95th Annual Spring Show Main Gallery
April 21 through July 1, 2018
The 95th Annual Spring Show celebrates works by artists living within a 250-mile radius of Erie. Each year the juror curates the exhibition in-person at the Museum, presents a lecture, and meets with students at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania. We are grateful to each of the 294 artists who entered this year’s show.
JUROR AWARD WINNER
Affect by Cappy Counard & Sue Amendolara
Statement from the artist: Sue Amendolara invited 20 respected friends and colleagues, based on the diversity of their personal aesthetics, to join her in a collaborative project. Each partner received a cast sterling silver shape and the directive to finish the collaboration in whatever way they chose. The resulting exhibition, 20/20, was a collection of artworks that, not surprisingly, differed greatly in style, shape, and scale. The piece Affect is my contribution to this collaborative project.
The cast silver object that Sue created sat at my workbench for many weeks as I contemplated how to respond to it. In the end, I chose to make a piece with Sue in mind, one that honors teachers and mentors. Two of the three circular components have been transformed by the impression of the silver shape, representing the mark that teachers leave. The third component, made from the original cast element, has been cut apart and extended to become a continuous circle. The act of sharing knowledge inevitably changes teachers as well, inspiring growth and evolution.
Metal is our usual medium of choice. So I knew that it would be ideal to create the impression of the original silver piece using chasing and repousse, forming and fabricating the silver sheet and wire. The smooth and warm surface of maple seemed like the perfect backdrop for the metalwork.
Sue and I have been teaching together in the Jewelry and Metalsmithing Program in the Edinboro University Art Department for 19 years.
JUROR AWARD WINNER
Sign of Life by Ken Coon
Statement from the artist:The scene of “Sign of Life” was painted just as the actual view appears. While visiting a relative in Michigan, I took a side trip to Sauder Village in northwest Ohio. I parked right in front of the sign and the view just screamed to be painted. I took several photo references to work from.
I saw the round form on the sign as almost a sun symbol, and the back of the sign being a grid of life experience: not all that beautiful and pretty rigid in design, as of many of us go through life. But even the most common of views there is beauty–not just physical beauty–but the beauty of life and being alive.
I work primarily on gessoed panels. Sign of Life is acrylic on panel, and I used the acrylic fairly similarly to how I use tempera. The hard surface of the panel works better for me to control detail and make adjustments as the work develops.
JUROR AWARD WINNER
Travelling Monochromes by Neil Donovan
Statement from the artist: This low-relief wooden sculpture is part of a series that explores a receding, lathe-turned surface surrounding a dark entrance or exit.
The curly maple forms, field, and frame were washed with white pigment to minimize distraction from the natural wood grain and color. My intention to convey an aesthetic of simplicity provided an adventure in both patience and craftsmanship. To achieve the depth of dark mahogany needed for the center holes, the maple rectangles were inlayed into the maple background field.
I am honored that Wendy Maruyama selected my simple piece. I have enthusiastically followed her work since the mid-eighties and feel as though she resides at the peak of the art-furniture mountain along with Castle and Nakashima.
I am also honored that Travelling Monochromes was selected for the 95th annual Erie Art Museum Spring Show. Similar to the institution, the Spring Show transcends Erie.
JUROR AWARD WINNER
Variations Within a Species by Valerie Mann
Statement from the artist: Variations Within a Species is the result of my time spent in the ornithology collection at the University of Michigan Museum of Natural History. This extensive collection of jewel-like birds began when the University was founded in 1817. In fact, I found the 19th century penmanship used to label these historical specimens almost as beautiful as the birds themselves!
I pay particular attention to birds’ intangible qualities in my work. I use wire as a three-dimensional line to ‘draw’ their outlines and build body mass. The birds are installed so that the wire drawing casts ‘shadow lines’ on the display wall. These pieces capture the birds in a clear, quiet way, describing their shapes while remaining vulnerable to air movement and directional light.
Most of my work is created from re-purposed materials and this piece is no exception. This practice has long been a pillar of my process, and I prefer the materials to shed evidence of their previous life. Working with re-purposed materials requires a lot of problem solving – my favorite part of making art. ‘Practice problem solving’ is the key phrase for my art making.
JUROR AWARD WINNER
My Spirit is Broken! by Carrie Shank
Statement from the artist: When I was creating this piece, I was going through withdrawal from 10 years of high-dose prescription opiates due to an accident and multiple, failed back surgeries that left me with rods and screws in my back.
I use my art as therapy to heal, and as a way to deal with my emotions. This image represents how brittle my body felt, and how I felt like I was just going to shatter! Some days I was down on the floor, on my hands and knees, crying in hopes the withdrawal symptoms would let up for an hour. There were times I was dizzy and in a fog, whereas other times I felt out of control and worthless. The multiple versions of the character represents how I felt as though I wasn’t even in my own body, the many different emotions I went through during this horrendous process.
My Spirit is Broken! represents the process of going through opiate withdrawal HELL and feeling lost, alone, shattered to pieces and having my spirit completely broken.
JUROR AWARD WINNER
Bo Sang by Herm Weber
Statement from the artist: Artist, architect, and Erie Art Museum Board Member, Herm Weber, credits his passion for photography and extensive travel throughout Asia as the inspiration behind Bo Sang. While teaching a course in architecture and design at Chiang Mai University in northern Thailand, Weber became enamored with its thriving artist culture. The second largest city in Thailand, Chiang Mai is considered by many as the country’s arts and crafts capital. Bo Sang, a village just outside of Chiang Mai, is a nexus of artisanal umbrella production. The village’s colorful and intricately-painted umbrellas, parasols, and fans are exported all over Asia.
His process starts with carefully composed digital photos, which are then “pushed and pulled” in Photoshop, and often included as collage elements in the finished paintings. Though not architectural in the narrow sense, Herm Weber’s paintings rely on composition, the use of light, layering, and repetition of elements and forms that are reflections of his architectural background.
NPAA AWARD WINNER
Carol Werder, All Creation Groans (Apokalypsis), 2018
Be a part of the 95th Annual Spring Show – deadline for entries is March 31.
Thursday, April 5 Spring Show Juror, Wendy Maruyama, will engage with students and faculty and present a free public lecture on Thursday, April 5, at 7 pm at Edinboro University’s Doucette Hall, Room 119.
Saturday, April 21
Museum members, donors and artists who entered the exhibition are invited to a special reception from 6:30 – 8:30 on Saturday, April 21 (memberships available at the door). The awards ceremony is at 8 p.m.
Sunday, April 22
The public is invited to a free reception on Sunday April 22, from 1–3 p.m.
Are you a Member of the Museum? Please consider becoming a member. We have memberships that start at $20/year and include benefits such as discounts on framing, classes and the Museum gift shop. (Members entering three works save $30 on entry fees.)
Furniture maker, artist, and educator Wendy Maruyama has been making innovative work for 40 years, challenging the accepted notions of furniture by combining traditional studio craft with humor, social commentary, sculptural forms, and color. Conceptually her work deals with social practices such as her Japanese-American heritage, feminism, and wildlife endangerment in Africa. Inspired by a sojourn to Kenya, her wildLIFE Project is a new body of work informed by the issues and problems of poaching and its impact on wildlife.
Wendy Maruyama has been a professor of woodworking and furniture design for over 30 years. She is one of the first two women to graduate with a Masters in furniture making from Rochester Institute of Technology. Maruyama has exhibited her work nationally for over four decades, with solo shows in New York City, San Francisco, Scottsdale, Indianapolis, Savannah, and Easthampton. She has exhibited internationally in Tokyo, Seoul and London. Maruyama’s work can also be found in museum collections, including the Victoria and Albert Museum, London; Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas; Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery, Launceston, Australia; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Philadelphia Museum of Art; Museum of Art and Design, New York; Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles; Mint Museum of Art, Charlotte; Fuller Craft Museum, Brockton; Mingei International Museum, San Diego; and the Oakland Museum of California. Maruyama is a recipient of several prestigious awards, including the California Civil Liberties Public Education Grant, 2010; several National Endowment for the Arts Grants for Visual Artists; the Japan/US Fellowship; and a Fulbright Research Grant to work in the UK.
In addition to serving as juror for the Spring Show,Maruyama will engage with students and faculty and
present a free public lecture on Thursday, April 5, at 7 pm at Edinboro University’s Doucette Hall, Room 119.
The Erie Art Museum is pleased to partner once again with
the Art Department of Edinboro University of Pennsylvania to bring Wendy Maruyama to Erie.