Wednesday, January 17, 2001

Painters compete for cash

Contest selects 10 finalists

By Jenny Callison
Enquirer Contributor

        OXFORD - A new endowment at Miami University is helping emerging artists experience a brush with fame.

        Ten finalists have been selected in the university's annual Young Painters Competition. Their artwork, abstract and whimsical, is on display at Miami's Hiestand Galleries. Jurors Angela Lange, a curator at New York's Museum of Modern Art, and Lon Beck, professor of painting at Miami, will next select winners of the $10,000 William and Dorothy Yeck Award, $1,500 second prize and $1,000 third prize.

[photo] Artwork by the 10 finalists in Miami University's Young Painters Competition is displayed at the Hiestand Galleries on campus.
(Michael Snyder photo)
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        The finalists' works were chosen by Ms. Lange from more than 1,200 entries received from 243 artists in 42 states. This is the second year for the competition, which last year drew entries from 133 artists.

        The competition is supported by a gift from the Yecks, of Dayton, Ohio. Mr. Yeck is a 1936 graduate of Miami University.

        “This is a prominent national program that will enhance our reputation,” said Jerry Morris, chairman of the art department. “When you have a $10,000 purchase prize, that opens some eyes.”

    • What: Miami University's Young Painters Competition exhibition; companion exhibition of works of last year's winner, Adriana Burgos.
    • When: Through Feb. 10; reception and announcement of winners at 4 p.m. Jan. 25
    • Where: Hiestand Galleries, Maple Street, Oxford
    • Information: 529-1883.
        All Yeck award winners become the property of Miami.

        “Each competition will add another painting to Miami's collection, which will be displayed throughout the university,” said Sara Joseph, gallery director.

        “The historical value of this competition is that Miami University will document the development of painting throughout the entire 21st century,” Mr. Morris said.

        Adam Wolter, who teaches art at Indian Hill High School and lives in Mount Washington, is one of the finalists. He said the announcement came as a surprise.

        “Most of my efforts are usually devoted to my teaching,” he said. “Being recognized as an artist is kind of nice.”

        To draw other students to the show, the competition added a “student choice” category and invites Miami students to cast a ballot for their favorite. The winner of this category will receive $500.

        Soon after the show opened Tuesday, first-year student Nita Williams of Cincinnati lingered over the entries before voting for the work of Tara Giannini.

        “I liked the detail in her work,“ Ms. Williams said. “That set it apart.”


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