March Masters opened last night at the Art League of Fort Myers. Judged by artist and Public Art Committee member David Meo, the exhibition includes two-dimensional works in oil, acrylic, watercolor, pastel, collage, original prints (etchings, lithographs and wood block) and fiber art produced by Art League members. In the words of Meo, "lively gestural brushwork and arresting color composition seem to be the hallmarks of this collection."
Meo knows art from both sides of the easel. He is an artist, sculptor and set designer. He's also an arts educator and one of nine members of the Fort Myers Public Art Committee charged with responsibility for evaluating proposals and awarding commissions for new public artworks being installed within the city limits.
"Both figurative and abstract works balance and counterpoint well," Meo observes about the 30 works submitted by Art League members for March Masters. And the painting which won Meo's heart was Gift, a colorful pink and purple floral still life by Barbara Wilson, which took Best of Show. "Lively gestural brushwork," Meo noted of the impressionist piece. "Well composed and controlled, but loose and broad palette."
Gretchen Johns earned second place with her entry, Sea Life, a watercolor on Yupo. "Deft and masterful control of media," Meo says of the rendering. He was also impressed by the transparent glazes she layered onto the balanced, suggestive abstract.
Last month's winner, Tracy Owen Cullimore, received third place honors from Meo for her impressionist acrylic, Attitude is Everything. Cullimore impressed Meo not only with her open, impassioned brushwork that matches the subject's carefree mood, but by her surprising color palette as well.
Meo also handed out three merit awards, to Joseph King for Scape, Susan Mills for Shelf It and Barbara Chloe Murdoch for In Flight. KiKi Brewsaugh received an Honorable Mention for her acrylic, Colorful Eskie, as did Susanne Brown for Gabriella and Portia Wright for Music Walk.
March Masters will remain on exhibit through March 29, 2013.
The Art League of Fort Myers has been supporting the arts in Lee County for more than 55 years, and has received a grant from the City of Fort Myers to help support its mission. For more information about the exhibit or the League, please visit www.artleagueoffortmyers.org or call 239-275-3970.