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General Land Office Art Contest
This spring is your chance to show off your artistic abilities while learning about America’s public lands.

The Bureau of Land Management, along with the Public Lands Foundation and the Center of the American West are hosting a juried art competition for Colorado high school students.

 Contest Themes

The General Land Office is commemorating its 200th anniversary in 2012. The General Land Office played a major role in the westward expansion of our country and oversaw the surveying, platting and sale of public lands. The themes for this art contest are based on the role the General Land Office played in the development of the American West:

1.       The value of public lands.

2.       Your personal experience or connection to public lands.

3.    How public lands are part of your family heritage and the role they play in your future.

About the Curriculum

The BLM created an educational presentation covering the history of the General Land Office and the BLM.  The presentation is designed as a self-guided lesson using Prezi that will provide background information and inspiration for the contest submissions.

The presentation was developed to incorporate as many of the State Education Standards as possible. It includes a variety of multimedia resources from the past and present. It is designed to fit in with American History classes and provides an overview of westward expansion.

View the Prezi here

Contest Guidelines

The art contest will include an electronic visual component and a written artist’s statement. The visual part of the contest could include photography, drawing, graphic design, video, animation, etc. The artist’s statement will consist of a written statement that connects the artwork to the contest themes.

The contest is open to all high school students who live in Colorado.

The following guidelines must be followed for the artwork:

·         Artwork must reflect the contest themes listed above.

·         Artwork must be original. Plagiarized work will not knowingly be accepted.

·         Initial entries should be no larger than 5 MB (BLM may request larger files from contest winners)

·         Please do not include any lettering, signatures or initials on the front of the design. Any artwork with such markings will be disqualified.

·         Entries must be submitted by email to

·         Entries must be submitted online or postmarked by May 31, 2012. 

Artist’s Statement Guidelines

·         The Artist’s statement should discuss how the artwork connects to the themes of the contest.

·         The Artist’s statement must be typed and may not exceed 350 words in length.

·         Artist’s statement must be submitted in conjunction with artwork.

·         Artist’s statement must be original. Plagiarized work will not knowingly be accepted. 

·         Artist’s statement will be judged based on spelling, grammar and writing style. 

This is what students need to include:

·         A completed entry form

·         The artwork

·         A 250-350 word artist’s statement


Submissions should be tied into or inspired by the BLM-developed curriculum.


The General Land Office commemorates its 200th anniversary in 2012
BLM Links

BLM Photo Library BLM Photo Library

BLM Video Library BLM Video Library

BLM Recreation Page Recreation

Volunteer for BLM Volunteer for BLM

General Land Office surveyors stand by their truck
An early homestead


1st place: $500 cash

2nd place: $250 cash

3rd place: $100 cash

Prizes are provided by the Public Lands Foundation.

The Center of the American West will judge the art contest. All entries will recieve feedback from the judges.


Winning entries will be displayed at the General Land Office Symposium/Student Congress, September 11-14 in Boulder Colorado.

Winning entries will also be displayed on BLM Colorado's website.

How to Enter

1. Review the contest rules.
2. Download and fill out the entry form (requires parent/guardian consent).
3. Submit artwork, artist's statement and completed entry form to Entries cannont exceed 5 MB in size.