- Tropical Canopy watercolor & ink painting by Rae Rose & Rita Rose of Spotsylvania, VA
- S. with Wings mixed media by Julia Travers of Charlottesville, VA
- Garden Wall No.2 oil painting by Elizabeth Shumate of Hampton, VA
- Evening Sojourn mixed media by Bev Bley of Fredericksburg, VA
- Mid Summer Evening oil painting by Marcia Chaves of Falmouth, VA
- The Shadow People ink on clay board by Phyllis Graudszus of Unionville, VA
- Southwest Landscape pastel painting by Diane Russell, of Stafford, VA
- Just Park [Yo Truck] On Our Feet mixed media on canvas painting by Katy Shepard of Stafford, VA
- Yellow Roses oil painting by Beverly Toves of Fredericksburg, VA
- Spring House soft pastel by Kathleen Willingham of Bealeton, VA
As a human being what is it that attracts you to another? Why do you gravitate to a building, an article of clothing, an object of any form , even a place in this world or your own visual memory?
Is it the harmony of the whole encounter or maybe in some cases the disharmony? Wherein said case you find a pleasing order amidst the chaos and marvel at what now exists. When a building or structure is razed how is it when everything settles to Mother Earth or the bottom of an ocean you may discover what remains is more attractive than the object in its original state?
The great Picasso once said -- "Every act of creation first involves the act of destruction."
I ponder deeply those words whether I am creating a fine meal or starting a new work of art. Also I do consider -- Am I repeating myself? Am I obviously too close to another's work , style, or an "ism" of art history? Am I truly being original?
How does an artist give themselves permission to proceed? Certainly not just through unbridled passion nor so deep an intellectual approach the completed work only exists in only the artist's mind. As we are each individual and are uniquely different through simple logic what each of us does is original and unique. The next question though becomes to what degree?
In some ways as artists when we present our work for external review in a competition we are asking that question. "To what degree are you (the juror) attracted to my work?" For this process at the FCCA I was requested to make that decision.
My first responsibility is to be informed and continue that process on a daily basis. It started in 1969 when I was first accepted in a juried competition at the Virginia Museum of Fine Art. I have never stopped that inquiry since then. Quite simply it is my life.
When looking at works for review the first response I have is emotive. Next, have I seen this before? If so what has the artist created to either break or maintain traditions of the past? If I continue to look at a work - what am I learning or seeing? Where is the beauty of mystery and inventiveness? Also how is it presented to make it a "whole work of art"? Is it a work without distractions of framing or an over done signature-at times larger than some elements in the work itself? Will it stand the test of time?
I balance the worlds of subjectivity and objectivity when making decisions as to what is accepted when jurying a competition. I have to. I do the same with my own work. Because once I release my work into the world it is no longer mine.
If your works were not accepted at this juncture of your life no matter the number of your years please do not dismay. Believe in what you do and press on. Consider also with that spirit making a few course corrections or taking new risks that may seem foreign or fearful. Be willing to fail. Step out of your comfort zone and unbuckle the safety belt that may be restraining you. From what I understand we only live once.
Visual Artist - October 3rd, 2014
I sincerely extend a special thank you to Carrol Morgan, Bob Worthy, and Patricia Smith for all of their assistance in assembling this show for the gallery space and Carolyn Beever / Maura Harrison for giving the exhibit an Internet presence. DRW