicated to keeping this very worthwhile program going strong, even in these challenging times. It is our mission and our legacy to encourage arts education and to support emerging artists in everything we do. Since we began the scholarship program 14 years ago, we have awarded a total of $298,000. Our heartfelt thanks to our generous friends and sponsors for helping make this possible over the years.”




Applicants were evaluated in areas including but not limited to: 2D Art, 3D Art, Digital Art, Photography, and Literary Arts. The entries were judged on artistic merit as well as their potential to add to the cultural voice of our community.

Eligible students began submitting art portfolios in a variety of media to the Council earlier this year, to be judged by a panel of five professionals in the arts including Glade Gallery curator Joseph Staley; retired CISD English teacher Cathy Smith; professional painter Patty Burroughs; professional photographer John Hallett; and retired CISD Art teacher, Betty Arnold.

Rylee Hollis - Typical Day Through the Forest TWAC
Typical Day in the Forest, digital art by Rylee Hollis

Additional winners include:

  • Crystal Scott, The Woodlands High School – $2,000
  • Maya Furtado, The Woodlands College Park High School – $2,000
  • Evie Linantud, The Woodlands High School – $2,000
  • Mia Robertson, The Woodlands College Park – $2,000
  • Sidney Boyles, The Woodlands High School – $1,000
  • Cross Lawn, The Woodlands High School – $1,000
  • Madeline Sinkovic, The John Cooper School – $1,000
  • Abigail Bagnoli, The Woodlands Christian Academy – $1,000
  • Quifan (Cathy) Zhang, The John Cooper School – $750
  • Ignacio Arias Valdivia, The Woodlands High School – $750
  • Spencer Johnson, The Woodlands High School – $750

Honorable Mentions:

  • David Pinedo, Caney Creek High School
  • Melanie Lopez, The Woodlands High School
  • Anthony Weeks, The Woodlands High School
  • Marisol Villareal, The Woodlands High School




The Woodlands Arts Council is the producer of The Woodlands Waterway Arts Festival, an award-winning juried arts festival normally held each spring. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 Festival has been rescheduled for Saturday, October 17 and Sunday, October 18, 2020. To learn more and stay updated visit

Like all nonprofits during this challenging time, donations and sponsorships are needed to continue The Arts Council’s events and community programs. To join Friends of the Arts Council and the hundreds of volunteers needed during the festival, visit the website at

The Woodlands Arts Council provides regional, cultural and educational enrichment opportunities that encourage, support and promote the performing and visual arts in our community. From the award-winning Woodlands Waterway Arts Festival to public art installations and the year-round community and educational outreach programs of Because Art Matters, the council has one primary goal….making our community better, Because Art Matters! For more information, visit