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2023 Fourth Annual Art Bus Go Public Collaboration

2023 marked the fourth year Go Public hosted its annual Art Bus Contest with the Texas Cavaliers, VIA San Antonio, and Adsposure. The joint event on May 20th celebrated a total of 26 winners from the Cavaliers’ elementary art contest and Go Public’s high school arts spotlight. 


Two VIA Metropolitan Transit buses were revealed, featuring vibrant artwork on full display, wrapped around the exterior of the bus. Speakers from Go Public, NEISD, the Texas Cavaliers’ King Antonio XCIX, Southwest School of Art, Merrill Bank, and Emily Ann’s Family Foundation honored the young creatives. 


Certificates were distributed to the winning students, followed by life-sized photos next to the bus. Student pieces were also gifted on a smaller scale, with personal tote bags granted to each winner and available for public sale as well.

Alexa Villanueva poses with Scholarship Check
Art Bus

Young Artists Honored

Out of 290 entries, Go Public announced 15 winners. The top three contestants went back to school with scholarships for their artistry. Meanwhile, the Cavaliers donated $46,000 to the winning students’ school art programs.

  • With artwork entitled, “Cole Students,” senior Alexa Villanueva from Cole High School out of Fort Sam Houston ISD took home first place and a $250 scholarship. 
  • In second place, Chloe Sanchez, a Harlan High School senior in Northside ISD, received a $150 scholarship for her work “Dog Visit.” 
  • Isabella Lorenzana, a senior at Northeast ISD’s Madison High School, won third place for her piece, “Mother San Antonio.”

2022 High School and Elementary Art - Bus Wraps

Bus Wrap Full Bus Wrap Art
This is the third year for the Go Public High School Art Spotlight where student winners experience their pieces in a larger-than-life format on the exterior of a VIA bus.

Now in its third year, Go Public and the Texas Cavaliers teamed up with VIA San Antonio and Adsposure and featured 29 high school and elementary school art pieces wrapped around VIA buses.

In addition to the excitement of winning a place on the bus wrap, students saw their pieces up close. During the big reveal event, students took pictures with family and friends in front of their artwork. 

The reveal included the elementary school art winners from the Texas Cavaliers Art Contest and the high school art contest winners from the Go Public High School Art Spotlight, “Inspiring Kindness, Beauty, and Joy.”


What is a Bus Wrap?

Bus wraps are vinyl graphics that adhere to the exterior surface. Furthermore, a full wrap covers the entire exterior surface, like the Go Public project with VIA Bus San Antonio. And finally, a bus wrap provides a large- scale, mobile art exhibit. It’s a perfect way to promote student artists and talent.

The students who won both competitions submitted high resolution files. From there, Adsposure’s graphic designer used the files to create each side of the bus. 

In summary, Bank of America a Merrill Company and Emily Ann’s Foundation made wraps possible. Adsposure designed the graphics and installed them on the buses. 

Art Bus Wrap Go Public
Graphic Design Bus Wrap

2022 High School and Elementary Art - Bus Wraps

SCUC ISD Go Public
Sebastiano Formica from Byron Steele HS in Schertz-Cibolo-Universal City ISD won first place for his piece, "Kindness is Blind."

Go Public announced the high school student art winners on March 24th, 2022. The contest theme, “Inspiring Kindness, Beauty, and Joy” drew 89 entries and resulted in 18 winners. In addition to winning the VIA bus placement, each student’s artwork was featured on a tote sold to the public.


During the reveal event, three students with the highest scores received scholarship scholarship checks from Go Public: 

  • 1st Place – $250 Scholarship, “Kindness is Blind” by Sebastiano Formica – Byron P. Steele High School, Schertz-Cibolo-Universal City ISD
  • 2nd Place – $150 Scholarship,“Kindness” by Cadence Dawson – Virginia Allred Stacey Jr/Sr High School, Lackland ISD
  • 3rd Place – $100 Scholarship, “Joyous Memories” by Alyssa Gutierrez – Southwest High School, Southwest ISD

View all of the high school student winners here

Texas Cavaliers - Elementary School Student Winners

The Texas Cavaliers revealed the finalists and grand prize winner of the 2022 River Parade Art Contest on Wednesday, February 9, 2022, at the Southwest School of Art.

The grand prize winner was Sofia Liceaga, a fifth-grade student at Bob Lewis Elementary School. In addition to her artwork being displayed on a VIA bus, the Grand Prize winner won Whataburger for an entire year, $5,000 for her school’s art program, and a one-week scholarship to attend Southwest School of Art’s Summer Program.

Due to the generosity of sponsors and donors, the Texas Cavaliers donated a total of $46,000 to the school art programs of the winners and runners-up.   

Texas Cavaliers
Texas Cavaliers with Emily Ann's Foundation and Merill Lynch a Bank of America Company

2019 Bus Wrap Art Contest

Bus Art

Go Public’s 2nd Annual Bus and Billboard Showcase generated 220 submissions from high school artists throughout San Antonio. The billboards were featured throughout the city during the month of March. The VIA buses featured a beautiful array of talent, concepts, and subject matter. 

Student Artist Interviews 

East Central High School had three students’ work featured.  Below are their unedited thoughts on their art, what it means to them, and how being featured on a billboard or bus wrap affected them.  The buses will run for the next six months throughout San Antonio.

Elizabeth Caisedo, 11th Grade, Drawing 3 Pre AP, Painting 2 Pre AP, AP Art History

How long have you been making art? What media is your favorite?
Ever since I was about 4 years old I would draw for fun at home and school and ever since then I had the dream of becoming an artist. I don’t necessarily have a favorite media but I tend to use pen for a lot of artworks. I like to experiment a lot though.

What role does art play in your life?  What does creating and making Art mean to you?
Making art means I’m able to express the ideas and thoughts running around in my mind and turn them into something physical for people to see. It plays the role of being the voice to speak my creativity without all the words.

How do you see art as being a part of your future?
Art has always been my passion and I’m sure that’ll never change. Art for me is something I want to do for the rest of my life.

What does having your artwork selected for a billboard mean to you?
At the time that specific artwork on the billboard and many of my other ones weren’t really being recognized how I wanted them to be in some of the contests or events I would enter them into so finding out it got to be displayed as a billboard to me meant that no matter how down I was because of rejection to keep my head up either way because other opportunities will arise.

What are your goals for your future immediately after high school and what is your ultimate goal?
Hopefully to get into the art school of my choice and from there be able to inspire others through my works of art. Being able to say that I made it as an artist is something I strive for.

Do you have any special stories to share about your art making or your start as an artist?
My start as an artist was actually inspired by my brother wanting to be a car designer. I remember him having sketchbooks full of very detailed drawings of cars that inspired me to explore art. Every time he would leave the house to go to the store, hang out with friends or practice football, I would sneak in his room and steal his art supplies, take them to my room and make my own art. After I was done using his supplies, I would run back to his room and place the supplies exactly how I found them back where they were. I would sometimes get an adrenaline rush if I could hear his car pulling into the drive way early and I haven’t put anything back. ​

Jordan Orosco, 10th Grade, Drawing 3 Pre AP

How long have you been making art? What media is your favorite?
I’ve been making art for over 7 years now. I have been pursuing art for as long as I can remember, from random scribbles on paper to digital media on the computer. My favorite media of all-time would definitely have to be color pencils! It feels as if I’m painting with them.

What role does art play in your life?  What does creating and making Art mean to you?
Art plays a huge role in my life; it is my everything. Art has helped me overcome times of sadness, times of stress, times where I found myself in a ditch. Art helps me escape from reality. I’m free to enter a place of my own, my imagination: A place where I don’t have to focus on my worries or sadness, a place where I can create something beautiful. Being able to do that with art is what makes it so special to my life.

How do you see art as being a part of your future?
I see art being a part of my future as a way to help myself relax. A way I can spread joy and encouragement to others including myself. Whether it be family, friends, or even strangers!  I can imagine making pieces for others to enjoy.

What does having your artwork selected for a billboard mean to you?
My artwork being selected for a billboard means so much to me. I am incredibly honored to have this opportunity. It’s amazing to know my artwork will be seen and shared with people!  It means, as a young artist, that I’m growing.

What are your goals for your future immediately after high school and what is your ultimate goal?
My goals for my future after high school is to keep growing and improving as an artist, become successful in my passion, and bring joy to people with my art. My ultimate goal is to be able to make a living with what I love most and continue to make art until I cannot anymore.

Do you have any special stories to share about your art making or your start as an artist?
I can remember in the beginning I would draw in my little sketchbook every single day. It would make me feel so happy! I was, and still am, constantly inspired by other wonderful artists. I’ve had people tell me “you won’t make it”, “your art is bad”, “who would ever like this?” Look where I am now! I’ve learned to take that hate and turn it into a motivation. The hate I’ve gotten in the past has only made me stronger. I want this story of mine to inspire all artists, especially those who are starting out. Let hate be your motivator and make you become stronger. Don’t let other people discourage you. What you create is beautiful.

Sajayra Buenfil, 9th grade, Drawing 2

How long have you been making art? I have been making art ever since I was a small child.

What media is your favorite?
My favorite media is in-between Watercolors and Digital!

What role does art plan in your life?
A second career for me since I have a YouTube Channel!

What does creating and making Art mean to you?
Creating/art is something very special to me, I feel very connected with it as well.

How do you see art as being a part of your future?
I see it as being not only as a hobby but as a career as well!

What does having your artwork selected for a billboard mean to you?
It means so much to me, because I got recognized for a passion I really enjoy having. Also I hope it inspires others to know that when you work hard on something, you can always achieve it will just take time.

What are your goals for your future immediately after high school and what is your ultimate goal?
To go to Texas A&M so that I can become a veterinarian so that I can proceed with my other passion which is helping animals! As well as having my own vet place, I want to pursue my career in honor of my grandfather that has inspired me since I was a child, when I would go to our ranch. My grandfather has passed away sadly but I want to dedicate my work and passion to him!

Do you have any special stories to share about your artmaking or your start as an artist?
I don’t really have any, but I just want to let other young artist of any kind of art know that it is very possible to get recognized even if you consider yourself not good. Just believing in yourself can help so much without even thinking about it!!

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