Students Paint Private Brand Cow & Win $60,000


GRAND PRIZE Winner: Dairy Rhapsody by Alejandro Pulido – South Mountain High School

Pleasanton, California-based grocer Safeway and its Private Brand Lucerne congratulated Alejandro Pulido of Phoenix, Arizona for winning the $30,000 grand prize in the Lucerne® The Art of Dairy “Taste of Moo-sic” art contest. Students from California, Washington and Pennsylvania also took home prizes in one of the most unique and anticipated annual contests for art students across the country.

This is the fifth year for The Lucerne The Art of Dairy promotion. The promotion does an excellent job of involving students and the community in both Safeway and Lucerne as well as encouraging healthy living. While fostering the artistic ability of the students and highlighting the importance of art education in schools. It also gives high school students the chance to display their talents on an unconventional canvas — a life-sized fiberglass cow. 

Using the theme of “Taste of Moo-sic,” entrants were asked to illustrate their visions of music and dairy products using an outline of a cow as the canvas. From the more than 9,600 entries, 30 finalists were chosen to transfer their designs to giant fiberglass cow sculptures. A panel of judges reviewed the entries and selected contest winners who will share nearly $60,000 in prizes with their art teachers and their schools’ art programs. 

Grand Prize Winner: Alejando Pulido of South Mountain High School in Phoenix, Ariz. titled his work “Dairy Rhapsody.” The design, dominated by moody deep tones of red and blue, depicts a cow playing a saxophone and milky piano keys floating above an ice cream cone-shaped trumpet. Alejandro will receive $20,000 for his school’s art department, plus $5,000 each for himself and his art teacher. 

First Prize Winner: Tani Pettit of North Tahoe High School in Tahoe City, Calif. Tani, who named her design “Dark Side of the Moon,” painted the front of the cow to look like a gray-toned robot, while the back was decorated with vibrant musical instruments and cheery dairy characters. She said the images represent “the transition from a mechanical and controlled world to a world of music, art, freedom, and dairy.” She wins $5,000 for her school’s art department, plus $2,500 each for herself and her art teacher. 

Honorable Achievements

  • Grace Nguyen of Evergreen High School in San Jose, Calif. will receive $1,000 each for herself and her art teacher for Grace’s “Ballade Pour Lucerne.” The design shows singers crooning near a milk waterfall with floating music notes, giant cheese wedges and abstract images.
  • Chung-Yu “Mago” Huang of Interlake High School in Bellevue, Wash. Both Chung-Yu and her art teacher will receive $1,000 for Chung-Yu’s dark and moody “The Sound of Moosic,” which represents Greek mythology’s Euterpe, the muse of music, playing a song as she sits on the rim of a glass of milk.
  • Qin Liu of Northeast High School in Philadelphia, Penn. Qin painted an array of musical instruments and dairy treats for her “Drifting in the World” design, which is meant to remind us that “when the milk pours, when the world sinks, when we’re feeling sad, we simply remember our favorite music, and then we don’t feel so bad.” Qin and her art teacher will receive $1,000 each.

The remaining finalists will receive $500 U.S. Savings Bonds. Including this year’s prizes, Safeway has awarded more than $266,000 in prize money and funds for art supplies through The Art of Dairy Art Contest. 

Lucerne The Art of Dairy Contest Finalists 

  • Jennifer McConnell – Novato High School – Novato, CA
  • Tammy Do – Evergreen Valley High School – San Jose, CA
  • Von Dickens Ulsa – Farrington High School – Honolulu, HI
  • Ana Estrada – Olympian High School – Chula Vista, CA
  • Sang Lee – John Marshall High School – Los Angeles, CA
  • Christian Taylor – Blair IB Magnet High School – Pasadena, CA
  • Ashley Kasuyama – Walnut High School – Walnut, CA
  • Michelle Washington – Marantha High School – Pasadena, CA
  • Miguel Martinez – Perris High School – Perris, CA
  • Dorris Hwang – International Community School – Kirkland, WA
  • Emily Elizabeth Schneider – Lake Washington High School – Kirkland, WA
  • Maya Napoles – Inglemoor High School – Kirkland, WA
  • Kathryn George – Knappa High School – Astoria, OR
  • Anne Feeny – Lakeridge High School – Lake Oswego, OR
  • Jessica Lackey – Centennial High School – Peoria, AZ
  • Kylee Smit – Colorado Springs Christian High School – Colorado Springs, CO
  • Rose Szczur – Rampart High School – Colorado Springs, CO
  • Monica Heilman – William J. Palmer High School – Colorado Springs, CO
  • Bridgette Wilhelmi – Lincoln Way East High School – Frankfort, IL
  • Ashley DeVriar – Joliet West High School – Joliet, IL
  • Kathleen Morrill – St. John’s Catholic Prep High School – Frederick, MD
  • Jaynie Chartrand – Walter Johnson High School – Bethesda, MD
  • Sarah Dinh – South Grand Prairie High School – Grand Prairie, TX
  • Minsu Cho – Creekview High School – Carrollton, TX
  • Kingsley Onyeiwu – Westbury High School – Houston, TX

A panel of judges reviewed the finalists’ entries to select the winners. They included Mary Scott, Chair of the School of Graphic Design at the Academy of Art University San Francisco; Donato Cabrero, Assistant Conductor of the San Francisco Symphony; and a team of Safeway marketing and Lucerne brand development professionals.

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Christopher Durham
Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.