Fine art becomes part of Texas & Neighbors Exhibition

Photo: A variety of juried artwork featuring mixed media works from artists in Texas, New Mexico, Louisiana, Arkansas and Oklahoma fills the 30th Annual Texas & Neighbors Exhibition, which is open, admission free, in the Irving Arts Center until May 16. /Photo by John Starkey

Art lovers converged on the Irving Arts Center to enjoy the 30th Texas &Neighbor’s Regional arts reception and awards ceremony, sample food and listen to the gentle sounds of harp strings. This annual event was presented by the Irving Arts Association on April 19.

Out of more than 500 entries, 69 were selected to be part of the show by Leeann Stone, the 2015 juror.

“When I judge a show, I first look for dexterity of hand and discernment of eye, both of which are necessary to achieve a well-rendered subject,” Stone said.

Presenting the ribbon awards was Mark Thompson, this year’s show chairman.

“It is truly an honor to have been involved with the 30th annual Texas & Neighbors Regional Art Exhibition,” Thompson said. “This is my first year with the exhibit, and I don’t think I fully understood just how important this show is until I saw the art come in on the Saturday afternoon in March when we received it all. One by one I saw the pieces come in, and I was amazed at how spectacular each one looked.”

The 69 selected pieces on display were surrounded by beautiful floral arrangements created by The Chocolate Rose to complement the hanging art. Twenty-two works of art received awards for 1st, 2nd and 3rd places as well as honorable mentions in the mediums of acrylic, water media, mixed media, drawing, and oil.

Three additional awards were presented. The Best of Show was awarded to Karlyn Holloway for ‘The hands of time.’ Steve Danner’s ‘Won’t get fooled again’ won the Chairman’s Choice award. The Irving Arts Center’s Award of Excellence was won by Linda Lucas Hardy for ‘The Fragile Little Worlds Between the Shadows and the Light.’

At the end of the award ceremony, Mark Thompson announced the recipient of the 2015 Irving Art Association scholarship, which was presented to Stacy Xilom, a current MacArthur High School student who plans to use the scholarship to pursue a degree in the arts.