Juror's Statement | Return to Exhibition
The “9th Annual Collage, Digital & Mixed Media Juried Online International Art Exhibition” is one of the very best of all the hundreds of exhibitions showcased by Upstream People Gallery. There are some wonderful artists whose level of creativity and artistic skill is truly exceptional. Following are some comments recognizing some of the artists and their works.
Faith Allen of San Francisco, CA has some magnificent prints in the show with a very clever play on words. “Miss.Demeanor” shows a low camera angle with the fancifully dressed brunette looking down. The loosely woven and black outfit with bright red lipstick and two lateral red roses in the hair are indeed dramatic. “Miss.Errie Loves Company" shows the heavily painted half closed alluring eyes in black and white appeal. “Miss.Fortunate” is similar to the later but with more color showing an extravagant display of dramatic costuming with feathers, furs and a heart crown. “Miss.Informed” is a close up portrait with an outlandish yet delicately laced golden headdress, very curly hair with a small golden bird, nicely rouged cheeks and awesome eye makeup. And “Miss.Interpreted” shows the woman whose face is reflected in a mirror with an ornate frame held sideways. All of Allen’s work is a testament to a rich imagination and a great sense of style.
Robin Antar of Brooklyn, NY is a super realist sculptress. Her attention to accuracy and detail is phenomenal especially seen in her limestone carving of a denim jacket appropriately titled “Jacket”. The folds, the buttons, the pockets and cuffs are superbly carved out. Another strong work is “Jeans” which shows a pair of jeans as if hanging from something. It’s amazing to see the accuracy of the zipper and even the lettering on the tags are very convincing.
Michael Baum of Spearfish, SD has several interesting uses of acrylic and mixed media. One of the most effective is his work “Vertigo” in which the face of a youth whose open mouth is boldly outlined creating a motif of circularity throughout the piece typifying the “going around and around” or a sense of spinning.
Betty Bay of Casselberry, FL shows an acrylic work entitled “Eat or Be Eaten”. Herein is a very strong expressive show of birds and other creatures with the dripping paint technique emphasizing the aggressive message. The use of red and yellow with black help to communicate the action.
Rose Becker of Hackensack, NY is an avid photographer in the sense of capturing a repertoire of various events in life. One of the most striking of these is “Boston Traffic” which shows the compaction of very many back-to-back cars on a multi-steel framed bridge. Besides the unusual high eye level of the viewer, perhaps a sensation of impatience is captured.
David Blow of Hickory Creek, TX is a master of the digital medium. One of the most significant pieces is his work “Wake Up!” in which he graphically pronounces the current concern for the situation of global warming. The use of the eye configuration speaks well about the notion of opening our eyes to the importance of going green and helping our environment.
Adam Cady of Ashland, WI has accomplished the use of mixed media in an interactive way. His sculpture piece “Frail Protest” plays the use of linear manipulation of various materials which demonstrates a visual excitement, yet the make-up is of fragile media making for an interesting intended contrast.
Tao Chen of Racine, WI shows quite a range of visual vocabulary. Especially nice is his “Sweet Wall” exquisitely composed of tasty delights such as chocolate and breath savers. His digital illustration is well handled in terms of nuances and tonal gradations.
Yue Chen of Manhattan, KS combines charcoal, chalk and ink to create “Over Here 01”, a vertical drama with a black and white intrigue with some rather sharp orange accents. The idea of looking over here from over there is rather catchy.
Ryan Cummings of Chapel Hills, NC has accomplished some astonishing and original uses of mixed media in a landscape format. “A Gathering in the Hills - Reidsville, N.C.” with its naturally warm coloration gives glimpses of the human character with collaged snapshots of individual and groups of people. The gold leaf usage gives it a quality of sincerity. With the intensity of yellow he composes “Burning Harbinger - Sunrise Over The Florida Keys as Katrina Churns in The West” depicting the same signature concept using the calmness found in the pictures to contrast with the situation. And in his “Morning Cauldron - The Harbinger and The Hunters” the contrasting golden light and dark umber tones lends well to the dawning of the day and the outreaching hands suggesting a kind of anticipation.
Iwona Duszek of Springfield, MO shows some highly skilled collages as digital prints. The unusual mechanical parts are fascinating in the context of making them into human beings as seen in her work “Enchantment”. Also strong is the piece “Universal Traveller” in which the alphabet, measuring devices and dials are used in a colorful red, blue and orange schema.
Brandon Ellis of Flower Mound, TX beautifully photographs a mother and child theme in his “Urban Madonna” a piece which emphasizes the loving care warmly represented against the backdrop of the grayed city skyline.
Alana Farrell of Zurich, Switzerland in “Milch (Milk)” boldly and graphically portrays a range of human expression in black, white and red. The play of the past influence on the personalities of the feminine and the masculine imagery is compelling.
Joan Fitzgerald of Athol Springs, NY has an interesting series richly and generously painted in red with collage aspects. “The Native” is one in the series that plays the theme of natural imagery contributing to a merging of technology and a kind of neo-expressiveness.
Linda Rudin Frizzell of Shelton, WA predominately uses fabric with several mediums added to create some very rich statements visually. One of the most striking is “Leaves” in which metallics bring out the two centrally placed leaves. The beadwork here is also very attractive in a decorative sense. “Treble Clef” is another very fine work abstractly representing the treble clef symbol with a somewhat high key value placement in the center especially with the light reflectivity of the beadwork and silk.
Angela Giusto of Pasadena, MD presents some sophisticated infrared digital photography. Her work entitled “Sunday” is perhaps the most conceptually appealing considering the treatment of the tree in light against the dark sky. The tilted telephone pole/cross structure in the near distance plays no minor role in this piece.
Edward I. C. Kinney of Savannah, GA uses a rather soft and refined tonality in his contributions to the show. “Tonight With An Eye On Cuba” varies somewhat from his other pieces in its asymmetry. The open and tilted grid work of Xs overlapping Florida leading down to the area of Cuba with the dancing and happy faced girl and other imagery is nicely counter balanced with flowers, a microphone and a friendly “Saludos Amigos”. In all his work he displays the flawlessness of a accomplished professional.
Jasmine Kukic of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada is able to use collage to create a mysterious situation in which a person looks into a framed picture of someone else looking onto a ghostlike figure with long hair similar to the first viewer - "Vanishing" is quite interesting.
Thomas M. Little of Shreveport, LA shows the use of current media, however in his piece “Stream of Consciousness 3” he deals with the traditional media of graphite and ink. The elaborate doodling type patterning serves as a backdrop for the red line moving across the piece stopping only at a cutout of the brick wall then picking up again on the other side. This break in the stream is a strong contrast.
Connie Livingston-Dunn of Springville, TN has mastered the digital media in the wonderful layering of imagery which is quite successful in her piece “Dreamer”. The fanciful fractalizing overlapping the brain area of the silver-like face portrays the idea well.
Kathleen Madigan of Nashville, TN adds a touch of light humor in her piece “Curious Sort of Monument” giving credibility to what may seem ordinary. The circles, dish drainer, yellow green, pink and blue with kitchen utensils are all handsomely arranged. Speaking of handsome, her display “Winter Sycamore II” with the two- and three-dimensional treatment together with the fabric’s repeated rectangular parts echoing the pieces of the mosaic vase and the warm and cool contrast of color, altogether make for a sophisticated artwork.
Sari Maxfield of Chicago, IL has a unique approach with media. Her ink painting on mylar piece “In My Sister’s Garden” the complementary colors of violet and yellow and the liquidity of the ink help to interrelate the two sisters. This fluidity is quite marvelous indeed.
James Mazza of Tallahassee, FL is another one of our master digital artists in this show. His piece “A Broken Pain” playing with the word window pane, gives a striking visualization of a broken area of the window which shows two young children walking along a roadway. There is much to consider in this one. In his work “Now It’s Dark 1” there is the youthful component depicted in a happy young child looking in the direction of a mirror reflecting another road. The brick wall, the flower and the bridge all add to the intrigue. “Now It’s Dark 2” is another rich interplay of imagery showing again a dreamlike, surrealistic quality. Also in his piece “Wedding Day” the window theme appears suggesting a kind of time sequence showing the wedded couple. The lace, the lamp, the closed eyes, the wheat, the skull and the plants all bring about rich contemplation.
Hariclia Michailidou of New York, NY has been involved with a body of work called the “Cosmic Shores” series. One of his most striking is the computer collage “1.1.50”. Here the deep blue-violet spherical areas and the large pieces with the multiple small pieces give a great sense of depth and complexity. The light and dark interplay adds greatly to the dramatic appeal.
Kathy Mitchell of Iowa City, IA manifests a great talent with assemblage in her piece “Family Mausoleum”. Memorabilia of different family members attached to the chairs around a table, together with other aspects of the family arranged on the table and the skulls and angels all pay tribute to the family unit. The pillars with the canopy are special additions. This is a magnificent work!
Dale O’Dell of Prescott, AZ in a rather surrealistic mode captures the imagination in several works in the show. “Blue Skies Beckon” is a rich display of the geometric building structure with windows of the blue sky and organic trees also with windows of the blue sky. “Bring the Camera” is another very imaginative work handled digitally. Here again there’s the tall trees with built structures and a young man in the foreground with camera in hand with a group of adults in the background. In “The Path to Enlightenment” he uses the tall trees together with the tall church-like arches and columns with emanating light shining down from above. The pathway in the foreground is like an invitation. Another fine work is his piece “Today is Special” in which the large tree has an opening showing a restaurant scene with a greeting sign saying “Today’s Special”. This is contrasted with a young person in red sitting on a large green leaf that floats above the gound. The child is enjoying a sucker in hand - a great day is right.
Pawel Opalinski of Kielce SW, Poland shows off his creativity in an interesting approach with surrealism. “Profanum: One” is very strong in the red and green contrast as well as the overlay of two faces. “Profanum: Two” shows a seated man holding onto a briefcase, the coloration of which is repeated throughout the earth toned composition. “Profanum: Three” is handled very nicely with overlays of rich textural qualities, with another seated figure. “Profanum: Four” shows a wonderful play of light with three vessels, one of which overlaps the head of the figure.
Dawn Revett of San Francisco, CA has some outstanding work that stands out in terms of her messages and strong bold colors. In yellow-green and red-violet she collages the work “Advocate” - Proud Sponsor of You - how positive and supportive can you get? - A great message!!! Out with the old, out with the old, out with the old; hate aging, hate aging, hate aging - yes, this work entitled “Mantra” is strongly communicated. Her use of large mouths the size of the head loudly announces these statements. “Till Death Do Us Part” a phrase used in the marriage ceremony, used here in the context of commentary about botox as a secret to success. Here perhaps it’s "Only A Game” applies.
Barbara Rogoff of Los Angeles, CA has a rich sensibility with collage work. In her piece “Expires 06:33 p.m.” she uses the park ticket as a take off point showing another tag and the use of pink and a green gold complementary corner piece. Quite nice is her piece “Nighttime.......is the Right Time” in which she uses half the composition with a bluish pixelized print contrasted with gold cardboard. A sewed picture of a little bird in mostly black and white is counter balanced with a large sewed-on button of blue and gold. Another of her works that deal with contemporary objects and patterns with more dated ones is seen in her work “Yours, Mine and Ours”.
Chuck Scalin of Richmond, VA has some nicely crafted glass assemblages. “FGW/8” shows a grid backdrop whose lines seem to breath with lines that are light in some areas and darker in other areas. The central treatment with the rust orange with a large “X”, next to an area of black, and the straight reddish lines at the bottom contrasted with the curvilinear red line at the top, characterize a well developed abstraction.
Barbara Schneider of Neuss, Germany colorfully and photographically depicts various images in her sculptural work “Our World Cultures”. The softness of the cotton sewed into square blocks is quite refreshing in approach.
C. P. Seibt of Parikia / Paros, Greece has several awesome sculptures in this show. His bold use of color and painterly qualities speak loudly of a rich presence. “Deep Sea Relatives” (1) is dramatic in its orange and green and red and black parts together with the opposite positioning of the black and white section. “Deep Sea Relatives” (2) is strong in the thick textural painting and the curved and straight contrast, coupled with the strong bright red going through from top to bottom. In his “Double Reality” (1) he contrasts 3-d with 2-d; large with small, bright with dull to arrive at an astounding work of art. “Inout” (1) and (2) are strong in black and white and outlined figuration. And his “Trojan Horse” is quite playful and rich in the warm and cool and the vertical constructions on a plane with the four circular elements as wheels carrying it all.
Arriba Stature of North Bend, WA gives some very strong digital pieces with a biomorphic quality. One is "Birth of the Moebus" showing a curvilinear intersection of orange and blue, patterned and smooth areas merging. And in "Life on a Slide" there is a more desaturated coloration of blue, violet and green with rich blurred patterning suggesting motion.
Carol Staub of Somerset, NJ has masterfully developed a mixed media collage style. Especially strong is her work “Frontier” wherein parts seem to be in the foreground while the top blackened area tends to recede. This generously textured work is compelling in the brushwork countered with the hard edged pieces.
Sachiko Sukegawa of Diamond Bar, CA in “Genko-an (Hope & Stress)” uses mixed media to deal with the dichotomy of a good/bad concept. Nicely framed, the fabric print indicating a birdlike image in a neutralized green suggests the hope aspect, while the active black and white, gray and red linear arrangement of the rectangular section suggests stress.
Fritz Suter of Van Nuys, CA has accomplished a rendition of what turbulence could look like in his mixed media piece “Earthquake”. The brightly colored curvilinear passages and the loosely splattered areas creates a very moving yet somewhat agitated expression.
Toni Tiller of Wilton, CT brings some interesting concepts in collage form. “With Every Deed You Are Sowing A Seed Though The Harvest You May Not See” is a profound thought herein represented by a face looking up through a bluish gridded section contrasted with a contrasting organic passageway up to a broken open eggshell suggesting perhaps that what we do, what we create, what we open up, has an effect, even if we don’t realize it.
Cara Walz of Kansas City, MO is very imaginative in that her artwork uses jars and objects to mean scribbles - how unusual. “Scribble Jars #20, #44, #21” goe nicely together. The dark interior curvy (scribbles) items complement the black lids. And another trio that works well is “Scribble Jars #25, #34, #04” in that the inside objects are somewhat blurred in a kind of translucency.
Phillip A. Windell (aka paw fotograf) of Pittsburgh, PA photographs reflections found in store windows in his "direct captures" digital works, an exciting urban scene with the fast paced and complex interplay in his work “Order Here” showing the helpful signage amidst it all. In his work “Twisted Escalator” he overlays the escalator image with areas of commercial shops. Capturing more of the city life he creates “Urban Grid” which is a compelling contrast of the architectural geometric with the organic trees, plants and people.
Many thanks to all the participating artists whose works were selected because of the significance of meaning inherent in the artworks and due to the high proficiency of skill in the use of various media. Upstream People Gallery wishes each a continued successful career.
Professor of Art, Curator of Upstream People Gallery