SHADES OF PASTEL EXHIBITION
Artist Opening and Award Ceremony
Thursday, October 8, 2009
The day began with an under-painting lecture and demonstration by the show's juror, Richard McKinley. Many of our members signed up in advance for this event. Richard demonstrated what he refers to as a wet, drippy, runny, painting. It is amazing to watch his paintings emerge from such a loose yet poetic under-painting.
As the artist ceremony began people gathered into the main lobby of Strathmore Hall. Richard McKinley announced each award in turn while an image of the painting receiving the award was displayed on a screen for all to see. He informed the audience about the special attributes of each piece that led him to select it as an award winner. He described his feelings about being a juror as an emotional experience similar to, Sophie's Choice! He performs the task with the highest degree of humility. He asked us to remember that his choices are, one man's opinion on one day. There were many surprised artists as they proudly stepped up to receive their awards and terrific prizes provided by our generous sponsors.
Here is the list of Award Winners, the Sponsors and prizes received:
Best in Show: Lisa Mitchell, for "DJ" (a $1500 cash award)
1st Place: Loriann Signori, for "Topaz Serenity" (a $950 value, including a Holy Cow 78 Gift Certificate from Great American Pastels, an Air Float Systems gift certificate, an Ampersand Art Supply Pastel Board Set and a pad of Strathmore's Pastel paper)
2nd Place: David Lawton, for "Aden" (a $800 value, including a gift certificate towards a Heilman Designs Pastel Box, from Jack Richeson & Co. their Pastel Board Set and a (18) Unison set and a pad of Strathmore's Pastel paper)
3rd Place: Maria Marino, for "Soliloquy III" (a $650 value, including a Guerrilla Painter LLC ThumBox, from Jack Richeson & Co. their Pastel Board Set and a (18) Unison set and a pad of Strathmore's Pastel paper)
The Judy Pardue Memorial Award for Best Landscape: Tom Weinkle, for "To Basalt" (a $400 value, including a Terry Ludwig Pastels Maggie Price Greys (30) set and a pad of Strathmore's Pastel paper)
The Polly Mitchell Memorial Award for Best Portrait: Frank Kaifer, for "St. Alvin of the Station" (a $400 value, including a Terry Ludwig Pastels MPS Collection (60) and a pad of Strathmore's Pastel paper)
The Betty Knight Memorial Award for Best Still Life: Jean Hirons, for "Shore Houses" (a $400 value, including a Girault Greys set from Pastel Etc. and a pad of Strathmore's Pastel paper)
Award of Merit: JoEllen Murphy, for "At Ease" (a $225 value, including a gift certificate from Blick Art Materials and a pad of Strathmore's Pastel paper)
Award of Merit: Lisa Sheppard, for "Long Shadows" (a $225 value, including a gift certificate from Colorfin LLC for PastelMat or PanPastels and a pad of Strathmore's Pastel paper)
Award of Merit: Tatijana Jacenkiw, for "Lady of the Tramps" (a $225 value, a gift certificate from Dakota Art Pastels, a gift certificate from Blick Art Materials and a pad of Strathmore's Pastel paper)
Award of Merit: Dawn Capron, for "Along the Wye" (a $225 value, including a gift certificate from Golden Artist Colors and a pad of Strathmore's Pastel paper)
Award of Merit: Joyce Lister, for "Winter Light" (a $225 value, including a gift certificate, apron and tote from Cheap Joe's Art Stuff and a pad of Strathmore's Pastel paper)
The Pastel Society of America award of Merit: Gail Zinar, for "A Winter's Drama" (a $100 cash award from the PSA)
The Connecticut Pastel Society award of Merit: Mary Anne Warner, for "Lillies" (a $100 cash award from the Connecticut Pastel Society)
The Maryland Pastel Society Members' Choice Award: an even tie resulted in both Diana DeSantis for "Andrea" and Julie Hopkins, for Swamp River Reflections" receiving a $175 value award, one award composed of a Terry Ludwig Pastels Open Stock (60) set and a pad of Strathmore's Pastel paper and the other award the cash equivalent.)
At the conclusion of the ceremony people went off to take another look at the winning paintings that by now had been decorated with the winning award ribbons. Several paintings were sold at the show.
On behalf of the society we thank Dawn Capron for making this a special celebration for our members and the medium of pastel. It's a huge job that demands a high degree of organizational skills and Dawn has what it takes. A BIG thank you to Lisa Sheppard for contacting our sponsors, organizing the donated merchandise, decorating the packages and delivering all of the fantastic gifts to the show. The entire MPS board worked on this show to make it a success for the Maryland Pastel Society and all it's participants. We would also like to thank the Strathmore Hall and Julie Bramon, the Fine Art Director for their generosity in providing the gorgeous venue for our national show. What a beautiful backdrop for a stellar collection of pastel paintings.