Four students to visit Sacramento as part of David Labkovski Project


Cassia Ramelb

Senior Steven Guzman poses with his certificate for Outstanding Achievement and Contribution for the David Labkovski Project.

Alliana Samonte

On Monday, Principal Deb Smith and history teacher Francisco Ortega will be flying to Sacramento along with four students to represent the David Labkovski Project.

“We’re going to be giving examples and expressing our knowledge,” sophomore Sydnee Blueford said. “Representing by explaining what we learned, interpretations of the paintings and how (David Labkovksi) got interested (in art).”

The group of six will be flying to Sacramento on Monday and be back by Monday night. Senior Steven Guzman and sophomores Sydnee Blueford, Martise Johnson and Susannah Ness are the four students who were picked to come and present the Labkovski project at the California State Legislature’s House of Representatives as a part of the Holocaust Remembrance Ceremony.  

“Through (Labkovski’s) eyes, you can learn a lot about the horrible atrocity of the Holocaust,” Smith said.

Developed by Labkovski’s niece, the project’s purpose is to educate through Labkovski’s artwork. Labkovski was a witness during the time of the Holocaust and his artwork portrays his experience and survival. This year the program chose Daniel Pearl Magnet High School to collaborate with them for a second time.

“The experience is something I’m looking forward to,” sophomore Ness said. “Not only representing our school as a Jew but I feel my grandparents would be proud.”

Every Tuesday, Ortega’s second and sixth-period world history classes work on the David Labkovski Project. They do activities that correlate to Labkovski’s life, such as, creating a blueprint of his life, painting artwork similar to the artist himself and study his history throughout his paintings.

“One of the things I’m looking forward to is just feeling a lot of pride about our school being invited to do this,” Smith said. “Our students are going to act as curators for the members of the house and the public.”

The four students were chosen by the Director of Education and Curation, Stephanie Wolfson. These students showed their willingness to provide service, showed interest to the artist, paid attention and showed exceptional work and care for the program. Guzman has been part of the project for two years and is excited about being in the same environment where the state legislatures are in. He also the New Media Editor-in-Chief for The Pearl Post.

“The state house is an important building,” Guzman said. “Where state legislatures are, so it will be interesting to be in that environment.”