West Main Artists Co-op to Host Its First Juried Exhibition Sept.-Oct.
West Main Artists Co-op will host its first regional juried art exhibition -- WMAC 2019 -- opening on Saturday, Sept. 14, and closing on Saturday, Oct. 19, in Spartanburg, SC.
The show was open to all adult visual artists in South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, and Tennessee. The first-place winner will receive $2,500; second-place, $1,000; third-place, $500; and merit awards will total $500. Two-hundred-forty-one (241) artists from the four states applied, and 66 were admitted into the show based on the judgement of jurors Ann DerGara and Mike Vatalaro. These jurors will also work together to pick the final winners, which will be announced on Saturday, Sept. 21, during a reception and awards ceremony. Seventy-four (74) works of art will be on display.
“This exhibit has been a goal of West Main Artists Cooperative for several years. We are celebrating our 10th anniversary this year and felt the time was right. What better way to celebrate our hard work than to open our doors to artists from four states and let them celebrate with us. Spartanburg is becoming a “cultural destination” and this exhibit will only enhance that reputation. We are grateful for the support from this community. As Spartanburg grows and thrives, so do we. When artists and a community work together – we all benefit. “
The artwork in WMAC 2019 will be open for free public viewing Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4p.m. A public reception will be Saturday, Sept. 21, 6-8 with an awards ceremony at 7pm. Another reception will be held on Thursday, Sept. 19, 5-9 p.m., during the city’s monthly ArtWalk.
Work accepted into the exhibition includes painting, pastel, drawing, sculpture, ceramics, glass, photography, fiber arts, original hand-pulled fine art prints, jewelry, weaving, basketry, and wood. Nearly all of the work will be for sale.
Ann DerGara began her formal education at Georgia State University. In 1978, a printmaking course at Atlanta College of Art led her to Dick Williams and the innovative and contemporary Odyssey Studio. The artist first pursued etching, collagraphy, and serigraphy printmaking techniques. In 1990 she began her exploration of monoprinting. Roger Caplan of Soho Myriad Fine Art has written, “Looking back on a career that has seen her work exhibited in Europe, Japan and Australia as well as the United States, one is struck by the constant and apparently effortless development of imagery and technique which has left Ann DerGara three steps ahead of familiar imitators.” A practitioner of both abstract and realistic styles, DerGara is the owner of the Red Wolf Gallery in Brevard, NC.
MikeVatalaro has more than 40 years of experience as a professor and studio artist. His work, which includes wood-fired stoneware thrown vessels as well as large terra cotta sculptural forms, has been exhibited nationally and internationally. In 1998, he participated in the IWCAT Workshop and Ceramics Exhibition at Cera Gallery in Tokoname, Japan, and was an Artist Resident at Tainan University of the Arts in Taiwan (2008). His work has been recognized with several grants and awards such as the South Carolina Arts Commission Fellowship for Crafts (1994-1995 and l983-l984), the Walter Gropius Visiting Artist Fellowship in Huntington West Virginia, and the Watershed Center for Ceramic Art Residency at Newcastle, ME (2004).
“Coordinating WMAC 2019 has been in the making for more than a year,” Regula said. “Having a regional juried exhibition is something we believe is very important in the advancement of the Co-op and in the advancement of the arts in Spartanburg. Art has become a vital force to be reckoned with in Spartanburg, and West Main Artists Co-op is leading the way for regional artists. Our membership includes some of the region’s most noted artists. Our exhibits include artists from many different regions of the southeast. I invite everyone to see this very important exhibition, knowing it is the product of much work and high standards. It will have some of the best art to be found in the four states. As the name implies -- WMAC 2019 -- we plan to make this an annual event!”
West Main Artists Co-op is a nonprofit and membership-based arts agency, housed on West Main Street in Spartanburg in a converted three-story church. It has more than 50 active members of which about 30 have studio space in the venue. Each month, it hosts three art exhibits and is one of the more-popular venues to visit during the city’s monthly ArtWalk. In addition, it has three galleries, two performance stages, a ceramics studio, a printery, and the most extensive collection of for-sale and locally made art in Spartanburg. For more information, please visit online: WestMainArtists.org.
Paintings | Ceramics | Printmaking | Jewelry | Photography | Fiber Arts | Sculpture | Glass Work | and Much More!