By Heidi Sutton
The Long Island Museum in Stony Brook kicked off its latest juried art competition, Animal Kingdom: From Tame to Wild, with an artist reception on Sept. 15. This year the museum invited amateur and professional artists from across Long Island to submit up to three pieces of art representing the Animal Kingdom, whether it be a favorite pet, a memorable adventure or a scene from nature.
Neil Watson, executive director of the LIM, congratulated the artists and thanked them for addressing the theme of the exhibit. “We are really thrilled with the quality of this exhibition. Humans have had a really complicated relationship with animals — friend, foe, food — so looking at the different aspects of animals and of wildlife is a really rich subject.”
“We wanted to pair an exhibition like this with the show up at the Art Museum that is about dogs; so we thought this is the perfect opportunity and you all embraced the subject so beautifully,” he said.
A panel of museum staff members selected 75 finalists from a pool of 300 submitted works. Two judges, Seung Lee, professor of art and director of Fine Arts & Graduate Studies at LIU Post, and Christina Mossaides Strassfield, museum director and chief curator at Guild Hall, selected a first-, second-, third- and fourth-place winner along with two honorable mentions.
“Just being in the show itself [selected] from hundreds of entries we had was really significant and you should all be very, very proud. Thank you for giving the museum a beautiful exhibition,” said Lisa Unander, director of eduction at the museum, before announcing the winners.
Facing stiff competition, Paul Edelson of Setauket captured first place with “Yellowstone Bison,” oil on canvas. According to the jurors’ notes, the abstracted theme caught both of them immediately. “The treatment of the material shows experience; well done; powerful brush strokes. You can feel the animal ready to jump out,” they wrote.
Neil Leinwohl of Rockville Centre garnered second place with “Animal Farm,” multimedia on print; Kelynn Z. Alder of St. James was the third-place winner with “Dog on Carpet, Osita,” oil on canvas; and Nicholas Frizalone of Lake Grove captured fourth place with his solar plate etching on paper, “Anticipation.” Honorable mentions were handed to Jeanette Dick of Port Jefferson for her pastel titled “Pecking Order” and Donald Sadowsky of Roslyn Heights for his movable plastic model, “King Kong.”
The exhibition will be on view at The Long Island Museum, 1200 Route 25A, Stony Brook through Oct. 22 in the Visitors Center. For more information call 631-751-0066 or visit www.longislandmuseum.org.
All photos by Julie Diamond