December 12, 2008 – January 19, 2009 Nicholas Colasanto Center; Alexandria, Virginia Map and Gallery Info
Megan Coyle’s collages, “Figure Seated by the Counter,” “Pink Flower,” and “Orange Lily” were on display in the Del Ray Artisan’s Nicholas Colasanto Center. The exhibition featured the artwork of members from the Del Ray Artisans and the Guild of American Papercutters.
The gallery was filled with detailed artwork – including traditional black and white papercuttings as well as mixed media collages. The exhibition not only had two-dimensional work, but three dimensional sculptural pieces.
Megan Coyle’s “The Curious Kitten” was on display in the Art League’s “Small Works” exhibition. During this monthly exhibition, two shows were going on – a large works and a small works one. Megan’s collage was awarded an Honorable Mention by the exhibitions juror, Susan Frank.
538 works of art were submitted to the exhibition, and only 198 were accepted.
The Art League provided a Juror’s Statement hand-out during the exhibition, that explained why the juror selected the pieces that were in the exhibition:
“In a small format, the composition becomes the dominant element.”
Over 500 works of art were submitted to the 2008 “small works” show at The Art League Gallery, giving juror Dr. Susan Frank, Assistant Curator at the Phillips Collection, a challenging task. She was quite pleased by the diversity and quality of the submissions. “I wanted to select a show that represented and reflected what was submitted – in terms of style, medium, and subject matter. It was very difficult to select the pieces for this show, narrow the works down, and select the award winners.”
“In a small format, the composition becomes the dominant element.” In addition to looking for an awareness of composition, Frank wanted to see an inventive use of palette, whether in color or black and white, and a strong command of materials.
“I was looking for something a little different – a fresh take on a traditional subject such as still life, figure, landscape. I have a particular fondness for still life. I am interested to see how an artist can take a traditional subject like still life and make it new and interesting.”
The pieces Frank selected as award winners are reflective of the works seen throughout the show. Frank awarded “Orange Peeled,” by Jill Banks best in show. “This is a fresh take on still life, a different perspective.” Ann Thomson’s photograph, “Arlington Brush,” was awarded an Honorable Mention for it’s wonderful composition and intriguing texture. Frank recognized “Serene Beauty” by Peter Reynolds for it’s strong composition and dramatic value contrast. Patti Vincent’s, “Fisherman” impressed her. “There is a great sense of space in this tiny piece. It is so hard to work with greens but this artist has succeeded,” Frank stated. Frank was also impressed with “Renee,” by Maria Valle-Riestra, for the beautiful handling of the ink, brushwork, and sense of freshness.
“I encourage artists to continue to educate themselves. It’s important to visit galleries and museums, and study and examine the work of other artists to train your mind and your eye.”
Dr. Frank is Assistant Curator at The Phillips Collection. She is a specialist in late nineteenth and early twentieth-century art and received her Ph.D from the University of Iowa. She has curated many exhibits including, “American Impressionism: Paintings from The Phillips Collection on tour through summer 2009 across the U.S.,” and “East Meets West: Hiroshige at The Phillips Collection.” She is also known for a number of important books including, American Impressionists: Painters of Light and the Modern Landscape.
Due to a request, I’ve decided to work on a few Obama portraits. This one is the first that’s been completed in the series–and it’s a mini portrait. I think I’ll make the other ones around the same size.
I’m taking a night class in graphic design and for our next class, our assignment is to create four images that reflect the four seasons based on color scheme and/or subject matter. I decided to do coffee and tea for my series. We have to use color packets of coated paper for the project, so I’m in my comfort zone since the project involves collaging, however, I’m not accustomed to using plain paper. This piece is the first one I completed in the series–the cool colors and the steam represent the coldness of winter.