ALL ALASKA Juried Art Exhibition XXVIII

Anchorage Museum of History and Art   January 16th through February 20, 2000

Rescue Dog by Kay Marshall, acrylic on canvas

JUROR’S CHOICE AWARD: Rescue Dog  by Kay Marshall, acrylic on canvas

"It is the magic of great art to seem instantaneous and inevitable ... In many of these works, the artists have achieved the best of their craft, that is, to create textures, compositions, and color palettes that are on the one hand transparent vehicles for the subject of the work and simultaneously exquisitely sensual in and of themselves.  Look at the improbably colored marks that define the flowing water in Kay Marshall's Rescue Dog ... In this work and others, the artist’s craft is in perfect harmony with their expressive intent. The result is  works that are alive in every inch of their surface."  Juror Lawrence Rinder

Lawrence Rinder is Director of the Institute for Exhibitions and Public Programming at the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland and San Francisco, California. He has organized more than fifty exhibitions and written a number of   publications on contemporary art. He was one of five jurists involved in selecting artists to participate in the Whitney Biennial 2000 in New York City.

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The Anchorage Museum of History and Art is located at 121 West Seventh Avenue in Anchorage, Alaska. The All Alaska Juried Art Exhibition XXVIII was administered locally by Anchorage Museum Curator of Exhibits Dave Nicholls and coordinated by Kathy Vail-Roche under the direction of Pat Wolfe.

Artists given special attention by awards and honorable mentions include Kay Marshall, Hiedi Hahn, Steve Gordon, Marionette Donnell Stock, Evon Zerbetz, Beverly Cover, Garry Mealor, and Joyce Reynolds.

One hundred and seventy-seven artists from 30 Alaskan communities submitted nearly 600 entries from which 78 works by 63 artists were selected.

amhawyne.jpg (20039 bytes)   Wait/Weight by Sheila Wyne

This year's show was distinguished by the absence of sculptures with the exception of Wait/Weight by Sheila Wyne, an Alaskan artist familiar to New York and San Francisco audiences. Suspended from the ceiling, these factory windows had images screened on them. Ricker’s Martyr’s Dream is center background and Gordon’s Intertidal Pools and  Birch Cathedral at the outsides of the photo above. I was honored to have Martyr's Dream included in this Biennial. This painting has nothing to do with Alaska, but is a confrontation of the Muslim notion of a paradaisical reward for terroristic acts that includes 40 figures and a mule.

 Intertidal Pools, Ketchikan, by Steve Gordon of Anchorage, oil on canvas  Intertidal Pools, Ketchikan (Steve Gordon)

Gordon is one of Alaska’s most enthusiastically collected landscape painters. His paintings showcase his ability to use confident touches of the fully laden brush to create the illusion of rock, water, and vegetation. His paintings are remarkable for his courageous use of perspective and rendering to compact the gigantic vistas of Alaska into necessarily limited pictorial space without sacrificing grandeur. The brilliance and liveliness of his paint applications are not done justice by reproduction but are very present in the large scale originals.



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Juror Rinder also included three baskets by various artists, apparently unaware that there is a separate crafts biennial hosted by the museum.

  Girl with Ball by Lezli Morgan of Ketchikan, oil on masoniteGirl with Ball by Leslie Morgan   

Morgan’ Girl with Ball was framed with painted and shaped masonite to represent the night sky above the town of Ketchikan below, local pick-up trucks in front of the village store. This painting was technically excellent, captivating and mysterious. The close cropped protagonist is wearing Christmas tree lights and holding a bowling ball.

amhamlor.jpg (15996 bytes) Self-Portrait 1999 by Gary Mealor

Mealor’s Self-Portrait 1999 evokes a politically committed partisan alone apparently at an upper level of the Fifth Avenue parking garage in Anchorage looking east toward the Chugach mountains..

amhadbsn.jpg (13191 bytes)  Chakra Spectrum by Shala Dobson

Dobson’s seven part maquette for an installation piece at the Carr-Gottstein Gallery at APU had a commanding presence on the wall it occupied. Chakra Spectrum is simple in appearance but saturated with concept.  .

amhaquam.jpg (20878 bytes)  Dance to the Music of the Spheres by Carole Quam

Quam’s imagination is given free rein in this fun canvas.

amhawngr.jpg (15675 bytes)  I Drink from the Toilet at Night by Gary Winegar

People’s choice winner of the title fight, Winegar’s beagle portrait achieves startling verisimilitude with outlandish colors. Who that loves dogs couldn't forgive this winsome subject?

The Anchorage Museum of History and Art is located at 121 West Seventh Avenue in Anchorage. Portions of this show have been scheduled to travel to the Fairbanks Art Association Gallery August 14-August 27, the Kenai Visitor and Cultural Center September 14 - October 14, and  the Alaska State Museum in Juneau November 17 - January 13, 2001 on a tour that may include the world's northernmost gallery in Barrow and Unalaska as well.  Visitors to Alaska are encouraged to learn more about the vital contemporary Alaskan art scene in all of these communities. 

To read a review by John T Spike for   See how art historian and international critic and curator John T Spike reviewed this exhibit.

2/16/00  "Alaska artists choose their own way --- What’s missing is the brightness of new trends and media commonly found in modern American art. ... Kay Marshall’s Rescue Dog was awarded best in show. Loose brush strokes reveal a life-size image of a faithful companion pulling a limp human figure from churning water.... Perhaps it is the large size of the painting that helped win its award." --- Mikki Smith, Anchorage Daily News Wednesday FOOD section reviewing AK XXVIII: