Student Competitive 2021
Melissa Wilkinson, Juror
Brad Cushman Gallery | March 29 – April 12, 2021
Please join our Zoom Reception on April 9, 2021 starting at 5 PM.
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An incredibly rewarding, and also challenging honor is being asked to juror a student exhibition. Within a very short amount of time, one is asked to make decisions about the quality, merit and impact of an artwork. One may ask themselves many questions while considering a student exhibition in particular. Is this work interesting? Is it impactful visually? Does the form support the content? Is there engagement with art history as well as positioning itself in the scheme of contemporary art? Is the work well crafted and visually intelligent? Is the artist speaking clearly to the viewer?
Each juror will choose different questions to ask based on their experience and I acknowledge that each juror will have in a way, bias. This bias could include their own experiences with students or even lean towards their own tastes. While jurying this exhibition, I sought out work that expressed a mood and maintained a certain mastery of the media chosen. I looked for artwork that built on or renewed a concept from art history-a refreshing reboot if you will.
Creativity is paramount, but what does that exactly look like? A student developing a voice that is both consistent and has a commitment to experimentation says they are making strides in their educational endeavors. Reinventing the wheel or using overused tropes speaks of insecurity, derivation, and lack of research. When a young artist breaks from convention, yet upholds standards of tradition, I tend to be most delighted as a viewer. In these particular cases, ambition, technical mastery, and conviction were the determining factors in the works I chose for this exhibition.
I want to congratulate the artists whose work was admitted to the show. I want to also encourage the artists who were not accepted to continue to pursue their ideas and work. Think of this rejection as character building and guided motivation. The jury process is not always kind. It’s not a formula, but it is a time-honored method for artists to receive feedback and measure their progress. I’d like to thank Brad Cushman for his hospitality and invitation to review and juror this exhibition. It was a delightful experience.
UA LITTLE ROCK STUDENT COMPETITIVE 2021 WINNERS
FRAME SHOPS CERTIFICATES
CANTRELL GALLERY – Helen Scott, Cindy and Clarke Huisman, Owners
Winner: Carley Brown
HEARNE FINE ART – Garbo Hearne, Owner
Winner: Daleesha Hood
ART SUPPLIES AND MATERIALS
ART OUTFITTERS – Kerry Kemp, Owner
Winners: Concera Davis
STARVING ARTIST AWARDS
TRIO’S – Capi Peck, Brent Peterson, Stephanie Toon Caruthers, Owners
Winner: Sarah Lassiter
BLVD. BREAD COMPANY – Christina McGehee, Owner
Winners: Jessica Fuller
The ROOT CAFÉ and MOCKINGBIRD – Corri Bristow-Sundell & Jack Sundell, Owners
The ROOT CAFÉ – Taylor McKinney
MOCKINGBIRD – Annika Wade
Friends of the Arts – Purchase Award – $500
Reece Henderson, “Brothers,” ceramic
UA Little Rock Gallery Acquisition Purchase
Hannah May, “Perception,” soda-fired porcelain
WILMA AND JACK DINER AWARDS
Wilma and Jack Diner Scholarship
$750 – Rebekah Wilson
$750 – Bailey Holley
Wilma and Jack Diner Purchase $500
Yelena Petroukhina, “Untitled #3,” ceramics
Wilma and Jack Diner Cash Award
$500 — Andrew Chun
$500 — Rachel Stuckey