SWGA regional art show opens

Staff Reports

ALBANY — The 14th annual Southwest Georgia Regional Fine Art Exhibit and Sale opens Friday at the Thronateeska Science Museum following an opening reception Thursday evening.

Carol Hetzler, executive director of the Albany Area Arts Council, said the juried show features 125 pieces produced by 66 artists. The artwork is in three categories: painting, photography and sculpture.

Because of the volume of artwork, Hetzler said, the show is being exhibited at the Thronateeska Science Museum, 100 W. Roosevelt Ave. The opening reception is 5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m. Thursday, with the show opening Friday and continuing through June 29. Admission is free and the exhibit hours are ....

The opening reception will include an awards presentation at 6:45 p.m. First-, second- and third-place winners and honorable mention will be announced in each category — painting, photography and sculpture. Hetzler said winning artists will each receive a ribbon and a monetary award for placing.

Also to be announced Thursday will be the judges’ selected top works for the July “Winner’s Circle” exhibit at the Carnegie Library, home of the Albany Arts Council, 215 N. Jackson St.

Judges for the show are:

— PAINTING: Jane Simpson, art director for the Colquitt County Arts Center and a professional painter. She attended Georgia Southern University, Atlanta College of Art and graduated from Florida State University with a BFA in fine arts studio painting. She has been with the Colquitt Arts Center since 1982, serving as an instructor, executive director and presently visual arts director. Simpson has served as a site reviewer for the Georgia Council for the Arts, has been a board member for the Southeastern Museum Conference, liaison for the Southeastern Museum Directors, served as a board member for the Georgia Association of Museums & Galleries. Currently a consultant for the Georgia Council of the Arts in Art Education. She is a professional painter with exhibitions in various galleries and homes throughout the United States.

— PHOTOGRAPHY: Todd Stone, a local professional photographer. A former photojournalist with The Albany Herald and now a long-time commercial freelance photographer, Stone has accumulated a long list of accolades, most recently voted “Best of the Best” photographer in the Albany Herald’s Readers’ Choice Awards. His work has appeared in numerous publications, including Newsweek, Time, USA Today and Southwest Georgia Living magazine. He was also the on-set photographer for Sherwood Pictures’ two most recent films, “Fireproof” and “Courageous.” He and Cindy, his wife of 30 years, have two grown children.

— SCULPTURE: Devan Cole, a glass-blowing artist and instructor at Georgia Southwestern State University in Americus. He attended Rochester Institute of Technology for Glass Sculpture, where he was able to work with renowned sculptors and glass artists. Since receiving a bachelor of fine arts in glass in 2009, he has worked with some of the world’s leading artists and glassblowers creating exquisite pieces showing in solo and group exhibitions. Devan has been awarded many educational scholarships, internships, and artist residencies including those at Urban Glass, Pittsburgh Glass Center, Corning Museum of Glass, Simon Pearce, and Salem Art Works. Devan is currently at Georgia Southwestern State University teaching and creating his next series of glass sculpture.