Everyone who entered artwork in this year's Impressions Exhibition has work accepted. A very few individuals who entered two works may only have one displayed, but that's only because we didn't have room in the gallery. It's crowded, but I have never liked sending an artist home with all their work while everyone else is in here enjoying the show and chatting with their fellow artists. Remember, the reception is 5-7pm this year.
Dates for submission of works: Wednesday, November 8 - Tuesday, November 14
Reception: 5-7pm, Friday, November 17
Exhibition runs November 17 - December 16
We once again close out our year with Impressions 2017, our annual juried exhibition that is open to visual artists working or living in Kentucky and the contiguous states. Work must be original and must have been completed during the past three years. Membership in the Art Guild is not required to submit works in the exhibition. A $200 cash award will be given for the artwork selected as “Best of Show.” Cash awards of $100 for first place and $50 for second place will be given in each of the five categories: Painting, Photography, Drawing, Mixed Media including fiber arts, and Sculpture.
Honorable mention awards may be given at the discretion of the juror. A non-refundable fee of $20.00 for up to two works is due at the time of submission. Payment may be made by cash, check or credit card. An entry tag must be filled out and secured to the back of each entry. Entry tags are available at the gallery or online at icehousearts.org. Artists must indicate the category in which each work is to compete. This is a competitive show and not all work submitted will be displayed. Approximately half of the entries to the show will be selected to be displayed. Works that are not included in the exhibit can be picked up on the night of the opening reception. We will post a list online of all works chosen for display shortly after works are juried but winners will not be announced until reception night. All two-dimensional work must be substantially framed, with wire attached for hanging. Three-dimensional work must be freestanding, supplied with its own stand, or be capable of being displayed on the gallery’s pedestals. Consult the gallery prior to submitting works that cannot be displayed in the customary manner or if the artwork you intend to submit is unusually large or heavy; space limitations may prohibit the display of very large works.
Juror for this year’s exhibition will be Jennifer Fairbanks from Murray. Jennifer is a working artist, art teacher and gallerist. She holds an M.A. from New York University in Art Therapy and is a member of the Art Students League and the National Academy of Design, both in NYC. She has long been associated with our Art Guild and we are pleased that she has agreed to help with our show. All works from the Exhibition must be picked up by Saturday, December 30. The gallery will be closed during January and there can’t be any works remaining in the building. Ian and Barbie Bastida will be playing holiday selections as a violin/cello duet at the reception this year. Also during the reception, we will be drawing the winning entry for the annual quilt raffle. There is still plenty of time to purchase tickets for Fran McEachern’s handmade quilt that will remain on display in the gallery until the reception.
Ben Walker, "The Grinder" (2017, pen & pencil), $500.
Let's talk about Art...
There has been a debate raging over the past fifty-plus years over the validity of realism in a contemporary art world. It was thought that the advent of photography eliminated the need to document the real world with oil on canvas. What followed was decades of abstract, expressionist and conceptual painting, and realist art was considered anachronistic.
Robert Motherwell, "Elegy to the Spanish Republic #132" 1975–85
Personally, I prefer realism. But not “picture postcard” realism. I prefer it with a creative twist. I don’t understand Motherwell and I don’t understand how his paintings represent the real or imagined world. My field at grad school was XIX-Century French painting. My favorite artist from the period is Manet. His Gare Saint-Lazare uses abstract elements (the flat steel bars over clouds of steam) along with human figures to express the desperation often felt as Paris was becoming modernized. This expressionism goes well beyond photography.
Richard Estes, "Central Savings," 1975
Edouard Manet, "Gare Saint Lazare," 1873
Richard Estes, "Six Views of Edo," 1989
My favorite American Modernist artist is Richard Estes. His style of super-realism is creative and imaginative, and his art combines elements of cubism, abstractionism and modernism. There is an inherent beauty in the ability to paint in a photo-realist technique but often that’s not enough to produce meaningful art. Content, both in realism and in abstract art, is every bit as important as technique.
Which brings us to the works of Ben Walker. Ben is quickly becoming a master at pen & ink (and pen & pencil) graphic work. His drawings have the old-world look of a Durer, but with the imagination of a Bosch. They are realistic images in the same way as Estes’s paintings are and possess that same quality of technical beauty. But his imaginative characters transcend the drawings into a completely different category of realism. They are to drawing what Jennifer Fairbank's works are to oil painting. Completely original, you won’t see anything like his works coming out of another artist’s studio. This is a person you will be hearing much more about in future years.
We will be showing Ben's works through November 10 in place of the UT-Martin faculty show. Ben has shared some of his paintings and drawings with us in the Community and Impressions shows last year. One of his fanciful pen and ink works sold within minutes of the Impressions opening reception and two of the works from this show have already sold. These are seriously good and we're pleased that Ben is allowing us to display both his new works and some from the previous shows.
Continues Through October
Mel Garbark Estate Art Sale
Remaining Works Priced at 50% Off Original Price
Click on the image for more information on artwork in the sale.
When Mel Garbark passed away last year there were 90 completed works of art remaining in his studio. Thanks to his daughter Gale Dillon, the representative for his estate, these will be offered through the Icehouse in a special exhibit from May 5 through June 3. It will be an honor for us to stage this event since Mel was such a good friend to the Guild and to many artists throughout the region. We will have the opportunity to pay tribute to this internationally-recognized wildlife artist at a reception to open the exhibit that will be held from 6 until 8pm on Friday, May 5. A page will be set up on our website at icehousearts.org to display the most significant of these works.
Click on the image above to see more of Mel's works for sale...
Now accepting all major credit cards through PayPal for Gallery and Gift Shop purchases.
The Mayfield/Graves County Art Guild and our Icehouse Gallery are supported primarily by contributions from our membership and the corporate community. Nine percent of our operating budget comes from the City of Mayfield, Graves County Fiscal Court and the Kentucky Arts Council, the state arts agency, which receives state tax dollars and federal funding from the National Endowment for the Arts.