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Sunday, March 2, 2003 E-mail This Article
“Eve’s Offering” by Patricia Gianotti of North Hampton. (Photos by John Nash)

Creative rewards: Currier Museum recognizes work of many area artists

By JOHN NASH

Sunday Citizen Correspondent

For some, it’s simply a nice honor to be included. For others, it’s a validation of their work and their ideas.

The 55th annual New Hampshire Art Association Exhibition, currently on display at the Currier Museum of Art in Manchester, is much like art itself as it has so many different meanings to so many different people.

“Sprawlviewer” by Tim Gaudrea of Portsmouth

A number of local artists were honored by the NHAA by having their work included in the exhibition, which will be on display at Currier until March 17. A handful of others earned awards for their work by a single juror’s decision.

According to NHAA administrator Angus Locke, the quality of the work on display is a tribute to the talent of the state’s artists.

"Word is getting out and people are submitting better quality work more and more often," Locke said. "I think people are more conscious of art, going to museums and other galleries, maybe taking some courses. Overall, the quality of the work seems to be getting better and better every year in every medium; not just painting, but in photography, etchings, sculptures."

More than 200 entrants were pared down to just 79 pieces by juror Joanna Sulton, curator at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Soltan chose Patricia Schappler of Hudson as winner of the Currier Museum Art Award, or the "Best in Show" award.

Winning any award, though, proved to be an honor.

"It’s a very rewarding thing," said Rosalind Fedeli of York, Maine, who won the Friel Award for Originality for an assemblage piece entitled "Radio City Music Hall." In it, the artists used mirrors and eggs to show repetition.

"The odds are pretty big. It’s very flattering, I’m very flattered," Fedeli said.

"Tim Gaudreau, a photographer based out of Portsmouth, likes to make a statement with his artwork and feels the honor of winning an award and being included in the show makes all his efforts worth while.

"For me, it’s especially exciting to win an award because it’s a validation of the work I’m doing as an artist," Gaudreau, 33, said. "It’s important. When you’re working in a studio, it’s difficult to get to know how your audience is responding to your work."

Gaudreau’s entrant is a political statement that takes a unique look at sprawl — already a growing concern in New Hampshire and Maine.

"It’s eco-based art, which raises political issues about how we as a culture relate to the natural world," he explained. "Often, my work is somewhat political and confrontational with the intent of promoting discussion on environmental issues. For that piece to win an award is exciting. It means people get it."

“Dark Days” by Diana Kirkpatrick of Portsmouth

Having artwork included at any show at Currier is a boost for both the ego and the resume, Locke said.

"It’s a big deal," he said. "If they (artists) can put on their resume that they’ve been in a show at the Currier, that’s one of the more prestigious shows to get into. Many times jurors are looking not just for quality of the work, but maturity of artistic concept and mastery of the medium."

Local award winners included: Tim Christensen-Kirby of Milton, who won the Forrest D. McKerly Award for Sculpture; Gaudreau of Portsmouth, who won the Ezekiel A. Straw Memorial Award; Carol Van Loon of Dover, who won the Dr. Paul and Duddy Costello Memorial Award; Holly Elkins of Eliot, Maine, who won the Eugenai Georgopoulos Memorial Award for Drawing; Fedeli of York, Maine, who won the Friel Award for Originality; and Chris Calivas of North Berwick, Maine, who won the Rosmond DeKalb Memorial Award.

Other local artists who have their work on exhibit include: J. Richardson Adams of Hampton, Judith Heller Cassell of Rochester, Beverly Conway of Dover, Jack Davis of Dover, Arthur DiMambro of Durham, Anne O. Dubois of Eliot, Maine, Patricia Gianotti of North Hampton, Stephen Gianotti of North Hampton, Adeline Goldminc-Tronzo of Eliot, Maine, Joan S. Harlow of Epping, Don Hirst of Durham, Edith Holley of Dover, Nancy Davis Johnson of Durham, Jane Kaufmann of Durham, Diana Kirkpatrick of Portsmouth, Nan LaMontagne of Exeter, Jerry MacMichael of Winnisquam, Anastasia Maertens of York, Maine, Allan McCulloch of Gilmanton, Carl Peterson of Exeter, Gail E. Sauter of Kittery, Maine, Ann O. Smith of Strafford, Edna Morris Smith of Rochester, Molly Stark of Campton, Mary Margaret Sweeney of Kittery, Maine, Rose Sielian Theriault of Rochester, Robert Thoresen of Portsmouth, Ann Tolson of Portsmouth, Nancy T. Wiatt of York, Maine, and Grace Youngren of Rochester.

The Currier Museum of Art is located at 201 Myrtle Way, Manchester. Hours are Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. It is closed on Tuesday.

© 2003 Geo. J. Foster Company

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