Saturday, May 20, 2006

Reston Report

Back from jurying the 15th Annual Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival in Reston, which expects to gather anywhere from 60,000 to 80,000 art lovers this weekend to check out 150 artists and artisans from around the nation.

The jurying was brutal work, as there were many talented artists, and it also seems like sales were going gangbusters (Marvin Blackmore sold a $25,000 piece while we were jurying around!).

Also ran into Bailey, who was a volunteer at the show and was delivering lunches and water and sodas to the artists.

And Kirkland also benefited from the first day of the show, as one of his pieces sold at the GRACE gallery. His solo looks really good and clean (more on that later).

Anyway, we awarded the best in show to Chris Plummer, a really young printmaker from Kentucky with some deeply interesting woodcuts.

I also liked the work of Michigan artist Helen Gotlib, but couldn't swing a prize for her (she won a prize last year).

Also of interest were the amazing retablos of Nicario Jimenez, last seen locally at an exhibition last year in the Corcoran.

Other prizewinners included woodturner Kim Blatt, sculptor Valerie Bunnell, watercolorist Randy Eckart, an amazing young minimalist jeweler by the name of Geoffry Giles, who won the First Prize in the Crafts category, and the always intelligent photographs of Vincent Serbin.

And I also fell in love with the furniture of Damian Velazquez: this guy is amazing and affordable!

Update: Bailey's report here.

Saturday Assignments

If you're in an artsy mood and want to hang around Bethesda, you can start your day by attending the artists' talk at Fraser Gallery at 2PM and then walking over to the opening of the new exhibition at Heineman Myers Contemporary Art.

First: Many of the artists from the current Compelled by Content II exhibition will deliver an artists' talk, sponsored by the James Renwick Alliance at the Fraser Gallery on Saturday, May 20, 2006 at 2PM.

The talk is free and open to the public and will also offer an opportunity to learn more about the Renwick Alliance. There will be plenty of sangria at hand.

Then Heineman-Myers Contemporary Art opens its second show ever with an exhibition of new works by acclaimed Argentine painter Martha Zuik. The opening for Zuik is from 6-9PM.

Restonin' Today

I'll be in Reston all day, one of three jurors selecting the prizewinners for the 15th Annual Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival in Reston, Virginia. About 150 artists from all over the country, a few thousand dollars in prizes, tons of bucks in sales, and between 60,000 - 80,000 people attend, look at and buy art at the festival, which runs Saturday and Sunday. Details here.