Women Artists Art Exhibition Winning Artists

The Women Artists Art Exhibition - Fusion Art's fifth quarterly group exhibition - awarded three Best in Show and twenty six Honorable Mention winners. Below are the biographies and/or artist's statements along with the artist's websites or emails.

Please visit the Women Artists exhibition page and contact the artists directly for purchase inquiries or to see more of their work.

Congratulations again to all the winners and thank you for sharing your talent with us.


Best in Show (Traditional)
Carina Jimenez

Carina Jimenez grew up in Lancaster, California and moved to Columbia, Missouri in 2013- where she graduated from the University of Missouri with a Bachelor in Fine Art, and where her practice is based. Carina Jimenez recently concluded Resident Art’s Emerging Artist Residency with a solo exhibition of her oil painting series Imposition. She was also chosen for the Grand Prize Award in the University of Missouri’s 2017 Visual Art and Design Showcase; with the funds from the Grand Prize Award, she attended the Florence Academy of Art’s Copying the Classical Portrait Workshop in Florence, Italy.

Carina’s oil paintings acknowledge the existence of machismo within the Mexican community and identify Roman Catholicism as the probable source. During the time of Columbus, the Spanish sought to conquer Mexico; to control and colonize the land. They began by converting the natives into Roman Catholics. The Colonization of native religions sought to build the Catholic missionaries on top of existing sacred grounds to ease the transition from the previous religion into the new. The Catholics produced an image of a European Jesus and ultimately used it to create a brand "logo" for their religion in the new world.

Carina imposes her visage on replicas of renaissance paintings and subverts the process of the conversion of her ancestors by replacing her (female) identity in a position of authority as the subject, in reclamation of this authority. By using her face exclusively, she highlights this reclaiming and denies the androcentric brand imposed by her ancestors’ colonizers.

Please visit Carina's website if you are interested in purchasing this award winning piece or to see more of her work.


Best in Show
(Digital & Photography)
Sheri Emerson

Sheri has been a photographer her entire life, from a child snapping pictures with her 110 camera, to her first SLR, and finally into the digital world. She also has been an artist her entire life, winning her first art competition at the grand old age of five. In the past few years, she has intensively studied both Photoshop and Lightroom to learn how to enhance her photography and turn it into digital art. In the past year, she has been published in “Living the Photo Artistic Life” eleven times, Readers Digest “Our Canada” magazine, “Photoshop Creative UK” magazine three times, “Conceptual Images” magazine twice, “Fine Eye Magazine” for fine art photography three times, and “A5 Magazine.”

She received the “Best in Show” award for “All Weather of the Seasons” and the “Judges Choice” award for “All Animals” in Contemporary Art Gallery Online competitions, placed second in the SINWP “Creatures Great and Small” competition, and has been recognized for her work in ShiftArt.com challenges as well as winning numerous Facebook “Photo of the Day” challenges. She is also a three-time top ten overall winner in the Light, Space and Time competitions and has received several honorable mentions.

Her work has been shown at the Pennsylvania Center for Photography and Heaven Art Gallery in Scottsdale, and will be shown at the Blank Wall Gallery in Athens, Greece in 2018. Sheri splits her time between Arizona and Labrador, Canada, and is dedicating herself to pushing her photography and digital art even further.

Sheri's work is currently being sold on the curated ArtBoja website, and can be seen at www.sheriemersonphotography.com. Her regular website is www.sheriemerson.com.


Best in Show
Marina Smelik

Marina’s involvement with art started in early childhood. Since then she experimented with many different techniques and styles. Marina have done plain-air pastel painting, cerography, etching, watercolor, mixed media, and oil painting. Over time 3D art became most appealing to her. Now she is focused on direct stone carving and ceramics. The inspiration for Marina’s works always comes from nature. Every piece has simple organic form combined with texture, pattern, and color that is most suitable for it.

There is nothing better and more powerful than nature. Her energy and beauty have always been the source of Marina’s inspiration. The more she observe and explore nature, the more she marvel at its originality and uniqueness. Most of her works were created under this influence and reflect organic forms and uniqueness of the nature.

Marina’s favorite medias are stone and ceramics. When working with stone Marina listens to what it “tells” her. Every stone has it’s own character. Sometimes stone is collaborator, sometimes it’s an opponent. In most cases stone will force to bring up the beauty of it to the forefront while pushing back on carver’s own feelings. In rare occasions stone will fully cooperate and allow express Marina’s own thoughts and enrich them with purity of material.

Please visit Marina's website to purchase her award winning piece or to see more of her work.


Honorable Mention (Traditional)
Marti White

Marti White is a mixed media artist from Tucson, Arizona. Her work is exhibited nationally and locally. Marti works in watercolor, acrylic, collage, assemblage and other mixed media. She is a Signature member of the Contemporary Artists of Southern Arizona which she served as president for six years, a Juried Member of the Southern Arizona Watercolor Guild, a Signature Member of the International Society of Acrylic Painters, an Associate of The Drawing Studio and member of the Contemporary Art Society, an arm of the Tucson Museum of Art. Marti’s work is an expression of her inner self. She seldom plans her work, but lets it evolve. Her work is sometimes representational, but often abstract.

To see more of Marti's work, please visit her website.


Honorable Mention
(Digital & Photography)
Esther Byrt

Esther fell in love with art as soon as she was able to hold a crayon. As a child she whiled away many hours colouring or trying to draw comic book characters. She experimented with sketching in various mediums and later ventured into oil, acrylic and watercolour painting. Ah, but when she discovered digital art she finally found the niche she loves. Now she has the means to use her passion for photography and art together and the techniques to combine them into her vision.

To inquire about this award winning piece or to view more of Esther's work, please visit her website.


ceramic sculpture

Honorable Mention
Lisa Battle

Lisa Battle is an artist who creates a distinctive style of abstract, curvilinear sculptures by handbuilding with stoneware clay. Her work explores organic form, line and undulating movement that is reminiscent of the sensual curvilinear grace of natural landscapes. She is inspired by the patterns created by the forces of nature, found in walks along the seashore; in travels through the American southwest among desert cliffs, canyons and formations of weathered rock eroded by wind and water; and in the shapes of plants and the human body. Lisa has a life-long love of dance, and her work often evokes the gestures and arching movements of a dancer. In her exploration of form, she pares down natural shapes to their abstract essence, accentuating smooth clean lines to achieve simplicity and elegance. As a viewer moves around the work, the lines advance and recede, giving an undulating sense of movement.

The subtle surface treatments of her work are derived from atmospheric firing techniques, particularly in a multi-chambered Noborigama wood kiln. The wood firing process leads to surfaces that have depth and subtle variations of texture and color, imparted by the movement of wind and fire through the kiln. The result is both a visual and tactile experience in which the surface is inherently integrated with the form.

Lisa began working with clay about 13 years ago after completing a masters’ degree in psychology. Her sculptures have been shown in juried exhibitions in the Washington, DC and New York metro areas. Lisa lives and works in Maryland, where she is a member of the wood fire community at Monocacy River pottery near Frederick, Maryland. She is a former trustee of the Baltimore Clayworks, a resident artist at The Clay Co-op in Rockville, Maryland, and a member of the board of the Washington Sculptors’ Group.

To purchase this award winning piece or to view more of Lisa's work, please visit her website.


Honorable Mention (Traditional)
Laara Cassells

Laara Cassells’ current series is called “becoming” and depicts girls between 12 and 13 years old. This is a fascinating time as it marks that important transitional period from childhood to adolescence. Cassells’ is attempting to catch those last moments of innocence before that sense of “knowing” arrives. As this is a liminal stage when the individual is “neither here nor there; they are betwixt and between” (Victor Turner) there are portraits where the model shows a pensive, thoughtful moment as well as images of the girls being competent and powerful. Being a teenager has never been easy and Cassells wishes to portray some of the inconsistencies as these girls deal with the challenge of feeling invincible and invisible at the same time.

To purchase this award winning piece or to see more of Laaras work, please visit her website.


Honorable Mention
(Digital & Photography)
Barbara Mierau-Klein

Barbara Mierau-Klein’s fine art images reflect her fascination with the beauty of color and light. Her artwork covers a wide variety of subjects, sometimes with whimsical elements, at times with a hint of the fantastical, often with elements of nature, always with intriguing color and light effects. Discovering the world of digital photo compositing a few years ago, Barbara fell in love with the creative possibilities. Layering multiple images, textures and effects feels like working with magic and allows her to design something unique and new that transforms and morphs the reality of the constituent parts. She hopes her art captures your imagination as well, resonates with you, and makes you pause and wonder if only for a moment.

As a passionate landscape and nature photographer since her teenage years, many of the photos Barbara uses in her compositions are her own. Yet going wherever her inspiration of the day may take her, she also uses stock photos and relies on textures and artistic elements from others. A native of Germany, Barbara lives in the Washington, D.C. area. Lately, she has found her way back to spending more time in Germany and Europe again, or she is off travelling the world to capture photos of beautiful landscapes and nature. You can enjoy her photographs and publications on her photography website www.barbaramierauklein.com.

Barbara’s more recent published and award wining digital art images are on display on her portfolio site www.artboja.com/art/0xmo9f and in select galleries in the US.


Honorable Mention
Katty Smith

The subject matter fueling my creative process is always constant, the female figure; however, there is never a predetermined picture in my mind of the finished product. The partial to realistic female face is a defining trademark of most of my works and often sets the wheels in motion. I want the faces to exemplify the female human spirit of strength and/or compassion. This love of the female human spirit resonates from my childhood growing up among very strong close knit women.

Placing twenty-five pounds of clay on an armature is often my starting point, as this was my first instructional method for sculpting. Using this technique, I let the clay become the guide and I begin to see a piece evolving and I follow the lead. This is, for me, by far the most rewarding way to create a piece of sculpture.

Even though the head is usually built solid, other techniques such as coiling and slab building are used in my work. This is especially true when sculpting torsos and wall pieces. The vibrant colors in my work are created by mixing Terra Sigillata and Mason stains in a process of two firings. My goal in sculpting women is to convey to those who view the work, a sense of personal connection to women in their lives who have influenced them.

To purchase this award winning piece or to see more of Katty's work, please visit her website.


Honorable Mention (Traditional)
Rhea Cutillo

Born on the summer solstice, 1987, in Philadelphia, PA, U.S.A. Rhea Cutillo traveled the states before graduating from Mills College, Oakland, CA in 2011. Currently residing in Los Angeles, California her work has been shown and sold internationally including participation in residencies in California, Iceland, and China. With academic training in both Fine Art and Philosophy, she seek to explore questions of existence through personal positions, and spark contemporary dialogues of unity in human experience.

"I am interested in epistemic experience, both in the physical and immaterial realms. My work seeks truth in the universality of human experience. At the crux of my creative process is an ambiguity of identity. What is human existence without social context? My practice consists of documentation and interpretation of the natural world and how I exist in it. My photographs are intrigued by vast landscapes, often with horizon lines that stretch out indefinitely - thereby being infinite, yet also unattainable. I often imagine myself in these worlds; my paintings are meant to be expansions of space into the immaterial, cerebral, and emotional realms.

My current and latest series - Battles for Peace - explores the fragility of our comfort as the state of the world changes rapidly. Ideas of imminent or sudden destruction is becoming more present in our societies and psyche. I pull imagery from World War II photographs as well as seemingly untouched landscapes around the world. My commentary imagines that there is no more surface of this earth - no more open space - that is uncontrolled by industry or political domination. Perhaps, also including our own inner selves."

To purchase this award winning piece or to see more of Rhea's work, please visit her website.


Honorable Mention
(Digital & Photography)
Sandra Kuprion-Thomas

Sandra Kuprion-Thomas has been photographing since she was a young girl. She will tell you that she is the "black sheep" in her family. This is because since the early nineteen hundreds there have been over 50 professional photographers in her family. This includes her father, grandfather, aunt and uncles. Sandra chose the field of business and is an executive at an educational technology company. She lives in Dallas, Texas.

To inquire about this award winning piece or to see more of Sandra's work please email her directly.


Honorable Mention
Loretta Ana Kaufman

Loretta Kaufman is a first generation Croatian-American sculptor and painter. Originally from New York, raised in Venezuela, Loretta has lived and worked in South Africa and the Bahamas. She now works out of her studio in Nashville. Loretta was a faculty member of the Greenville County Museum of Art School where she taught sculpture and completed residencies in the South Carolina Arts Commission Arts In Education Program. She has given numerous workshops and shared her knowledge with both youth and adults in educational and institutional settings. Loretta is an Emeritus member (clay) in Piedmont Craftsmen and a member of of the National Association of Women Artists. Articles and reviews of her work have been published in Atlanta Art Papers, Boston Herald, Charlotte Observer and Ceramics Monthly. South Carolina ETV has also produced several monographs about Loretta. Permanent Collections holding her work include Environmental Research Foundation, Washington, DC; San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts, TX; Bank of America, London, England, among others. Her full biography is listed in both Who's Who In American Art and Who's Who In America. Loretta's oil painting, "Three Of A Kind: Series HR" is included in Peter Waldor's limited edition, coffee table, hardcover book of poetry Gate Posts With No Gate - The Leg Paint Project. Readings and exhibitions throughout the US, Canada and Europe are planned around an early 2018 release date.

Artist Statement

Nature and the natural world have been at the center of Loretta Kaufman's art for nearly five decades. Birds flocking overhead or an outgoing tide can influence her work. She incorporates tears, rips an other surface treatments in her sculpture to express the energies and rhythms of the life around us. Wanting to add another layer in her ceramic work, Loretta formulated a textured stone clay body that would be left natural. Her sculpture has been described as containing an interesting tension between symmetry and fluidity, with its raw unglazed surfaces and organic forms that undulate with life.

To inquire about this award winning piece or to see more of Loretta's work please visit her website.


Honorable Mention (Traditional)
Anastiscia Chantler Lang

Hailing from Toronto, Canada, a self-taught artist with an M.A. in Psychology, Anastiscia relocated to Lake Tahoe in 2015. Anastiscia has lived in Canada, Japan, Cambodia, and USA and has traveled extensively working in fashion and handbag design. In her colorful mix mash of style, she uses pastels, oil pastels, pen and marker, acrylics and colored pencils to convey feelings and experiences. A majority of her artwork incorporates vibrant edgy colors, for she believes that "bold colors are the arousing enthusiasm of life".

In 2008, Anastiscia contracted Lyme disease, a serious, debilitating and painful disease, which if left untreated becomes life threatening. She has been on a roller coaster ride of journey through loss, pain, disappointment and discouragement. It is through on going treatment and encouragement her art has made a comeback bolder and more expressive than ever. Through the sales of her artwork she donates to Hand in Hand for Lyme, a nonprofit organization that helps Lyme patients in crisis - www.handinhandforlyme.com

Anastiscia's artworks are created to be thought provoking pieces, invoking emotion and a sense of wonder from viewers. The subjects in these pieces all have a unique and innate beauty in subtle forms and features. The idea behind these works is to bring out the inner spirit, passion and strength of people and animals that are often overlooked. The vibrant colors often seen in many of these art works further illustrate the poignant inflection that the mood portrays on the audience, as bright colors is how she chooses to see the world.

The Inspiration- Human Element Series -Honoring Women

In her contemporary human expression pieces she conveys - the grace, beauty, sensuality, power, strength, and confidence without arrogance, of the female essence. These magnificent pieces reflect how she sees women all over the world, making a difference in everyday lives, with extraordinary poise and elegance.  In many of the pieces, you will see circles integrated in the artwork. For Anastiscia, circles are a part of almost every piece because they represent life, coming full circle. A circle has no break and holds all that cannot be broken, destiny within the journey of life.

To purchase this award winning piece and to see more of Anastiscia's work, please visit her website.


Honorable Mention
(Digital & Photography)
Megan Conaty

Megan Conaty is an Orange County, Californai based photographer. She is currently a student at Cal State Fullerton University. Megan's work focuses on open ended narratives usually in interior or exterior abandoned locations.

To purchase this award winning piece or to see more of Megan's work please visit her website.


Honorable Mention
Martie Geiger-Ho

Martie Geiger-Ho read it in print and heard it expressed aloud. And now she too believe that one of the main reasons why she and so many other people are driven to make ceramics is because they have discovered that by shoving our hands into oozing, earthy, life-sustaining, soft, sticky, moldy, muddy clay that they can, for a brief period of time, reconnect with nature on a simple but intimate level.

It is widely reported by many ceramists that when they begin working with clay that they feel rejuvenated and more in touch with the natural world. However, when Martie touches clay that tactile encounter takes her a step beyond the normal pleasant primal associations experienced by most potters. For her, contact with clay induces more than mere physical sensations—it also launches her into the realm of the imagination where her mind seems to give way to the world of the unconscious and its ancient archetypes.

Not content to, merely, revel in the primal experience of tapping into my archaic inner-self, Martie often feels compelled to express these experiences directly in clay. This need to acknowledge the spiritual aspect of working with clay, through the medium clay, has motivated her to make work that celebrates and comments on her psychic association with the ceramic process itself. Her association with the primal aspect of clay as terra firma, along with her desire to connect with the history, traditions, and the materials necessary for the production of ceramics, to include earth, fire, air and water, has led Martie to write her own kiln god myth, create kiln god/dess themed performance pieces, and finally to make kiln god/dess sculptures.

Inspired by myths and surviving primeval rituals about the craft and processes of pottery making and firing, Martie's shrine-like sculptures, figurative deities and masks are modern interpretations of the potters' protective guardian of the kiln firing, the “kiln god.” While many different beliefs, customs and types of kiln gods have been produced since antiquity among diverse cultures throughout the world, it appears that kiln god customs in the United States are among the most unstructured in terms of not having any prescribed standards of form and appearance, or formally acknowledged rituals or customs.

In the United States, kiln gods are more often than not, given the form of small fanciful figures or creatures that usually sport whimsical or grotesque features. Acting like charms or talismans meant to guard against all kinds of bad luck, kiln gods are designed to protect the ceramists' fragile ware from all types of harm, including unlucky aesthetic problems such as glaze defects, which sometimes occur during the precarious and final glaze firing.

Furthermore, in the United States, kiln gods, or kiln guardians as she sometimes like to refer to them, are, usually, spontaneously fashioned by potters from wet clay just prior to a kiln firing. Western kiln gods are most often displayed on the roof of a kiln just over the kiln door where they can “watch” over the firing, while the kiln gods of China are generally positioned in their own permanent Taoist or “folk religion” temple or shrine, which is always located near the kiln. In Chinese cities such as Jingdezhen and Hong Kong, kiln gods are still worshiped and honored as important deities that help to protect the welfare of the entire ceramic community. Each ceramic producing city or region of China has its own local deity.

To purchase this award winning piece or to see more of Martie's work please visit her website.


Honorable Mention (Traditional)
Rebecca Case

Rebecca Case has been drawing and painting since she was eight. She has taken several painting workshops in floral and landscape. Artists that have inspired Rebecca include Buck Paulson, Jerry Yarnell, Michael James Smith for landscape and Gary Jenkins, Rodenta Soprano and Joanna McEwan for florals. Currently Rebecca enjoys photography, scratchboard, and oil and acrylic painting of wildlife, flowers, and landscapes.

Having moved to Michigan several years ago, she found an abundance of wildlife and exciting new subjects to photograph and paint in the woodlands near her house. Her travels throughout Michigan, the U.S. and Canada allow her to capture a variety of natural subjects for both painting and photography. Rebecca’s painting style ranges from close-up and detailed for floral paintings to photo-realism for landscapes and seascapes.

Commenting on her painting philosophy, Rebecca says “I paint because I simply enjoy the zen I get into while creating my artwork. I am not trying to change the world or influence others; for me painting is a lifestyle. My subjects and the many different media I use vary from day to day, painting to painting; depending on my mood. I have many ideas that I hope to get to in my lifetime”.

Her work has appeared at numerous galleries and public places in Michigan and Minnesota as well as in juried International on-line exhibits. Also she received a Finalist and Excellence Award in Photographer’s Forum Magazine Annual Spring Photography Contest.

She is a member of the Mid-Michigan Art Guild, Shiawassee Arts Center, Lansing Art Gallery and Arts Council of Greater Lansing. She is also an Active member of the International Society of Scratchboard Artists (Juried).

To purchase this award winning piece or to see more of Rebecca's work, please email her directly.


Honorable Mention
Kim Thoman

Kim Thoman has been painting and exhibiting in the San Francisco Bay Area and nationally for over 30 years. Selected grants include the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation of Taos, NM, Vermont Studio Center Residency Grant and Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Change Grant. She has a BA from UC Berkeley and MA from San Francisco State University and was a college art instructor until 2012. Her art reflects her philosophical belief that duality exists in everything. She has a fascination with opposites, such as intellect and intuition, male and female, body and soul, light and dark, and of course life and death.

To purchase this award winning piece or to see more of Kim's work, please visit her website.


Honorable Mention (Traditional)
Jayshree Shah

Jayshree Shah is a Mumbai based Indian-contemporary fine artist. She spent many years as an art director in a leading advertising agency and has now shifted her focus to creating art on canvas. A self-taught painter, she soon realised the importance of formal training in art which led her to pursue her diploma in the fine arts at Rachna Sansad College in her early forties.

She uses art to deal with her inner battle and the paradoxes and dualities of life. Her artworks usually shed a light on the core human qualities of hypocrisy and uncertainty. She believes that these concepts make life complex but also beautifully interesting. Since most of her work deals with her own experiences or the collective experiences of all women, a lot of her paintings have a portrait of a woman as the central object. Her experience as a graphic designer shows strongly in her early work and those early art pieces are bold statements with strong messages and direct imagery. In recent years, her fine art training has helped her express those ideas in a more subtle manner.

She now uses heavy symbolism to depict the complexities of life. Cigarette smoke symbolises impermanence, lotus - a higher spiritual stage, jars are metaphorical traps and so on. Some recurring symbols that appear in her artworks are women painted in Indian miniature style and mannequins, both of which represent different aspects of her persona (or the duality that we spoke of earlier). The Indian miniature woman depicts her traditional, conservative roots; while the mannequins portray a modern, progressive women who has her own identity, but is still stuck in the trap of society's rules and regulations, her own complexes and her own prejudices.

One can describe her work as a combination of surrealism and spiritualism with a modern twist. She paints in oil or acrylics in large, irregular-sized canvases. Her trademark dark or black backgrounds help highlight the bright, colourful Indian miniatures and mannequins in the paintings. And she uses various block printing and geometric patterns in that dark background to help weave together the narrative and the disjoint objects in her collage-like artwork.

To purchase this award winning piece or to see more of Jayshree's work please email her directly.


Honorable Mention
(Digital & Photography)
Erin McCluskey

Erin McCluskey grew up in Ridgefield, Connecticut. She graduated from Tulane University in 2013 having double majored in Psychology and Theater Performance. Erin now lives out her performance passion working as an actress in TV, film, commercials and theater. Erin developed her love of visual art by watching her father take photographs throughout her childhood. Erin believes in telling stories through art that highlight the commonalities in all our different human experiences. Her most recent photographs are inspired by her travels. Erin lives in New Orleans, Louisiana.

To inquire about this award winning piece or to see more of Erin's work, please email her directly.


Honorable Mention
Stephanie Schafer

Stephanie Schafer grew up in the small town of Gig Harbor, WA currently residing in Lakewood. She has always loved to create art pieces and dabbled in many different mediums but found true excitement with collage. Never having any classical training in the visual arts, she has recently left a long time career of 14 years in the retail world to pursue her passion for art. She likes to create with recyclable materials in a non conventional way showing insight to the inner depths of her mind.

To inquire about this award winning piece or to see more of Stephanie's work, please email her directly.


Honorable Mention (Traditional)
Natalie Reilly

Natalie Reilly was born and raised in Southern California. Currently she resides there with her husband and two children. She attended Fullerton College in the early 1990's where she took art history, painting and drawing classes. It was at that time she knew she had a passion for acrylic brush painting.

Her paintings focus on bold colors and clean lines. Some of her paintings focus on a simple subject and others tell more of a story. Many of her pieces are nature and travel inspired. Her other inspirations come from her Southern California roots and the places near her hometown. Acrylic paint is the medium she uses. Much of her work on canvas is created with a constant blend of bright acrylic color.

She has been in several live galleries, and online juried exhibitions. Some of her pieces have been awarded. She has had works published in artists magazines. Her paintings have been sold to private collectors, some who have commissioned her to paint additional pieces for them.
Her belief is that each piece of artwork should be a challenge to create. For her, it is a necessity to have to think through every brush stroke, color blend, composition and subject matter. Taking a painting from an empty white canvas to something unique and captivating is what keeps her practicing at mastering her skill as an artist. Art is a great communicator...everyone sees it differently. This is the inspiration that keeps her painting until her fingers ache.

To see more of Natalie's work please visit her website.


Honorable Mention
(Digital & Photography)
Nancy Pallowick

As a young woman, Nancy Pallowick pursued several different mediums, including but not limited to, batik and weaving. While both allowed her to explore her love of color, design and texture, there was still something missing. After taking time off to raise a family, she began her study of photography at the Boca Raton Museum of Art. There she was able to hone her skills in the technical aspects of photography, while focusing on the use of color and light in her photographs. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Special Education, with an emphasis on behavioral theory and a master’s degree in Human Resource Development. She has utilized her educational background to teach both children and adults various methods in art.

In the past several years, she has participated in many on line exhibitions, Contemporary Art Gallery On line and Fusion Art, winning best of show on both websites. She has also exhibited in several brick and mortar shows, Black Box Gallery, Palm Beach Photographic Center and Florida Museum of Photographic Arts (FMoPA). She recently won second place in the abstract category in an international juried show at the FMoPA, where the piece remains part of their permanent collection.

To inquire about this award winning piece or to see more of Nancy's work, please visit her website.


Honorable Mention
Hsun-yuan Hsu

I am fascinated by how sculpture, typically stiff and immovable, can be transformed by modeling and design into something moving, alive and growing. I base my sculptural works on nature, most often plants, to create living sculptures that show this idea of movement and growth. I also incorporate fractal and geometric patterns like spirals, to contrast and draw attention to the organic forms in my sculptures. In addition, I create using 2-D media: especially drawing and oil painting.

I take my inspiration from fruits and vegetables I have seen daily in markets in America and Asia. I have created works based on artichokes, sugar apples, and dragon fruit, which I picked because of their mixture of colors and diverse textures. For example, in Sugar-Apple, I modified the form of the fruit by adding geometric spines, or sugar crystals, to show its overwhelming sweetness. I imagine new life sprouting out of these familiar plants, adding tail-like forms and spirals. By combining these elements, I aim to show the warmth and dynamic nature of life.

To inquire about this award winning piece or to see more of Hsun-yuan's work, please visit her website.


Honorable Mention (Traditional)
Lisa Daniels

Specializing in abstracts, architecture and nature incorporating a range between linear structure and free-flowing emotion to represent the subject I am visualizing. In my subjects I show their beauty, strength and relations to their surroundings. The abstracts are my emotional expressions of the subjects of buildings and nature in color and mood. My abstracts tend to be simplistic in order for the audience to be inspired by the colors and movements within the paintings.

To see more of Lisa's work please visit her website.


Honorable Mention
(Digital & Photography)
Angela Amias

Angela Amias is a mixed-media artist and psychotherapist, an ardent lover of people, and an honored witness to the beautiful complexities of the human experience. Angela is best known for her emotionally-evocative and sometimes lyrical portraits of women. Her work reflects her profound faith in the power of honoring the messy nature of being human, as well as her belief that welcoming all aspects of ourselves— the light and the dark— is a path to creating a life of beauty and meaning. Angela Amias’s artwork is featured in the Faces of the Divine Feminine Oracle, published in November 2017. Born and raised in Kansas City, Missouri, Angela now makes her happy home in Iowa City, Iowa.

To inquire about this award winning piece or to see more of Angela's work, please visit her website.


Honorable Mention
Holly Deckard

Holly Deckard Biography

Holly Deckard has loved playing with mud ever since she was a small girl. Every summer, she would take buckets of water from the kiddy pool to make a big mud pond behind the shed, and use the earth to create pretend food and magic potions! She grew up, started a family and got her degree in nutrition science, where her love of food, science and playing with the dirt in her garden grew. She stumbled upon working with clay in 2011 when she took a nine-hour hand building workshop at the local high school. She had never explored any art forms before and didn’t consider herself artistic. Holly was immediately captivated by the process of creating with clay and wanted to learn more. As she explored the art and science of ceramics she discovered a passion that surprised her! Holly then began hanging out in the local clay studio several times a week, soaking up tips and techniques from anyone who would share.

Holly’s functional work is influenced by her love and passion for food. She strives for her pieces to be comfortable to use as well as beautiful. Holly’s attraction to Raku is the unpredictability, the speed of the firing process and the beautiful results. She is continuing her ceramic art education by taking workshops from experienced artists and college level ceramics classes. Holly’s work has been featured in a local art exhibition, and she is a resident artist at Missouri Atist on Main Gallery in St. Charles, MO.

Holly Deckard Artist Statement

Holly’s greatest joy comes from trying new techniques and experimenting with new forms. Her most recent exploration is making sculptures focused on the female form. She loves to make each form somewhat realistic, while incorporating abstract and goddess-like qualities as well. Her current body of work consists of sculptures which explore the goddess contained in all women. The sculptures are formed from clay wheel thrown pieces which are then altered, sculpted and pigmented with of iron oxides, giving them a timeless quality. Each goddess is unique like the real women who inspired them; Holly’s hope is to speak to the “inner goddess” in each of us. She relishes the process of using the elements - earth, water and fire - to experiment with different shapes, textures, glaze combinations and surface pigments to craft beautiful and unique pottery creations.

To inquire about this award winning piece or to see more of Holly's work, please visit her website.


Honorable Mention (Traditional)
Candace Cima

My artistic style is simply to show a scene that can create a story in the viewers mind. When looking at my art no matter what the subject I want the viewer to see a story in their imagination. What the subject meant to me is not the important thing it is that I have painted an image that speaks to the viewers and creates their own story. The ethereal mix of color and texture that is created by watercolors is fascinating to me. Every time water and color meets paper magic happens. And every time magic happens a story is told.

To purchase this award winning piece or to see more of Candace's work please visit her website.


Honorable Mention
(Digital & Photography)
Michelle Webb

Art is as much a part of me as breathing, & combining traditional techniques with state of the art technology I'm able to create my work in so many unique ways.. each day is a gift & I try to show this in my work. -Michelle Webb Lion Art Studio
Michelle is a freelance artist/illustrator living in a coastal town in Australia. Studied fine art, graphic design & art history at Melbourne School of Arts, choosing graphic design as her profession when graduating. Several years ago due to health reasons she had to stop working & spent many years in & out of hospital. During her recovery from one bout, she started sketching & was introduced to digital painting by a fellow artist. 2yrs later she has now set up Lion Art Studio & is working on commissions, books & exhibit art. Recent success- Finalist in The Contemporary Art Awards, selected for The Next Level Exhibition & Publication, Chosen as a featured artist by Corel Software, & receiving top price at 2 recent Auctions. Her spare time is spent living life to the fullest, with her family including daughter & grandson. Michelle's other love is for wildlife, esp the big predators that are being killed off by poaching & trophy hunting....She devotes time & art to help save Tigers, Bears, & esp her favourite Lions, giving back & saving the planet for future generations.
To see more of Michelle's work, please visit her website.


Honorable Mention
Lynne Hanson

After a 25 year career as a clothing designer, Lynne Hanson moved to the fine arts, incorporating her textile background into her works. Using unusual tactile medium combinations, she uses sculpture to express her passion for horses and her own struggles with breast cancer and body image. She earned a post-graduate degree from the prestigious Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising with studies at Parsons School of Design. She now resides in Washington, DC and Sun Valley, Idaho.

To inquire about this award winning piece or to see more of Lynne's work, please visit her website.