In these times of isolation and quarantine, I want to thank the Kingsport Art Guild and specifically Janet Hartman for the opportunity to travel from my 9 acres in the woods north of Asheville to Kingsport. The road trip was a treat in itself! I was honored to be asked to judge the exhibition.
I really enjoyed seeing the show. I commend all of you for making art during these complicated times. As a practicing artist myself, it easy to get caught up in the current mess we are in. For me, making art has been some of the sanest activities I have been able to do. I hope for you as well.
After reviewing the show, here my choices;
Awards of Excellence
“Susan’s Lily Pond”-MaryAnn Grib
What a sweet little waterscape! She has a masterful touch with perspective and the color blue.
Award of Excellence
“Master’s Touch” – Renee Suich
I really loved the collage aspect of this work. The juxtaposition of the transparent dress form instructions and the landscape was excellent.
“The New Doll” –Tim Tate
This work proves that great things come in small packages. This tiny painting was missed on my first pass of the show. But it almost knocked me over the next time I came around. The trompe l'oeil technique was superb, but the subject matter kept me coming back to look. Reminded me of the days I spent fishing when I was a teenager. We were always seeking the magic lure.
“Reedy Creek Rooster Fish” – John Hilton
I really enjoyed the fantasy and humor of this hybrid creature. The technique was excellent (especially the feathers-as-scales) and I kept trying to understand the mind behind this drawing.
Best in Show
“Woman 2019”- Charles Peters
There is always a work in an exhibition that shows its power right way. The heavy texture, bold strokes, and the contemporary nod to Willem de Kooning made itself known as soon as I entered the gallery. In fact I tried to ignore it at first, but it kept pulling back to see more. To me that is always a great sign of a strong work.
Please know that my decisions are not universal truth, but opinions of someone who has made and taught art for over 42 years. Another judge walking through the exhibition would have made a different selection. Congratulations to the winners and congratulations to all who participated. I know it is a tad bit more difficult, but try to see the show in person. What the folks at The Renaissance Arts Center have put in place, I was very much at ease walking around the gallery.
Stay Safe and Keep Making,
July 9, 2020
3rd Place: Tim Tate - "The New Doll"
Award of Excellence: Renee Suich - "Masters Touch"
2nd Place: John Hilton - "Reedy Creek Rooster Fish"
Award of Excellence: MaryAnn Grib - "Susan's Lilly Pond"
BEST IN SHOW: Charles Peters - "WOMAN 2019"