by Paula Fowler, Gallery Co-Director
We opened the WAS-H November/December virtual show on Sunday, November 15, just as we were able to take our first breaths of cool Canadian air as it pushed the heat and humidity out of Houston. On that beautiful afternoon, we were treated to 45 wonderful small treasures to grace our virtual gallery walls. Our tradition this time of year is to present small paintings (this year less than 14” on a side) with the idea of offering great items for gift giving. With that in mind, the theme for this show is Small Treasures.
Joining us this month at our Zoom reception to introduce the winning paintings was our extremely talented and articulate judge, Cheryl Evans. Cheryl is a producing artist and a Signature Member of WAS-H. She graduated from Stephen F. Austin State University with a BFA in Painting and earned a Master of Arts degree from the University of Houston Clear Lake. She has taught for 34 years at the high school and College level. She taught at University of Houston Clear Lake and Lee College and has retired as a career art educator from public school and was named Texas Art Educator of the Year in 2012. Currently, she is sharing her love of art as watercolor painting instructor at Alvin Community College where she has taught for 5 years. She has had several one-woman shows, and her work is found in private and corporate collections around the country, and in Japan, England, Mexico, and Norway. She is a Distinguished Fellow of the Texas Art Education Association. Her work ranges from landscape, to portraiture, to abstract.
I’m so pleased to be able to share Cheryl’s own words about each of our winners:
1st Place - Alison Hendry - Do You Think He Is Relaxed
“There is a wonderful use of texture and contrast as well as rich and subtle neutral grays. The grays are infused with effervescent bits of color. It fills the space so well. You can almost hear this painting purr.”
2nd Place - Lynda Jung - The Rose
“Delightful range of values applied in a loose and transparent manner and balanced so well with the use of the contour line. The composition is formally balanced with a good use of positive and negative space. “
3rd Place - Kim Granhaug - Sailor’s Delight
“Strong, fearless and dramatic use of color makes this piece a standout. The application has a buttery quality and really shows the hand of the artist. The turquoise color skips across the composition moving the eye and unifying the piece.”
Honorable Mention-Gay Paratore - Dodge Royal (blue car)
“This is an example of how an artist can use realism to arrange colors and shapes into an abstract composition. The composition works regardless of its orientation. It has a strong dominant focal point and killer leading lines.”
Honorable Mention - Hiep Nguyen -Twilight Impression
“This is a gem of a painting. The freshness of the loose and juicy wet on wet washes in the sky and the watery world below leaves use to speculate and construct our own middle earth as the artists suggest the shoreline, boats and piers with an efficient use of line. This painting is engaging and intriguing.”
Honorable Mention - Susan Tadlock Bond - Finally Asleep
“The facial expressions draw the viewer into the visual story. The skin tones are varied and not overworked. One of the key elements is the break up of space between that expertly applied gradual wash in the background and the two figures in the foreground. This is a very personal painting and it makes me want to know more about the child and the father.”
Please take a minute to see what our winners have to say about their painting in a separate blog posting, Winner’s Words.
We also owe a big thanks to our crew of virtual-gallery volunteers who, with tenacity and good humor, continued to push the limits of their technical skills in order to make this show possible. They are learning and feeling so good that they can keep WAS-H’s life-blood flowing until we are back in our building and are able to enjoy the camaraderie we all miss so much. Many thanks go to Sally Hoyt, Cissy Geigerman, Karen Stopnicki, Nancy McMillan, Martin Butler, Kathleen Church and, of course, our president, Beth Graham.
The take-in for our next show starts on January 2, 2021. The prospectus is available on the website. Please show your support for WAS-H and share your latest work!