Ellen Burke judged the artwork submitted by local artists for the Tongue in Cheek exhibition that opened January 5 at the Robeson Art Guild, 109 W. 9th Street in Lumberton. Judge Burke selected three art pieces to receive cash awards and honorable mentions for three other pieces. The exhibition is on display through March 2nd.
“How wonderful that you started the new year off with the courage to exhibit your work and to take a theme that is so playful and have some fun with it. It’s a wonderful exhibit and applause to everyone who participated. Participating is 99% having the courage to show your work. I think it’s wonderful. What an honor to be asked to Judge the exhibit. Thank you very much.”Ellen Burke, Judge of Tongue in Cheek Exhibition
First Place, $200:
Cabbage Sculpture Group Artist: Jim Tripp
For first place, the pottery group of cabbage leaves. It’s very clever, they’re beautifully done, and no two of the pieces are the same. There is a tremendous amount of movement, energy, and playfulness with the sculptural pieces in the center. I think it’s really a wonderful interpretation of the theme.
Second Place, $150:
Artist: Nila Chamberlain
For second place, I found very interesting the figures and jazz, it’s jazz and tremendous amount of movement, almost percussion in it, the colors that are used and repeated create this sense of movement and visual jazz. There’s a playfulness, a real energy about it. And I love that the artist didn’t overdo it, that there’s a spontaneous energy. That is what jazz: interpretive and spontaneous and high energy. I really, I really like that piece. It’s very nicely done.
Third Place, $50:
A Lily Among Us
Artist: Shantonia Chavis‐Bullard
For third place, I selected this one, a batik or perhaps acrylic on cloth. What I liked about this one is that I have recently done a lecture on Louis Comfort Tiffany and his glass and the innovation with glass and creating multiple colors in one piece of glass, and this piece reminded me of that. The artist chose to have this border around it that just sets off the center the way Tiffany did with a lot of his glass. And then this heavy black line reminded me of the structural nature of glasswork.
Within the glass I thought there was a lot of energy, and the artist used the fluidness of the color. Nicely balanced work. It was very interesting. There’s a lot of indication of nature here and many of the things that we eat start out as flowers, tomatoes, squash. an interesting interpretation of the theme. A lot of movement going through this with all the curves and a rhythm to it, too. Very nicely done.
Artist: Susie Brady
The watercolor of the plums was nicely done. I love the arc of the branch, the use of complementary colors, and that the artist didn’t just do brown limbs on it. That they had this very graceful branch with the fruit and this heaviness; oftentimes our paintings are more weighted at the bottom, yet here everything is up and it’s almost like we’re looking up into the plums to pick.
It’s brave to leave negative space. The artist did a nice job with that, letting some of the branches go right off the page and leaving some negative space that enhances the composition. Very nicely done with a map that complements the painting itself so beautifully.
Thank a Farmer
Artist: Connie Shurtz
In the humor category, this was a very clever interpretation of the topic, Tongue in Cheek. It was interesting with the vegetables and then how Southern to have fresh peanuts spilling out and have them be 3‐ dimensional and the cloth as well. That was just a very interesting take on the subject and required some real planning to make all that happen, the way it kind of flows out, coming into the viewers world, the peanuts are falling out. A very humorous and “tongue in cheek” kind of response to the theme.
Le Chasseur et Son Chien (The Hunter and His Dog)
Artist: Nila Chamberlain
The last honorable mention is a mixed media. There is a lot of texture and a lot of layers of interpretation there and the figure is directly in the center which oftentimes would stop you from looking other places, but, there are so almost veiled things behind that things start to come to the surface when you look at the painting I also think the vertical lines that run through it are interesting and the use of color, such as not letting that red top dominate as it is in the center. I find this to be a painting that you might spend some time looking at a little more carefully, which is something that we would always want.