Huntsville Museum announces The Red Clay Survey with 80 Works by 61 Artists Representing 10 Southern States

The Huntsville Museum of Art presents The Red Clay Survey: 2012 Exhibition of Contemporary Southern Art, which opens to the public Sunday, May 20. The Red Clay Survey is a recurring juried exhibition open to established and emerging artists in 11 Southern states. In its eleventh presentation, the exhibit will be on view through September 16, 2012.

The artists juried into The Red Clay Survey are selected through a comprehensive two-fold process, involving an initial stage of jurying by image and a second stage of reviewing actual works. Out of 1,400 entries the Museum received, the jurors chose 80 works by 61 artists from 10 states.

The competition will feature more than $8,000 in cash awards, including Museum Purchase Awards, a Juror’s Choice Award, two Alabama Artist Awards, four Merit Awards, and a People’s Choice Award determined by Museum visitors by voting in the gallery during the run of the show.

This year’s jurors are realist artists Janet Monafo and Paul Rahilly of Boston, Mass. Monafo has earned wide respect from collectors, curators, and artists for her exquisitely rendered pastels. Currently teaching drawing at Massachusetts College of Art, she is a nationally recognized artist with a long list of accolades. In 2002 she was elected into the Pastel Society of America’s Hall of Fame, an honor also held by William Merritt Chase and Mary Cassatt.

Rahilly is a leading figure in the field of contemporary American realism. Currently an instructor in painting and drawing at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and Massachusetts College of Art, he is equally admired and collected as a painter of figures, portraits, landscapes, and still lifes.

“The Red Clay Survey provides Museum visitors with a rare opportunity to become familiar with what’s currently happening on the contemporary art scene across the South,” Peter J. Baldaia, director of Curatorial Affairs, said. “As in years past, the exhibition includes a wide range of fine art and craft media, in styles ranging from traditional to avant-garde.”

Initiated in 1988, the series “takes the pulse” of current art and intends to recognize and encourage excellence, while providing a permanent record of the development of regional art through the publication of a comprehensive exhibition catalogue.

The Museum will celebrate the opening of the exhibition with a Preview Party on Saturday, May 19, from 7 to 9 p.m. The award winners will be announced at 7:30 p.m. Attendees will have the opportunity to meet some of the Red Clay artists, hear live jazz music by The Ken Watters Group, and enjoy a reception hosted by Museum Members Charlie Bonner and Yvonne Hawkins.

The preview event is free to Museum members and participating artists. Non-members will be admitted for $25 per person. Guests are asked to call 256-535-4350 ext. 208 to RSVP.

Major support for the exhibition was provided by Regions Bank. Additional support was provided by the Alabama State Council on the Arts, Graphic Artist Betty Altherr Howard, The Huntsville Times, and The Women’s Guild of the Huntsville Museum of Art.

Red Clay award sponsors include: Alice Chang, Dorothy and Julian Davidson, Heather and Paul Dionne, Kelly and Randy Schrimsher, Anne and Ed Uher, and the Huntsville Museum of Art Docents.

The Museum is closed Mondays and some major holidays. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. with extended hours Thursdays until 8:00 p.m. and Sundays from 1 to 4 p.m.

Admission is $8 for adults; $7 for military, students, teachers, and seniors with a valid ID; and $4 for children ages 6−11. Admission for Museum members and children under 6 is free.

For more information, visit www.hsvmuseum.org or call 256-535-4350.

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