By Diane Trepagnier, AME Director
The 52nd AME made a grand entrance as an in-gallery exhibit after the year of COVID. There are 57 paintings showing a wide range of subject matter and the beautiful talent of our members. Our esteemed judge, Michael Holter certainly had a challenge on his hands in selecting winners. We are very grateful for Michael stepping in at the last minute after the unfortunate passing of Kim Minichiello. Michael was very complimentary of the quality of all of the entries.
We are grateful for contributions from the estates of Stan Smith and Shirley Sterling. Nine art suppliers also made contributions allowing us to present 14 Merchant’s Awards totaling $2500.
Here are the winners along with comments from Michael Holter:
1st Place “Dining Out” by Less McDonald, Jr.
The scene is striking in how graphic it is, very realistic but not contrived to the point of photorealistic. Both composition and colors wonderful especially the complementary oranges and greens. This painting causes the viewer to pause as if being beckoned to walk into the pleasant setting.
2nd Place “Amo De Mia Vivo” by Daniella Werneck
This painting is very well crafted. The composition of the face looking at the viewer-but just off-creates interest. There is a softness achieved by varnishing that makes colors subtle but not washed out. There is a sense of a “story”, and the larger size makes it fun.
3rd Place “Eyrie” by Jackie Liddell
This is a small gem. There are lots of subjective things going on that create emotion - is that a bird’s nest on a rafter? Or cruciform with crown of thorns? The use of monochromatic color adds to the mystery, especially the spots of vibrant colors in the corners.
Shirley Sterling Memorial Award “San Antonio Winter” by Bill Curtis
The composition carries this painting. On one hand, the subject is simple, but there’s a lot going on between the warm sun and the cool shadows and the intensely graphic form of the tree.
President’s Award “Sindhi Villager” by Mohammad Ali Bhatti
This is a captivating treatment of a portrait. Animation is created by the off-center composition with the shoulders turned one way and the head another. The eyes are very well done and compelling, both looking at the viewer and through the viewer.
Director’s Award “Avignon” by Irene Sheytman
There is a lot of feeling this stylized approach to an architectural scene achieved through the off-center tower, the dynamic black drawing lines, and the use of vibrant colors.
Honorable Mention "Into the Glass" by Karen Lindeman
This painting creates a nice mood with its subtle, painterly brushstrokes and hazy distance.
Honorable Mention "Party Girl" by Cheryl Wooten
This is a lovely composition, especially the intimacy created through the tight crop and the light that brings the face forward.
Honorable Mention "Spring Joy" by Linda Jarnagin
This abstract tree works because the artist's application of colors and textures make for a fun and lively rendition.
Honorable Mention "Stairway Light" by Carla Gauthier
The light spilling from above, the reflection in the glass and the angular, linear perspective invite the viewer up from what otherwise could be a dim, forbidding entrance.
Honorable Mention "Supermoon" by Hiep Nguyen
This straightforward seascape includes a solid sense of place and moody sky that make the viewer wonder, "Where is this? What's going on?"
Merchandise 1 "The Big Splash" by Lynda Jung
The movement and pushing of the colors to their extremes make this an absorbing abstract.
Merchandise 2 "Two Together" by Rona Lesser
The lively looseness and casual gestures suggest a real-time drawing from life.
Merchandise 3 "No Need for Lemonade" by Larry Spitzberg
This large, fresh, painterly piece is a wonderful example of watercolor effects.
Merchandise 4 "I Am Outstanding in My Field" by Alison Hendry
Fur is often overworked, but this is a wonderful example of just the right touch, as well the eyes and nose are realistic without being overdrawn, making for an appealing piece.
Merchandise 5 "The Capitol at Twilight" by Zahid Shaikh
The simplicity of the presentation, punched up by the color of the background that is subtly reflected in the foreground, makes for a peaceful but strong nighttime scene.
Merchandise 6 "March Brown" by Richard Scruggs
The square composition works to enhance the closeup focus on the fly, along with the warm tones of the fly against the cool background color.
Merchandise 7 "Notre Dame" by William Epps
This grand subject is nicely treated with well-done architectural forms and details.
Merchandise 8 "Fresh from the Garden" by Debbie Ebeling
Orange-against-green, lost edges, curve of the composition and painterly texture make for a lovely piece.
Merchandise 9 "Cityscape Diptych" by MaryAnn Lucas
The liveliness of a city is created through the graphic shapes and vibrant colors.
Merchandise 10 "Cheers" by Fontaine Jacobs
There is a fun balance between the festive subject of the martini and the quiet white-on-white palette.
Merchandise 11 "Aubergine" by Darlene Dittoe
The dark background and diagonal composition create a dramatic setting for the striking aubergine flower.
Merchandise 12 "Backdoor to La Kings Confectionary" by Diane Peter
The depth of the passage into the interior is extraordinary in so tiny an architectural painting.
Merchandise 13 "Hibiscus" by Ruby Allen
The contrast between the cool background and textural flower comes into harmony through touches of background color in the flower petals.
Merchandise 14 "Best Friends Forever" by Lorene Williams
This enjoyable scene of old friends is enhanced by the use of sepia-like tones evocative of times gone by.