The editors of Southwest Art spent many hours huddled around the computer, judging the nearly 3,000 entries in our second annual 21 Over 31 emerging artists competition. We had to make hard decisions to choose the final prize winners, and we’d like you to meet some of the artists whose entries were finalists in this year’s competition.
To see all 50 finalists, please scroll to the end of this page.
Patricia Canney spends most of her time painting in her studio in an historic warehouse building in Minneapolis, MN. Her most recent paintings are of dresses themselves, without the figure. “It’s been fascinating for me to paint dresses because they are sort of a portrait, but without the person,” she says. Cecy Turner paints in a variety of mediums, including acrylic, oil, and watercolor. She works to capture the effect of light and shadow in her paintings.
Colorado artist Deb Kaylor believes she was born with the gift of creating art. Her subjects of choice include animals, figures in cafés, cityscapes, and European scenes. Eileen Sorg’s realistic paintings of birds perched on different objects attract the viewer’s eye. She uses a strong sense of value and color in her work and lives in Kingston, WA.
Keiko Tanabe paints landscapes with watercolors. She is originally from Japan and has always loved art. Largely self-taught, Tanabe made the leap into becoming a full-time artist five years ago. SM Botstein calls herself a “lifelong student of art.” She has enjoyed drawing and painting in pastel and oil throughout her life. Figures, landscapes, and flora are among the subjects she paints.
Susan McGee enjoys painting subjects inspired by a paradox—such as her painting of a little girl in a fancy dress with earrings, squatting down on the sidewalk with a frown on her face. In addition to painting figures, she also paints landscapes and interior scenes. Pastel artist Sue Gombus is passionate about the conservation of animals. Her artwork reflects her love of wildlife, depicting wild animals in their natural environments. Gombus has traveled all over the world to study and paint, including a trip to East Africa.
Michele Usibelli works in oil in a representational style. She uses loose brush strokes in her paintings of landscapes, portraits, still lifes, and figures. In her spare time, she enjoys teaching and conducting workshops. Will Maller’s work ranges from coastal scenes in California to boatyards to farm scenes. He recently won the grand prize purchase award at this year’s Paint the Parks competition.
Ora Sorensen paints with bright colors in an “exaggerated realistic” style. Her oil paintings depict fruit in bowls and flowers in vases. Sarah Blumenschein is also drawn to painting still lifes, but her choice of medium is pastel. One of her favorite subjects to paint is glass.
Featured in November 2010