The Ironstone Winery near the gold rush town of Murphys in the California foothills held its 16th annual "Spring Obsession" art show reception last Saturday. As I mentioned in earlier posts, I spent several days painting in Murphys last year with a Howard Rees workshop group. ( http://www.howardreesartist.com/ ) On one of the days, we visited the Ironstone Winery to paint on their beautiful grounds. I was not aware of the art show at that time; however, this year my artist friend Vickie Chew who lives in the area gave me the details and, at the last possible moment, I decided to enter. ( http://vickiechew.com/ ) I entered five paintings into the juried show and four were accepted, including one of my paintings of a small miner's cabin on the Ironstone grounds done during the previous year's visit.
On Saturday night I was honored to receive a merit award for the miner's cabin plein air painting. The judges for the show were Kathleen Dumphy, Craig Nelson, and Anamarie Nelson. Kathleen is a nationally known plein air artist, Craig Nelson is a well known oil painter (I have two of his dvds) and Annamarie Nelson is a faculty member of the Academy of Art University in San Francisco (as is Craig Nelson). Certainly a very distinguished panel. There were three blue ribbons and three merit awards given in the open competition. One merit award was awarded by each of the judges individually. It was an honor to have Kathleen select my painting.
Of the four paintings I had in the show, this was probably the last one I would have expected to be given an award. But I do remember the beautiful day painting at Ironstone Winery with my friends, and that in itself was a very special "prize".
My thanks to Ironstone Winery for putting on this show. If you are ever in Murphys (which is well worth the visit) be sure to visit Ironstone. It's very impressive.
PS: Thanks to Ted Smith, another gold rush country artist, who framed this painting for me at literally the last minute. I picked it up from Ted on the way to Ironstone! ( You can find Ted at Gallery 10 in Sutter Creek http://www.gallery10suttercreek.com/ )