Nassau Valley Vineyards and Winery May 2023
1st Place-Cafe Monet by Christine Heyse
2nd Place-Farm Fresh by Isabel Pizzolato
3rd Place-Dave by Winnifred Way
Merit Awards: Garden Peony- Sarah Bernhardt by Anne Crown-Cyr, Blue Heron by Kathleen Cropper, and Winery Welcome by Joan Fabbri
Juror and Awards Judge, Ellen Elmes, is acclaimed for her unique collage style blend of symbolic imagery and flowing naturalism. A watercolor artist, muralist, author of a memoir An Appalachian Labyrinth: Painting to the Center and retired community college teacher, Elmes has enjoyed decades of creative exploration with her husband Don from atop Jewel Ridge in the Appalachian Mountains of Southwest Virginia.
Ellen has commented on her choices of awards “the paintings I’ve chosen for top awards are good examples of dual exceptionalism. Cafe Monet pulls the viewer in with its form and embracement of warmth and a jazzy melody of shape and color. The painting’s content continues to invite with imagined conversation and timely post-Covid togetherness. All are welcome to delight in this watercolor!
Farm Fresh charms the viewer in a different way winging us back to the Dutch masters of still life with classical style of form, a Vermeer-like intrigue with the beauty of texture and pattern. Most impressive is the artist’s ability to fashion the intricate basketry design and the absolute “egg-ness” of their subjects in the watercolor medium.
In the portrait of Dave there is an expression of character in his face that goes deeper than a likeness, inviting the viewer to remember this man without having met him. The form of this painting adds additional insight into the subject. The complement of cool swirled, soft shapes against the warm facial colors suggest an active life, weathered and perhaps struggling, yet ruddered by optimism suggested in a smile.”