Congratulations to all of the artists who participated in this year’s annual Member Show! We had 8 artists recognized with a special award: 1st,2nd,3rd places and 5 Honorable Mentions. Below are our juror’s comments!
Juror’s Statement – WCAL Member Show 2020, Waukeha Civic Theatre
It was truly a pleasure to view and interact with all the wonderful works in this show. I was pleased to find such a consistently high caliber of artistic expression throughout the exhibit. The quality and consistency therein made parsing the works for awards that much more challenging. During the selection process, I fought to find balance between my own subjectivity as an artist and something like an objective criterion. As an instructor, one of the attributes I try to promote on a daily basis is a detailed understanding of the subject’s volume/form and how those forms fit into a larger compositional space. In my own work as an artist, I’m particularly interested in color dynamics, pattern making, and fluid movement through space, left to right, top to bottom, and front to back.
A few brief notes regarding the award-winning works:
1st Place – Marble Pond Reflections, Renee Couture
As I mentioned above, I’m a big fan of color and pattern making and both of those of those qualities are wonderfully utilized in this democratically distributed composition. This wonderful little pastel expresses a clear understanding of the subject matter and is thoughtfully formatted to activate a wonderful relation between the larger, more open, reflective space below and the densely packed flora above. There is an obvious mastery of the pastel media by the artist, crafting a wonderfully controlled surface fabric of creamy powdered pigment.
2nd Place – Snowy Day Hawks, Jan Wood
What impressed me most here was the poetic sense of light. I was transported to a cold winter snow in the woods and subtly warmed by the low-lying sun. Again, a clear understanding of the subject’s form is wonderfully expressed, detailing the turn of light around the cylindrical volume of the birds perched body, covered by soft feathers, dappled by snow fall. Lovely. Impressive.
3rd Place – Rural Crossing, R.E. Gurgl
What can I say, classic Midwest Americana, merging the rural with the industrial, train tracks tying the bucolic farming community to a distant urban center. I find something captivating and satisfying compositionally about the scale and location of the red eyes and drowsy lids of the track gate and how it forces our languid view leftward. From there our gaze is lead through perspective back in space and up to the horizon where we wander along the trees, into the barn and silo, wafting with the clouds back toward our comical sentinel, where the adventure begins again.
I would like to sincerely thank Renee Couture and the Waukesha Creative Arts League for inviting me to participate as the juror for their 2020 Member’s Exhibit. It was truly a wonderful exhibit and a touching experience. I applaud all the exhibiting artists and their wonderful works.
Michael K. Julian, MFA
Associate Professor of Art & Design, UWM, College of General Studies, Waukesha Campus