From an October 28, 2021, Northwest Watercolor Society press release.
Juror Thomas W Schaller announced the winners of the 81st International Open Online Exhibition at Northwest Watercolor Society’s (NWWS) awards reception on October 22nd.
The top three prizes went to Lance Hunter of Oklahoma, Tiantian Ji of China, and Lynda Hoffman-Snodgrass of Oregon.
The exhibition is free for viewing at www.nwws.org from now through January 4, 2022.
Schaller explained his criteria at the beginning of introducing the 75 paintings accepted into the exhibition.
“Judging work is an honor but it is extremely difficult,” he said.
He went on to say, “There has to be the artistic impulse, an electric jolt of intent that is the umbrella. Then the composition of shapes, the value range and the colors that carry emotional weight are orchestrated to create an experience and a dialog with the viewer. The painting makes you ask questions.”
The first place prize of $2,000 was awarded to Lance Hunter’s “Without Reason.”
“The beautiful elongated format with a busy background illuminates the skin tones and drapery of the gown,” Schaller commented.
He went on to say, “The drapery alone is worth hours of study.”
Hunter is a professor of art at Northeastern State University in Oklahoma.
Second place of $1,300 went to Tiantian Ji from China for his painting, “Fishing Port.”
“I can feel myself standing there. This is an admirable painting in contrasts – what is there and what is not there,” Schaller spoke of Ji’s work. “This is a whispered experience.”
Lynda Hoffman-Snodgrass of Phoenix, Oregon, was awarded $800 for third place for her painting, “Riding the Waves.”
“There’s a sense of life and energy in this painting that is so beautifully watercolor. The wet on wet, lost edges, the shapes and brush marks,” Schaller pointed out in Lynda’s abstract.
Twelve other awards of cash and merchandise were also awarded.
Schaller, who is an NWWS signature member among his many memberships including American Watercolor Society (AWS) and National Watercolor Society (NWS), said of NWWS that it is “the most engaged [of watercolor societies]. You care about the arts, artists and art education together to make something very unique.”
The awards reception was recorded and can be seen for free at https://www.nwws.org/Exhibitions/Annual-International-Open.
For those interested in purchasing a painting you’ve fallen in love with in the exhibition, contact the NWWS treasurer, Shirley at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tiantian Ji's “Fishing Port.” Image courtesy of Northwest Watercolor Society.
Lynda Hoffman-Snodgrass's, “Riding the Waves.” Image courtesy of Northwest Watercolor Society.