Google Honors Uvalde School Shooting Victim – ARTnews.com

Google Honors Uvalde School Shooting Victim - ARTnews.com

Google is honoring a victim of the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, by featuring a drawing by her on a dedicated memorial page.

In March, Alithia Haven Ramirez submitted a drawing as part of the Doodle for Google contest, which allows children to compete to have their work displayed on the search engine’s homepage. The work that the 10-year-old sent in features a girl and her pet sitting on a sofa, with the word “Google” spelled out on the wall behind them.

“I want the world to see my art and show the world what I can do, I want people to be happy when they see my passion in art,” Ramirez, who wanted to be an artist, wrote in her submission.

In May, a gunman opened fire in Robb Elementary School, killing Ramirez and 18 other children, along with two adults.

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“She was a very talented little girl. She loved to draw. She was real sweet, never getting into trouble,” Alithia’s grandmother Rosa Maria Ramirez said in an interview with ABC News. “She was drawing to be able to put her drawing in the Google. She was trying to win the Google [contest].”

While Ramirez’s piece did not advance to the contest’s final rounds, Google highlighted her work by displaying it on a special page intended to honor her and other victims of the shooting.

“In Alithia Ramirez’s 2022 Doodle for Google submission, she described her desire to show the world her art and everything she can do, and we’re committed to honoring those wishes and her legacy,” Google spokesperson Colette Garcia explained to CNN. “Her story and art profoundly touched us, and we wanted to honor her family’s request to share her unique talents that were so tragically taken as a result of senseless violence.”

Additionally, President Joe Biden vowed to hang one of Alithia’s drawings in the White House when he visited Uvalde.

Now in its 14th year, the Doodle for Google contest invites kids to submit drawings that, if selected, could be displayed on Google.com. This year’s theme is self-care, and the competition was overseen by actress-singer Selena Gomez, mental health activist Elyse Fox, and 2021 teacher of the year Juliana Urtubey. After narrowing the submissions down to 54 state and territorial winners, Google users voted on five finalists.

The national finalists, who each receive a $5,000 college scholarship, will be selected on July 28. The winner, who will be announced next month, will take home a $30,000 scholarship and a $50,000 technology package for their school, among other prizes; their artwork will also appear as a Google Doodle for 24 hours.

Google Doodles more often honor established figures; past ones paid homage to artists such as Rosa Bonheur, Paula Modersohn-Becker, and Pacita Abad. They have also been used to commemorate dates, events, and holidays.

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