Monday, October 12, 2009
Wasted Words: War wins at the fair
(Above: Wasted Words: War. First Place in Open Media at the South Carolina State Fair Fine Arts Exhibition. Click on image to enlarge.)
As a professional artist, I have mixed up and totally conflicted emotions about entering the state fair. Many laugh, saying that state fairs aren't the "right" sort of venue for quality work. I've been advised not to include any mention of a state fair prize on my resume. Embarrassingly, I admit to heeding this advice; but, I LOVE STATE FAIRS!
My creative journey started at the Ohio State Fair years ago....while browsing through the aisles in the arts and crafts building....innocently saying, "Oh, I could do that....and I could stitch this"....and my husband Steve wisely commenting, "Put your money where your mouth is!" The Ohio State Fair was the first event into which I ever submitted anything. It was important. It was thrilling. It opened my eyes to the possibilities of needle and thread.
Once we moved to South Carolina, I attended the fair here...and entered cross stitch and needlepoint...and won awards...and finally got up the courage to try "fine art" as an "amateur"...and then, about eight years ago...I entered as a "professional". I've won several awards since then, including another first place in my division. Truly, state fairs are significant to my development as a working artist.
Last night Steve and I went to the opening reception. Wasted Words: War won first place in my division...open media. This really is a BIG DEAL....and comes with a $500 check! In fact, the South Carolina State Fair is the largest art event in the entire state and has a prize fund of $29,750. Best of Show (Professional) is $6,500. Best of Show (Amateur) is $2,250....which is more than many regional exhibits have for a total prize package. The complete list of winners is HERE! The juror was from out-of-state....other thing that many other juried events don't have! (Her name is Lynne Kroll; her website is HERE!)
It was a great evening. I am very, very happy to be a winner. I'm not going to put it on my resume and I feel guilty about this. So....how do others feel about State Fairs?
Posted by Susan Lenz at 10:16 AM