2020 PWCS Members Show (Online)

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Torphy Levitt
Blanche Color Symphony on the Yellow Breeches
9 x 12
Soft pastel on Uart paper
For Sale, $180

Juror: Susan Avis Murphy

Title: Hong Kong Blur
Material: Watercolor on Arches 140 lb. cold press Size: 18x13

Not for sale

Read her statement

List of Award Winners

Purchase Artwork

Award Winners

Award Amount Artist Painting Medium

1st Place $ 500 Lana Privitera The Rainbow Cups Watercolor on paper

2nd Place $ 300 Fred Danziger Night Garden Gouache

3rd Place $ 200 Eve Miller Two Kayaks Soft Pastels on Uart

Award of Merit $ 100 Laurin McCracken Jars on Quilt Watercolor on paper

Award of Merit $ 100 Joanna Barnum Within/Without Watercolor on paper

Award of Merit $ 100 Cheryl Feng Portrait of a Young Boy Watercolor on paper

Award of Merit $ 100 Madeleine Kelly Mardi Gras
Soft pastel on sanded archival paper

Award of Merit $ 100 Susan Weintraub Morning Deliveries Watercolor and gouache on paper

Honorable Mention $ 50 Lois Ward Wolford Shopping Therapy Watercolor

Honorable Mention $ 50 Kathy Ruck Barn Owl in Sycamore Watercolor

Honorable Mention $ 50 Denny Bond Timeslot Watercolor

Honorable Mention $ 50 Antonio Masi Ghosts of Ellis Island
Watercolors, 300lb watercolor paper

Honorable Mention $ 50 Tim Saternow Ansonia Pharmacy, 6th Ave.
Watercolor, pencil, cold wax medium

Golden Award
Judith Hummer
Bryant Park
Watercolors, 300lb watercolor paper

Juror’s Statement for Philadelphia Watercolor Society Member’s Show 2020

This show attracts some very high quality entries, and it was a daunting task to sort them out and rank them according to my assessment of overall quality.  Judging art is always going to be subjective, and different judges are going to respond to different things. Also of course this was done on a computer and the paintings were not seen in person.  I used a desktop computer with a 38” color-calibrated monitor. In addition to the usual criteria, such as composition, technical skill, use of color and value, originality, etc., I considered the question of how challenging was the image to paint?  Did the artist fulfill his/her apparent intentions? Could the painting have been done better?

I put the “The Rainbow Cups” by Lana Privitera in First Place.  Those cups are a symphony of color and are just painted so beautifully!  The smooth, colorful glaze of the cups is captured so perfectly, you want to reach into the painting and touch them.  The painting is completely unified, while at the same time being surprisingly original.  

Second Place went to “Night Garden” by Fred Danziger.  This painting in gouache is beautifully executed and must have been very difficult to paint.  There were a number of excellent highly detailed still lifes entered in the show, and it was hard to choose which one to honor with a major award.  I chose this one because of the unusual portrayal of flowers in the dark. Fred has blended the foreground subject matter into the background, which gets less and less distinct, with consummate skill.

I chose “Two Kayaks” by Eve Miller for Third Place for several reasons.  The bold composition drew me in. Eve seems to be breaking some rules here with the three equal-sized horizontal bands, but I don’t care.  I think it works. The linear strokes of pastel layered on top of one another are luscious. I would love to see this painting in person!

The five paintings chosen for Awards of Merit are all wonderful, as are the six Honorable Mentions.  I am not ranking them in any way, because that would be very difficult! There are three excellent portraits in here.  “Within/Without” by Joanna Barnum is very original and evocative. I love the tousled hair in “Portrait of a Young Boy” by Cheryl Feng.  And the three shoppers in “Shopping Therapy” by Lois Wolford are a riot! They look so determined! There were quite a few fantastic city scenes submitted and given awards.  In particular I think the composition of “Morning Deliveries” by Susan Weintraub is wonderful. Those big heavy girders are a great foil for the small details of the cars and light effects.

Congratulations to the PWCS for another excellent show, and thank you for inviting me to be the juror!

Susan Avis Murphy, AWS NWS

Sandy Spring, MD

February 21, 2020

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