Abstract artists from Canada, Macedonia, USA, China and Russia get top honors in Category 6 of the 2017 AMERICAN ART AWARDS. Of the 50 categories, this one had the most submissions. Because of the low-scoring system (galleries and museums are asked to score each piece only 0 to 3 points) many art pieces get the same amount of votes and therefore tie, which is a plus because that means more artists win awards - and validation.
This year the American Art Awards (www.AmericanArtAwards.com), juried by the 25 Best Galleries & Museums In America (listed below), had online art images in 50 CATEGORIES submitted from artists in 56 COUNTRIES: Albania, Argentina, Australia, Belarus, Brazil, Canada, China, Denmark, Egypt, England, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Malaysia, Mexico, Myanmar, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Pakistan, Philippines, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, South Africa, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, UK, Ukraine, USA, Uzbekistan, Vietnam and Wales.
The 1st Place to 6th Place winners in all 50 categories will be revealed in the news about a category a day - stretching into November, making this one of the longest winner announcements of any art competition in the world.
---------------------------------------------------------ABOUT 1ST PLACE WINNER NICOLETTA BAUMEISTER BFA, AFCA
From my early career constructing high realism paintings, I suspected that a human being can never be objective and that reality does not exist in a fixed, objective form. At twenty-one, I rejected the artistic stratagem of realism as an objective style in opposition to ‘subjective’ idioms such as expressionism or conceptualism. My premise was that all creative work was subjective.
From 1982 onward my work investigated the physical components of the perceptual pathway; apprehension of phenomena by the senses, reception and translation by the brain. Following phases, explored the processes of the brain from translating, ordering and sorting as it makes meaning from sensory inputs. This exploration included consideration of time, environment, culture, experience, language and memory. Ongoing questions were, ‘How do we perceive reality? What happens in our brain to construct and/or distort our perception? Why do we think about reality the way we do?
By 1990 I was working firmly under the premise that the brain constructs reality; that the distinction between objective and subjective is unstable, unreal and that the true nature of reality is in flux, not fixed. I found corroboration in other areas of research, notably in sociology, physics and mathematics. By 2000, the work became an exploration of dynamics, based on the premise that the true nature of reality is the causality between things rather than the identities of single things.
To express these ideas I turned to an abstract style and began simply. The paintings were restricted to two dimensional quadrangles inside a monochrome space and required that I neither change size, shape, colour or tone once a unit had been painted. These restrictions resulted in a style of painting that demanded that the dynamics created between the space and each subsequent element added, be of primary consideration. The paintings that result are a record/product of the dynamics created by the process.
In the last fifteen years a distinct visual language has evolved that fall into a variety of themes. Themes tend to be binary and include; perception/memory, ideas/habit, culture/individual, time/pattern system/decay, order/chaos. I am vitally interested in the what, why, where, how and when of human perception. How do we know what we know, how do we assess what is true and most fundamentally, how do we know who we are?
---------------------------------------------------------ABOUT 1ST PLACE WINNER DIVNA PESIC GROZDANOV:
Divna Pesic Grozdanov was born on 22nd September 1979 in Kavadarci, Republic of Macedonia. She graduated from the Faculty of Philology in Skopje, Department of Macedonian and South-Slavonic Languages with American Studies. Later she finished Master of Economy science in Management and Banking. Divna Pesic Grozdanov has been a professional sportsman for more then 20 years. She has been the best shooter off all times in the Republic of Macedonia in the discipline of small calibre rifle and air-rifle, holding 37 state records in both female and male competitions. So far she has twice become a champion of the Balkans and twice at Olympic Games (Sydney, Australia, 2000, and Athens, Greece, 2004). She has been ranked among the top competitors in many European and World competitions.
She started her career as a painter when she was only 13 (oil on canvas) and so far has had 20 mayor exhibitions at home and abroad; Skopje, New York, Miami, Washington, Paris, Dusseldorf, Ljubljana, Istanbul. (http://www.divnapesic.com)
She was elected as second place from “33 EMERGING CREATIVE MINDS YOU NEED TO KNOW FOR 2011” by Sofi Art magazine, USA (www.SOFImag.com). One of her paintings, Protecting my Pride, it's owned by her Majesty the Queen Elizabeth at Beckingham Palace.
Divna Pesic's art works were shown on the biggest billboard in Manhattan, NYC, as a selected artist from around the world by See.Me Take Times Square 2014.
She is married and has two sons.
Below are the 25 BEST GALLERIES AND MUSEUMS IN AMERICA who agreed to vote on the 2017 American Art Awards:
BEST IN PENNSYLVANIA — JAMES A. MICHENER ART MUSEUM. “... 40,000 sq. ft.... world-class group of paintings... permanent collection of more than 2,800 objects... accredited world-class facility... diverse program of educational activities... more than 135,000 annual visitors...” http://www.michenerartmuseum.org/
BEST IN LOUISIANA — NEWCOMB ART MUSEUM. “... legacy of education, social enterprise, and artistic experience. Presenting inspirin exhibitions and programs that engage communities... founded in 1886... recognizes the contributions of women to the fields of art and design....” http://newcombartmuseum.tulane.edu/
BEST IN ILLINOIS — HILLIGOSS GALLERIES. “Chicago’s Premier Art Gallery for 20+ years. The two-story 8,500 sq. ft. gallery is the epitome of a well-oiled machine... perfect marriage of artist, collector and setting... original paintings by the world’s finest living artists, as well as fine prints by historic and 20th century masters.”http://www.hilligossgalleriesil.com/
BEST IN NEVADA — THE METROPOLITAN GALLERY OF LAS VEGAS ART MUSEUM. “... over 20,000 sq. ft.... intellectual excellence and leadership... dedicated to raising awareness... promotes an understanding and appreciation of art by making accessible to the public fine art exhibitions, educational programs, and cultural events... local, regional and international artists... “ http://mglv.org/
BEST IN KENTUCKY — E&S GALLERY. “... professionalism, reputation, gallery space, exhibitions, artist roster and clientele... 11,000 sq. ft. gallery, custom framing and art publishing... African American art with an unmatched selection of artists, medium, subject matter, and genres. ... “ http://www.eandsgallery.com/
BEST IN MISSISSIPPI — OHR-O’KEEFE ART MUSEUM. “...just as Ohr (1857-1918) rose from devastating personal and professional loss to create an extraordinary body of work, so too the Ohr-O’Keefe has risen from Hurricane Katrina’s destruction... diverse cultural heritage of the Mississippi Gulf Coast... compelling exhibitions and educational experiences......” http://georgeohr.org/
BEST IN NEBRASKA — KIECHEL FINE ART. “...few have the roster and esteem as Keichel... discerning eye... three story four gallery showplace... many of the top Midwestern Contemporary artists... “ http://www.kiechelart.com/
BEST IN COLORADO — COLORADO SPRINGS FINE ARTS CENTER. “132,000 sq. ft... one of the only multi-discipline arts institutions... For nearly 100 years, the top cultural attraction of the Pikes Peak region... world’s finest art... extraordinary visceral experiences...” http://www.csfineartscenter.org/
BEST IN SOUTH DAKOTA — SOUTH DAKOTA ART MUSEUM. “Since 1970... artistic legacy of South Dakota in all its diversity. Harvey Dunn, Native American art, Marghab Linens... 7,000 objects in its collection...”http://www.sdstate.edu/south-dakota-art-museum/
BEST IN SOUTH CAROLINA — MARY MARTIN GALLERY OF FINE ART. “... excellence and steady expansion... museum quality art including bronze and stone sculptures, original oil and acrylic paintings, extraordinary watercolors... number one tourist destination in America... on par with Beverly Hill’s Rodeo Drive and NY’s Fifth Avenue...”http://www.marymartinart.com/
BEST IN UTAH — MEYER GALLERY. “... over 50 years, a contemporary art icon in Utah. The building (former First National Bank of Utah) is listed with the National Register of Historic Places and on the Park City Museum’s Historic district tour. Featuring both representational and abstract works... “ https://www.meyergallery.com/
BEST IN NEW MEXICO — BLUE RAIN GALLERY. “...Santa Fe’s exceptional exhibitor of all factions of art... pieces from noted glass artisans to bronze sculptures and wood sculptures to two-dimensional works, artisans contribute elegant to elemental, neo-traditional to transcendental, neo-tribal to contemporary Native American... “ http://blueraingallery.com/
BEST IN MISSOURI — UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI MUSEUM OF ART AND ARCHAEOLOGY. “...Stunning collections across a wide range of cultures... Greek, Roman, Near Eastern art works, ancient Egypt, Byzantium, Asian, African, Ancient Americas, and Oceanic cultures... important collections in European and American art from the fifteenth century to the present... “ https://maa.missouri.edu/
BEST IN CALIFORNIA — CODA GALLERY. “A Palm Dessert landmark for thirty years, this contemporary El Paseo gallery has a vast collection of paintings, photography, sculpture, glass, and ceramic works by a wide range of established, mid-career, and emerging artists...” http://www.codagallery.com/
BEST IN OREGON — ROGER YOST GALLERY. “Located in a 1927 art deco tower in the heart of Downtown Salem, Oregon’s capital city... more than 7500 sq. ft.. of exhibit space featuring paintings and sculpture from Lithuania, The Czech Republic, Vietnam, France, Germany, Argentina, Russia, Spain, UK, Budapest and Hollywood. A second location coastal version in Newport...” http://www.rogeryostgallery.com/
BEST IN ARIZONA — BENTLEY GALLERY. “For 30+ years, Bentley Gallery in Phoenix has been synonymous with contemporary painting and sculpture in the Southwestern U.S.... mid-career and museum-collected artists from the states and Europe, as well as ancient art and artifacts... Chinese bi and cong from the Neolithic period co-exist seamlessly with contemporary works...” http://www.bentleygallery.com/
BEST IN MAINE — PORTLAND MUSEUM OF ART. “Cultural heart of Portland... significant holdings of American, European, and contemporary art, as well as iconic works from Maine... a steadfast commitment to their community and region... their high level of attention to the complexity of art and history exemplifies respect for artwork and art makers...”http://www.portlandmuseum.org/
BEST IN CONNECTICUT — BRUCE MUSEUM. “113 years... high on a hill overlooking Greenwich Harbor... nearly 15,000 objects: paintings, sculpture, drawings, prints, photographs, multimedia compositions... accreditation from the American Association of Museums, an honor granted to fewer than 5% of all museums. Voted the best museum in Fairfield County... “ https://brucemuseum.org/
BEST IN FLORIDA — ART FUSION GALLERIES. “8,000 sq. ft.... in the heart of Miami’s Wynwood Art District... preeminent gallery in Miami for integrating the best of Emerging to Mid-Career Contemporary artists... represents over 1,000... “ http://www.artfusiongalleries.com/
BEST IN INDIANA — HAAN MANSION MUSEUM OF INDIANA ART. “Holds the most extensive Indiana art collection in the US, including paintings from the Hoosier Group and Brown County Art Colony. Specializing in major oils, over 100 artists are represented. Haan is a true find; a rare hospitable time-capsule cradling a precious past.”http://haanmuseum.org/
BEST IN VIRGINIA — WILLIAMSBURG ART GALLERY. “Located on Merchants Square along Duke of Gloucester Street in beautiful downtown Williamsburg, Virginia... Historic Triangle... a natural and inspiring home for art, dedicated to showcasing the beauty of the region as depicted by local as well as international artists, including exceptional work of Russian modern masters... a crossroads for art.” http://www.wmbgartgallery.com/
BEST IN GEORGIA — HATHAWAY CONTEMPORARY GALLERY. “A premier contemporary art gallery located on the Westside of Atlanta. They give space to the cutting-edge artists of today to express creative voice and explore societal issues... committed to building a supportive, sustaining community for the arts.” http://www.hathawaygallery.com/
BEST IN MONTANA — DANA GALLERY. “4000 sq. ft. of space, making it the largest contemporary art gallery in Montana. Excellent 20+ year reputation. They represent Montana and regional painters many of whom are internationally recognized...” http://danagallery.com/
BEST IN NEW JERSEY — EVALYN DUNN GALLERY. “It is very rare to find a gallery so successful that it is approaching it’s 60th year... also features the finest 20th Century American and European art...” http://www.evalyndunnsgallery.com/
BEST IN HAWAII — LIK LAHAINA, LIK WAIKIKI. “Peter Lik has 12 exceptional gallery locations and is the most successful photographer in the world... sold upwards of $500 million of artwork... The 2014 sale of his B&W photo titled “Phantom” for $6,500,000.00 is the highest sum ever paid in its genre. Lik’s works make up four of the top 20 most expensive photographs ever sold.” http://www.lik.com/