by Janet Roberts

Lee Grantham's first place award pieces
On Friday, the 6th of February, the Southeast Chapter of WP&S had the opening reception for its annual member’s show, this year titled Visual Mix. And as the words suggest, the artwork so carefully and thoughtfully arranged and hung in the Union Art Gallery of UW-Milwaukee’s Union Building was a true mixture of styles, subject matter, mediums and visual messages.

Steven Jaeger, the Gallery Manager of the Union Art Gallery proved to be a most gracious host for this show, and not only provided the venue, but arranged for musicians and catered food for the reception. His capable staff was on hand from the drop off of pieces to the hanging of the show, and deserves our thanks for their hard work.

Ralph Russo, the Program Director for the Cultural Arts at UW-Madison served as the juror. He selected 58 pieces from almost double that number of entries, and chose seven artists to receive awards. The Best of Show was awarded to Lee Grantham for his acrylic on plexiglass pieces. Tom Eddington took the second place award with his wood sculptures, and Tori Tasch won the third place award for her mixed media on handmade paper. Four awards of merit were awarded to Eddee Daniel, Anne Jost, Nancy Lamers, and Vito Valenti.

Ralph Russo had these words to say about Visual Mix: “It was a great pleasure to serve as a juror for Visual Mix: WP&S Southeast Chapter Juried Exhibition. I was very pleased by the breath and consistent high quality of the work. Determining which pieces belonged and which did not was a stiff challenge. I hope you the viewer are as pleased as I am with the diversity of concepts, strong craft and perhaps most important, skillful execution of each idea. Each of these artists demonstrate a certainty to an idea that when combined with creative uses of media, strong design and practiced execution produce an exhibition that is both lively, challenging and yet very accessible. Congratulations to each of these artists and to WP&S Southeast Chapter!”

Visual Mix is a show that deserves attention and attendance. The opening brought together an exciting mixture of not only WP&S members, but students, teachers, art lovers and a few notable gallery owners. The show runs until February 26, so plan to escape the cold Wisconsin winter for a few hours by stepping into a magical world of color and imagination at the Union Art Gallery.

Lee Grantham's first place award pieces Opening Reception Febuary 6 Musicians at the reception for Visual Mix Lee Grantham accepting first place award from WP&S SE Chapter Chair Nancy Lamers. Award winning sculpture by Tom Eddington
Carved and painted screen by Ines Smrz. Hanging Visual Mix
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