Winners for Small Wonders 2022 Art Exhibit and Competition

On view February 1-25, 2022

We had a great turnout of artists and visitors for the reception Saturday night. Our juror, Seymour Simmons along with his wife Martine attended. Mr. Simmons was on hand to speak with artists after the awards were presented. Everyone was impressed with the quality and the quantity of artwork in the show. Thirty seven artists entered 106 pieces of artwork to be judged. Mr. Simmons selected First, Second and Third Place awards along with three merit awards. First Place went to Jenna Webb for her linocut “In the Greenhouse”.  Second Place went to Lorene Lovell for her watercolor “A Place to Ponder”. Third Place went to Mari Matamoros for her acrylic painting “Pollination no.2”.  Merit Awards were given to Dianne W. Garner for her mixed media piece “Pukeko”; to Shelby Sabelli for her watercolor “Boots”; and to Jan Welborn for “Autumn Path” done in oil pastel pencil.
Several pieces sold during the reception. Small works are a great way to collect and purchase art for gifts. This show is only up thru February 25, so get by soon to see the show and make a purchase.

Winners for Small Wonders with Juror’s Comments:

First Place $250 

artist Jenna Webb with her first place work.

Jenna Webb – In The Greenhouse – linocut 

At first sight, this seemed like a simple, straight forward print, but I kept coming back to it and finding more in it. First, I noticed the bold cropping of the figure at the neck, which you’re never supposed to do (remember the guillotine?), but it somehow works, keeping attention on the interior space, where a quiet reader is no more important than her plants. Then there are the plants themselves, each with its own shape and pattern, all adding to the rhythm of the whole.

Second Place $150

Second Place watercolor by Lorene Lovell. 
Lorene Lovell – A Place to Ponder – watercolor

My first impression of this piece was how well it was crafted, and the harmony between the painting and the silver frame. As I kept coming back to it, I began to appreciate how much depth is implied in such a slim, vertical landscape. It pulls you in and envelopes you in a magical world where the mysterious-looking leaves and vines suggest that almost anything could happen. At the same time, the title reminds us that this is a place not of action but of reflection.

Third Place $75

Artis Mari Matamoros with her third place work.
Mari Matamoros – Pollination no.2 – acrylic

As an almost exclusively figurative artist, I’m always happy to find an abstract painting that holds my attention and helps me remember that art doesn’t always need to look like something. So, the first thing that caught my eye about this piece was the playfulness of the marks, lines, and shapes, which all added up to layer upon layer of energetic interaction. But like the previous piece, the title gives it another layer of meaning, which is not abstract at all!

Merit Award $50

Merit award winning sculprure of a gourd bird.
Dianne W. Garner – Pukeko – mixed media

If we still had young children or grandchildren, I would have bought this piece and taken it home to them, but I wouldn’t let them play with it! It looks like a toy or a piece of folk-art, but it’s so delicately crafted, and I wouldn’t want any spills to mess up those colorful splotches across its body or an accidental tumble that would compromise the curious expression on its face. Like the others, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, but every part counts.

Merit Award $50

Artist Shelby Sabelli with her merit award winning work.
Shelby Sabelli – Boots – watercolor

I was born and raised in Colorado where my father worked for a western-ware company, and I spent many summers in the store selling boots. So, I couldn’t pass up this painting, which captures the feel, and almost the smell, of well-worn boots. As in “A Place to Ponder,” the frame is a good match for the painting. Whether you touch the frame or not, the wood and metal add a tactile quality, recalling the kinds of surfaces where you find old boots like that.

Merit Award $50

Artits Jan Welborn with merit award winning work.
Jan Welborn – Autumn Path – oil pastel pencil

Like “In the Greenhouse,” this is a picture that conveys a quiet, still, but living space. It was also one of those I had to keep coming back to in order to appreciate all that went into it, especially the thought given to its textures and color relationships. If the artist wasn’t working on the spot, in plein air, she must have been remembering visits to places like that as she built up her marks, because it captures so vividly, but delicately, the mood we often feel that time of year.