Best of Show

The 74th May Show begins on May 4 at the Mansfield Art Center.

MANSFIELD -- Creativity is in full bloom at the Mansfield Art Center’s 74th May Show. The juried art show features the works of 119 artists from all over the state of Ohio.

“This year, the Mansfield Art Center received entries from many new artists in addition to artists that have previously exhibited”, according to Executive Director, George Whitten.

The show opens Saturday, May 4, with an opening reception 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday, May 5. The exhibition runs through June 2 and is free and open to the public thanks to the sponsorship of Mechanics Bank.

This year, the juror for the show was Kevin D. Buckland, a renowned Ohio watercolor artist. Over 450 works were submitted for Buckland to judge.

“I would like to congratulate all winning artists and everyone who entered the competition,” Buckland said. “All your hard work and efforts resulted in an awe-inspiring show.”

He selected Hiroshi Hayakawa’s pastel on paper entitled “Vanitas 14” as Best of Show, praising the piece for its wow factor.

“His eye-catching composition has a very strong lead-in element,” Buckland said. “A simple white triangle, followed by subtle and methodical layering of color, all combine to demand attention.”

As Best of Show recipient, Hayakawa will receive $1,000.

The show’s sponsor, Mechanics Bank, provided four Awards of Excellence. Each artist will receive $250.

The 2019 winners of the Mechanics Bank Awards of Excellence include Charles W. Rowland (watercolor) “Abandoned at Alum Creek,” Harry Melroy (oil on wood) “Slow Moving Cold Front,” Carol Adams (enamel on steel and LED) “Light-Wall: Awakening,” and Peggy Stover (watercolor) “White Iris.”

Buckland commented on two of the pieces.

“I enjoyed the realistic Iris painting by Peggy Stover,” he said. “The vivid color, dimensional form and contrasting values came together for a beautiful painting. Harry Melroy’s ‘Slow Moving’ sculpture is an impressive piece of woodcarving. You can feel the tension between the locomotive and the elephant.

"The carving’s whimsical style and contrasting color have created a witty piece of art. Very well done.”

Chris Misencik-Bunn’s watercolor “I Know What You Are Thinking” won the Margaret Twitchell Swank Painting Award, for which she received $250.

“Chris Misencik-Bunn has captured the beauty of a rainy day,” Buckland commented. “If you’re the kind of a person that loves a rainy day, you’ll love this painting. There’s a nice rhythm between the figure and the background. This painting is executed beautifully.”

Other award recipients include:

• Sid Yellen Photography Award, $250 — Julie Jones “The Ultimate Sacrifice” — B&W photograph.

• Susan B. Smith Fiber Award, $250 — MP Marion “After the Storm” — handmade paper diptych.

• Whitten Studios Ceramic Award, $250 — T.R. Steiner “Terrestrial Fragments” — soda-fired stoneware.

• Three Blick Art Material Innovation Awards, $100 gift certificates for each;

#1 Robyn Schaffer “Faces” — ink, paper, cork, and foam.

#2 Aaron Rebel “Steam Engine” — metal.

#3 Dan McDonald “Collaborative Calamity: Naramja is not the new orange” — steel, bronze, and faux fur.

• Four Honorable Mentions at the Juror’s Discretion

#1 Whit Martin “Simone #2” — inkjet photograph.

#2 Franklin Miller “Insect Armor” — reed sculpture.

#3 Olivia Huth “Professional Shirt Laundry” — oil on canvas.

#4 Rebecca Kaler “Obscurity Series - MULTI” — gouache.

The Mansfield Art Center is located at 700 Marion Ave., Mansfield, Ohio and is open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Tuesday – Sunday. Closed on Mondays. For more information, visit

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