An award for “Essence of the Sea” at the Tempe Center for the Arts


Above Photo Credits: International Guild of Realism

This story about the most recent International Guild Of Realism's Annual Exhibition was featured in the October 2013 issue of Southwest Art magazine:

After a century of artists bucking tradition and pushing art into more abstract and cerebral realms, realism as an art form is back, making a steady return to the ranks of not only accepted but highly sought-after genres. Nowhere is this more apparent than at the growing annual juried show of the International Guild of Realism. Opening on Saturday, October 5, the show takes place at the Tempe Center for the Arts. It features 107 paintings by 93 guild members from seven different countries, including Belgium, Iceland, China, and Canada. “We have an amazing array of realism,” says Don Clapper, a founding member of the guild. “We have a loose definition of realism, from works closer to impressionism all the way up to trompe l’oeil and photorealism.” This year’s participating artists are sure to impress, including Duffy Sheridan, Lee Alban, Ed Copley, Aaron Brent Harker, Randy Ford, Camille Engel, and Craig Srebnik.

A ticketed VIP opening party and awards ceremony kicks off show events on Friday night, October 4. The show then opens to the public on October 5 with a public artists’ reception that evening. “Every show has gotten bigger and better,” Clapper says. “Now we’re really focusing on making the opening a three-day weekend of fun activities,” which includes seminars for artists and painting demonstrations.

Guild membership is determined by jury only. “All members must go through a rigorous jury process,” Clapper says. “We look for quality, we look for creativity. We also like a combination of the old, traditional, Renaissance realism with newer forms of modern-day realism that are kind of edgy.”

Pamela Carroll, who presents two pieces at this year’s show, has participated in the show for three years. “I’ve belonged [to the guild] for six or seven years,” she says. “They are the nicest group of people. The artists work so hard; they are more into the art than themselves.” With this show, Carroll says, “The bar has been raised. There are so many incredible painters in the guild now. Every year the show has gotten better and better. Collectors will not be disappointed.” —Laura Rintala - Southwest Art magazine

My two paintings "Essence of the Sea" and "Recipe for a Beautiful Day" can be seen in the middle left and left bottom of the photo. Photo Credit: Camille Engle

Award Winners:

Best of Show  -  Mary Jane Q. Cross  -  “Gently Letting Go”

Jerry’s Artarama Pioneer in Realism  -  Duffy Sheridan  -  “Young Girl with Red Roses”

American Art Collector’s Editor’s Choice  -  Grace Kim  -  “Dragon Fruits”

Best of the West  -  Karen Noles  -  “Denika

Best of Landscape  -  R. Geoffrey Blackburn  -  “Red Canyon, Lander”

Best of Figurative  -  Ardith Starostka  -  “Reverie of Suspended Thought”

Best of Floral  -  Jane Jones  -  “Ruffled Jewels”

Artist’s Choice  -  Loretta Fasan  -  “The Flame”

Best of Still Life  -  Aaron Brent Harker  -  “Drifter”

Best Drawing  -  Tanja Gant  -  “Girl without an Earring”

Best Tromp l’Oeil  -  George Gonzalez  -  “Fishing with Rockwell”

Ganem Fine Jewelry Creative Achievement  -  Beth Sistrunk  -  “Essence of the Sea”

Best Wildlife  -  Camille Engel  -  “Morning Glory”

Bill and Susan Rowett Collector’s Choice -  William Albanese Sr.  -  “The Blue Granite Dipper”


To watch a video documenting the exhibition click on the following link:

Congratulations to everyone!