EchoPark celebrates the creativity of art students with a mural at the Tampa store

EchoPark Automotive Tampa will soon become much more colorful, thanks to the creativity of local high school students.

The site, which is part of the Sonic Automotive segment specializing in the retail of used vehicles, has announced the winners of a student mural competition celebrating the car and the importance they have in our daily lives.

The goal of the competition was for art students at Howard W. Blake High School to develop a mural design on the outside wall of the salon.

According to a press release, 88 students gave their visual interpretations of cars in today’s culture with a tribute to Tampa.

The designs of the finalists were posted on Instagram for public voting. Artists for the first three designs with the most votes will receive a commission, and their designs will be merged into one mural.

The winners are:

Valentina Sarrin – 11.r

Phillip Woodside – 11th grade

Vittoria Haynes – 11th grade

The mural will be painted by local artist Carlos Pons, and EchoPark Tampa has teamed up with high school art teachers Blake Molly Dressel and Linda Galgani to get their students to participate in the competition.

“Community involvement is at the core of our business,” EchoPark Tampa CEO Todd DeVoogel said in a statement. “We felt that a mural designed and executed by local students and a local artist would be a great project to inject energy into the community.”

Mural painting begins this month and is expected to take 45 days.

EchoPark Tampa is located at 4636 N. Dale Mabry Highway, and the mural will be very visible to cars passing a busy road.

Sonic pointed out that all students who applied for the competition will get the opportunity to participate in a mural painting day under the mentorship of Pons.

EchoPark also makes a donation to the art department of Blake High School. The school curriculum includes a magnetic performing and visual arts program in which any student in Hillsborough County Public School District can audition.

“EchoPark has been an excellent partner in this project,” Dressel said in a statement. “I am so pleased that our students have been given the opportunity to participate in this creative way to express the intersection of travel (cars) and art.”

Pons is a painter and multimedia artist currently working in the Tampa Bay area. Born in Guatemala City, he is a self-taught artist whose work reflects the illusion of reality and human experience. His murals can be seen in the Orlando and Tampa Bay areas.

“Art enriches our lives, our communities and connects us all,” said Sonica CEO David Smith. “It’s inspiring to see the creativity, energy and fresh vision of our industry reflected in the mural submissions, and we’re excited to be able to share the winning designs with our guests and the Tampa community.”

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