I Am Woman 2024 Winners Announced

Winners were announced Saturday May 11, at the reception for the I Am Woman art exhibit and competition at Southern Arts Society (SASi) in Kings Mountain. I Am Woman is an exhibit for artwork that represents the feminine or female experience. This is a judged show with first, second and third place prizes along with four merit awards. Artists from around the region have created works in oil, acrylic, watercolor, photography, sculpture, textiles, paper, and mixed media to interpret their view of I Am Woman.
Judging this year’s show was Susan Carlisle Bell, former Professor of Art at Gardner Webb University.  Ms. Bell made initial comments about judging the show “overall, I chose works that best conveyed the theme I Am Woman. I was delighted to see a wide variety of mediums used with such skill.”
Ms. Bell selected the following (below) awards with comments:

First Place

Todd Baxter of Rock Hill, SC, Patterns, color pencil

There is a very feminine and wistful quality to this piece. The repeating curves of the body, couch, jewelry, and patterns reiterate the theme of woman. The strong diagonal of the pose and her upward gaze is a wonderful counterbalance. This piece is exquisite in its handling of the medium – the vertical marks while varying in pressure and hue are so interwoven as to give a unified surface. There are no hard shadows or shapes on the figure. Notice the subtlety of the hand in particular.

Second Place

Beth Oczkowski, Grace, paper

The quiet grace and inner strength of this figure is reminiscent of the Madonna of the Italian Renaissance. To achieve the modelling of the face through different values, hues, and irregular paper quilling is quite remarkable. Never have I seen paper sculpture or quilling (strips of paper rolled, shaped, glued together) raised to such a fine art. The artist has been able to convey the texture of the hair, skin, and fabrics as well as eyes that are alive.

Third Place

Sara Dame Setzer, Drawing at Bronco’s, oil

Setzer’s composition of women artists “en pleine aire” is unified by color and shape. The open area of the left front is balanced by the asymmetrical grouping of figures. Notice how change in scale and the linear perspective of the grass border ‘leads the eye into the background’. The blue shadows not only “ground” the figures but connect one to the next.

Merit Award

Marygrace Bianco, Unbound Heart, mixed media

Merit Award

Janice Booth, Daydream, gouache

Merit Award

Patricia Pietersen, Contemplation, photography

Merit Award

Shirley Brutko, I Got In Mommy’s Makeup, watercolor