Art Speaks Juried Exhibition Awards

8th Annual Art Speaks Juried Exhibition Awards

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Best in Show: "Foggy Morning" by Michele Fletcher | Fine art photography

From the Judge:

The complicated simplicity in Foggy Morning is striking. What seems minimal at first glance becomes quite complex over a longer view. The photo’s exaggerated atmospheric perspective, combined with its opposing flat graphic qualities, contributes to its overall demand for attention. Reminiscent of the late 16th c. Japanese screens by Hasegawa ­Tohaku, Foggy Morning, excels at pacing the viewer with the visual rhythms and varied repetition defined nearly a century ago by the gestalt principles of design. 



This year's Best in Show Award is in honor of Patty and Eric Rosenberg, longtime supporters of the Bay School and the arts. The award is sponsored by Friends of Patty and Eric:Julie Dayton, David and Mary Ann Carr, David and Linda Moorman, Dick and Adele Pogue, Lewis and MaryAnn Hubbard, Kathy Yent-White and Lloyd White, Dan and Kelsey Desmond, Mary Chapman, Mac and Gay Butler, and Alan and Lois Biddison.

We asked Patty to share why she and Eric are so passionate about the arts:

"Our commitment to the arts is deeply rooted in our social consciousness. We have tried to be supportive of the arts in general and the Bay School in particular. Early in the Bay School’s history I helped Wendy Wells when she called on us to contribute in many ways- giving of our time, talents and sweat equity, being on the board for ten years, doing invitations and decorations for the auction and chairing the auction and now helping with the Arts Speaks Show.

I was an Art History major at Mary Washington and one professor pointed out in our senior year that we needed to continue our interest and support of the arts after graduation and throughout our lives. I took this admonition to heart since I truly believe art is essential to spiritual well being. Being creative is an expression of who we are and how we interact with the world.

Our families were supportive of the arts. My family is full of people who draw and paint, especially my father, his sister and many cousins. We admire those who are artists and support artists."

Thank you, Patty and Eric, for all you've done and continue to do to support the arts! You will never be forgotten.




1st Place, 2-D: "Landscape 10" by Charlotte McAdams | Acrylic

From the Judge:

Contrasts abound in this lyrical image! The visual moves between orange and blue, vivid and dull, dark and light, soft and hard edges, etc.… create a surface tension that moves this non-illusionary painting into a piece about deep space and advancing foreground. Over a longer view this work delivers even more complex shapes, colors, and edges that vibrate and sing. Landscape 10 shares an unavoidable kinship to the painted works of artists Paul Klee and Hans Hoffman, wherein these concerns held so much prominence.

The award for 1st Place, 2-Dimensional Art is sponsored by Patty and Eric Rosenberg.

The award is named for Dorothy Gould Abare, Patty’s aunt. Dotti was a self-taught artist and animal lover. She loved old farmhouses and painting them. Many of her works in later years were of birds. She is remembered fondly for her encouragement of young artists.

This year the award honors Linda Walker, a founding member of the Art Speaks Juried Art Show Committee. Linda’s leadership was instrumental in the show’s success for the first six years, and her legacy lives on in today’s exhibition. Linda is a scrimshaw artist, an animal lover, and has been a tireless cheerleader and organizer for all things Art Speaks. Linda and her husband Robert generously sponsored awards for many years of the exhibition. She is now enjoying retirement in the local area.



1st Place, 3-D: "Gold Boat" by Elizabeth Krome | Stoneware

From the Judge:

The clean lines of Krome's Gold Boat emphasize this vessel's essential form. Every part of this vessel is well-considered, from the base's interaction to the table to the proportion of the cavity and handles. The repeating yet varying spherical arches are incredibly satisfying, creating a strong sense of unity and rhythm, further strengthening the piece's overall aesthetic. The brilliant design and superb craftsmanship of Gold Boat result in a vessel that surpasses merely function and stands firmly as a beautiful work of art.

The award for 1st Place, 3-Dimensional Art is sponsored by Josephine Thorpe. Josie is a champion of the Mathews community, with a special focus on the arts and local history.

The award is named for Chris McCann, who crafted many of the whimsical  works in Josie’s sculpture garden.  Chris had a big heart, a creative mind, and skilled hands, and a positive impact on many lives in Mathews.

This year the award is in memory of Wade Brooks, a founding member of the Art Speaks Juried Art Show Committee. Wade was a blacksmith and glassblower whose studio was on the Made in Mathews Open Studio Tour for many years. His thoughtful insights were invaluable to the development of the Art Speaks Exhibition, and he is greatly missed.



2nd Place, 2-D: "Oaxaca Meat Hall" by Maggie Gilman | Digital Photograph

From the Judge:

Gilman's Oaxaca Meat Hall is a moving image that begs one to connect with the woman at its center. This is a work that reveals itself with time, demanding a long and curious look into both content and composition. The dynamic symmetry and perspective in this piece form the scaffolding for beautiful complexity, drawing even more attention to the woman's placement near its center. All diagonals lead to her. Her lit, nearly glowing body, pushes the psychology and narrative of this piece, demanding the viewer to engage.

The 2nd Place, 2-Dimensional Art Award is sponsored by Jim and Amanda Taylor, longtime supporters of the Bay School. They honor Martha Anne King with the award:

“Jim and I have dedicated this award to Martha Ann King. Martha Ann exemplifies the spirit of the Bay School. She is an artist, a dedicated volunteer, a mentor and inspiration to many! Her infectious smile and enthusiasm is a treasure for all.”

We couldn’t agree more. Martha Anne has taken dozens of classes at the Bay School and exhibited many works in the gallery, including a piece in this exhibition. We are saddened to announce that Martha Anne has recently passed from this world. 


2nd Place, 3-D: "Urn" by Katherine Maloney | Stoneware

From the Judge:

Through color, texture, and pattern Maloney's Urn merges disparate elements into a beautifully composed pot. The base, consisting of ram heads, is an unexpected yet exciting detail. While that type of detail could easily overpower a vessel, Maloney cleverly uses other areas of heavy visual weight to create well-balanced and quirky pot. In addition to impeccable craftsmanship, this urn showcases a thoughtful, well-balanced design that would delight any discerning eye.

 The 2nd Place, 3-Dimensional Art Award is sponsored by Lester and Donna Van Winkle, and honors Jeanne Spain. Lester served as the judge for the 2018 Art Speaks Juried Exhibition, and recently judged the Art Speaks Gallery’s “Best in Show” category of the “All Creatures” exhibition.


3rd Place, 2-D: "Time for Tea" by Coakley Brown | Oil

From the Judge:

Brown's Time for Tea is a well-investigated painting, evidencing the artist's interest in light, space, and underlying formal abstraction. The painting moves beyond mere description with actively painted negative shapes and oodles of overlap that lock in the underlying compositional scaffolding. An intricate lattice of the varying pattern also functions to unify this work further. The work's spatial illusion, lost and found forms, and varied edges work to expand the space, implying a sort of "thick air" that deepens the space beyond its shallow confines. 

The Award for 3rd Place, 2-Dimensional Art is sponsored by Pam and Jeff Doss, in memory of Ellen Garfield. Ellen loved the arts and was a great supporter of the Bay School, including sponsoring Art Speaks Juried Exhibition awards for six years. Her vibrant personality and generous spirit are missed. 


3rd Place, 3-D: "Sex Dragon" by Sam Forrest | Oak with linseed

From the Judge:

Forrest’s Sex Dragon is a beautifully designed piece that maintains functionality without sacrificing artistic aesthetic. The proportion and scale of the varying curves and arches create unifying rhythms and beautifully crafted movements. Its superb craftsmanship and masterful design create a powerhouse sculpture!

 The Award for 3rd Place, 3-Dimensional Art is sponsored by Mary Callis Pope, in memory of Claire Jones.

Claire was a talented artist, interior decorator and mentor. A native of New York City, Claire had been president of her own design company, involved in interior decorating and product design, before moving to Mathews in 1961. Painting in oil began as a self-taught interest followed by courses at the Museum of Modern Art and studies in architecture and design at Columbia University. After moving to Mathews, Claire was involved in many county activities. She was instrumental in starting a children’s art show in Mathews.


Founder's Award: "Flamingo Party" by Kathleen Noffsinger | Oil and cold wax on cradled board

The Founders’ Award is sponsored and selected by Wendy Wells-Finn, Bay School Founder, and her husband Patrick Finn. This year the award honors Kim Moore, the Bay School’s first hired Executive Director.

From Wendy:  “Kim helped make it possible for me to step down and back from the Bay School gracefully. I knew that for the Bay School to thrive it had to belong to the community. It couldn't do that if I was still there. A couple of years after I left I read about "Founder's Syndrome". I'd made the right decision but it was hard. Kim worked hard, was easy to like and to trust, and she had a great sense of humor - she'll probably tell you that she was a saint to put up with me!!”

Arts on Main Award: "Symbiosis" by Katherine Maloney | Stoneware

From Betsy Henderson, award judge:

This was a very difficult decision given the stellar quality of the work chosen. The ceramics were especially strong. Katherine Maloney’s piece Sybiosis demonstrates not only technical mastery of her medium but a lovely rendering of the animals portrayed. The elegant, fluid interaction of the horses is particularly moving.


The Arts on Main Award recognizes our close relationship with our neighboring arts center, Gloucester Arts on Main.

The Award is sponsored by immediate past Chairman Bill Andersen and his wife Roxanna. The winning piece was selected by Betsy Henderson, Arts on Main’s Executive Director.


Richmond Clayworks Award: "Laughing Gull" by Shirley Gromen | Porcelain

This is the first year for the Richmond Clayworks Award for Ceramic Excellence. Scott Campbell and his team at Clayworks of Richmond serve the Bay School’s pottery studio’s needs. The staff selected the winning piece together.

Students' Choice, 2-D: "Blue Dock II" by Bob Carlson | Acrylic

The Students’ Choice Awards are selected by advanced art students at Mathews High School, under the director of art teacher Rachel Morris.

Students’ Choice 2-Dimensional Art is sponsored by Mac and Gay Butler, in honor of their children.

Students' Choice, 3-D: "Kelp Dance" by Russell Turnage | Porcelain

Students’ Choice 3-Dimensional Art is sponsored by Janine and David Burns in partnership with past and present local area art teachers, Kathleen Reming, Ellen Walter, Cindee Progar, and Leslie Belvin. Janine believes "...the Bay School and the arts are vital to the Mathews community."

Awards of Merit:

"Edna Earl" by Karen Kingsley | Acrylic

Reminiscent of portraits by well-known artist Alice Neel, Kingsley's portrait of Edna Earl presents an isolated figure with an unapologetic stare and a vacuous space.


The sitter's psychology and personal narrative dominate this work. The empty space surrounding the subject forces our eye to the sitter's confrontational gaze, perched regally in all her fineries. She appears to reign over her omitted space, piquing our curiosity with things unseen.


Sponsored by Beth Smith 

"A Friend" by Linda Marshall | Oil on board

Upon first glance, Marshall's A Friend presents a pleasant, sentimental image; wherein content seemingly trumps form. However, upon closer inspection, this painting's minimal and carefully designed composition advances the work beyond mere sentimentality. In a direct nod toward dynamic symmetry, the dog and shadow's diagonal placement halve the composition. The dog's nose, strategically placed along the horizontal mid-point, serves to further the design's efficiency.

 In addition to the composition's strong geometry, its graphic forms, highlight the underlying abstraction. At the same time, the evident perspective alludes to space and volume, creating an exciting tension between illusion and design.

Sponsored by Rita Cutler

"Unbound" by Barbara Hennig-Loomis | Graphite and colored pencil

Hennig-Loomis' drawing Unbound is a delicate work that excels in its illustrative qualities but also remains open to interpretation and discovery. Carefully observed, this work shows Hennig-Loomis' understanding of a larger form's relationship to its surface detail. So, despite the thorough exploration of the tree's texture, the tree's larger structure is well-formed.

 Unbound excels in its design. The positioning of the tree and its relationship to the edge of the page strengthen the composition. The design encourages edge tensions that direct the eye. The tree placement also serves to transform the white of the paper into more than an empty space. The white shapes become active, nearly as exciting as the tree itself.

Sponsored by Page Cutler

"Slow Swim" by Russell Turnage | Porcelain

Turnage’s design sense in Slow Swim is nothing short of brilliant. The vessel’s surface design expertly considers the 3D form, relating the fish's undulations to the swelling curves of the vase itself. The resolution of the opening cleverly mimics the fins of the fish without being overly overt. No part of this piece seems unconsidered. It is unified throughout, but also provides variation and surprise. It is a superb piece to be sure. 

Sponsored by Ruth and Tim Morgan

 "Peaceful Valley" by Johnny Hayes | Acrylic

Like a Matisse cut-out or Arthur Dove landscape, Hayes' Peaceful Valley delivers a compelling design with bold, colorful forms. This work depicts a playful image devoid of frivolous whimsy, wherein subtle tensions and lyrical movements work in tandem to create a lovely painting.

 Peaceful Valley's subtle ambiguity between positive and negative shapes creates a tension that simultaneously flattens form and defines space. Cleverly, Hayes uses interactions with the painting's edge to establish calm and dynamic rhythmic movements that extend well into the painting's interior. Furthermore, the efficient repetition of color in Hayes' limited palette, creates effective groupings and subgroupings, strengthening the overall unity of the composition.

Sponsored by Ruthie and Gordon Penick


 Juror and Judge, 2020 Art Speaks Juried Exhibition   

head shot photograph of Nicole M. Santiago

Nicole M. Santiago

Juror Statement

 One of my most challenging jobs as a professional artist is judging the merit of another artist's work. I take my role as a juror seriously and do my best to provide fair and unbiased responses to each artist's work.

 As you may know, judging the merit of an artwork can be a somewhat subjective endeavor; however, a well-seasoned juror can bring objectivity to the process through experience and practice. One develops the ability to recognize artistic merit through years of experience. I come to this exhibition as a seasoned art professional, who has cultivated a critical eye over decades of deep and ongoing efforts in curating, artmaking, and exhibiting. I've further developed my aesthetic keenness by teaching thousands of students how to paint and draw. These experiences form the basis of my artistic sensibilities, which help me bring objectivity into the judging process.

 To provide further insight into my assessment process, I often use some combination of the following simple aesthetic criteria when looking at works:

  • Composition / understanding of pictorial design & compositional harmony
  • Artistic Maturity / transcendence beyond technique & avoidance of clichés
  • Intellectual heft / balance of form and content
  • Creativity / inventiveness and original thought
  • Materials / sensitivity to material handling
  • Artistic Ambition / risk-taking

 It is important to understand that juried competitions can serve as a valuable component of artistic development; this is true even when one receives a rejection. As someone who has been in over 100 exhibitions, and applied to three times that many, I have received my fair number of rejections. I've learned over the years that a thick-skin is important, but perseverance is essential to a successful career in the arts.