PIQUA — The Miami Valley Region’s Premier Art Exhibition is officially underway. With more than 90 artists participating this year, the show will be a delight for anyone that attends. The Piqua Arts Council’s Annual Piqua Fine Art Exhibition, hosted at Apple Tree Gallery 405 N. Main St in Downtown Piqua, kicked off Thursday, Sept. 5, with its awards reception. The exhibition is sponsored by Koverman Staley Dickerson Insurance, Buckeye Insurance Group, Winans Chocolates and Coffee and Ameriprise Financial – Mullenbrock & Associates. The night featured harpist Bobbie Strobhar, catered appetizers by Stillwater Valley Catering and more than 170 works of art across six different categories. At 8 p.m., the roar of the record number of attendees died down allowing Piqua Arts Council Executive Director Jordan Knepper to get started with the awards.
“It was a great night with a lot of amazing energy,” said Knepper. “We had a record number of people attend the reception from business and community leaders, to sponsors, artists and their significant others.
“We hope that the community will come out and see the amazing work. Piqua is extremely fortunate to have so many artists participating in this exhibit. The quality of the work is amazing and it was extremely tough for the judge to pick the awards. He took more than 2.5 hours to determine the winners,” continued Knepper.
Before the judge chose awards, the Piqua Arts Council invited the community and business leaders in to choose awards. The Buecker Interiors Award went to “Let’s All Go to the Lobby” by Dan Knepper; the Readmore’s Hallmark Award went to “Kentucky River At Frankfort” by Logan Rogers; Edward Jones Investment – Mike McCorkle Office Award went to “Vulcan’s Folly” by Janet Butsch; the Mainstreet Piqua Award went to “Bear on Main Street” by Phillip Erbaugh; the Unity National Bank Award went to “Teaching Flyfishing” by Patricia Dunker; the Thrivent Financial Award went to “Generations Bond” by Shirlee Bauer; the Mutual Federal Savings and Logan Award went to “Idol Promise” by Maureen O’Keefe; the US Bank Award went to “Lovers” by Hyacinth Paul; the city of Piqua Award went to “Badlands” by Margaret A. Green; the Piqua Area Chamber of Commerce Award went to “Fleur Gracieux” by Janet Butsch; the Polysource Inc Award went to “Heading for the Fields” by Regina D. Whip; the Mullenbrock & Associates Award went to “eatery Morning Miami Beach” by Richard Wood; the Jamieson & Yannucci Funeral Home Award went to “This Old Truck” by Tom Kinarney; and the Premier Health – Upper Valley Medical Award went to “Blow” by Jeff Doseck.
Jim Oda of the Piqua Public Library picked the Library Purchase Awards. These pieces will go into the permanent collection of the Piqua Public Library and be rotated through various places. Library Purchase Awards went to: Missy Hines for Anger Unmasked: A Portrait, Jim Moore for Ed, Kyla Paul for Apple Blossoms, Mike Underwood for 200,000 Titles and Tom Kinarney for India.
Awards were sponsored by French Oil Fund fo the Piqua Community Foundation, Harmony Systems, Eagle Printing and Graphis, Melcher Sowers Funeral Home McColloch, Felger, Fite & Gutmann LPA, Adam & Eve, Jamison & Yannucci Funeral Home, Piqua Manor, Galbraith Realtors, Down a River, Down a Beer, Cheryl Burkhardt Cruises Inc. and Jim and Cathy Oda.
The Kathy Oda Memorial Award for best Black and White Photograph went to “Tokyo 2017” by John Rausch and the Thelma Anderson – Best Piqua Artist Award went to “A Quiet Rest” by Rosemary Kienle. In the three dimensional category an honorable mention went to “Zentangle” by N. Jeanne Wenrick, third place went to “Glass Piece” by Dennis Walker, second place went to “Roman Senator” by Bill Danzig, first place went to “Watchful Inferno” by Lindsey Schulze. In the miscellaneous category an honorable mention went to “Gene’s Poinsettias” by Selena Burk, third place went to “Bon Appetit” by Kyna Paul, second place to “Composition #12” by Pam Summers and first place went to “Twenty Hens” by Randy Bennett.
In the photography category honorable mentions went to “Lucky Strike” by Robin Hungerford and “200,000 Titles” by Mike Underwood, third place went to “Memories” by John Pyles, second place went to “Abandoned Chicago R.R. Bridge” by Richard Wood and first place went to “Vintage Memories” by Terry Glass.
In the Water Media category honorable mentions went to “Deam Auto Service” by Rhonda Sloan and “Generations Bond” by Shirlee Bauer, third place to “Kindred Spirit” by Annie King, second place went to “Nancy’s Sunflower” by Kathy Moeller and “Heading for the Fields” by Regina D. Whipp took home first place.
In the Drawing category honorable mentions went to “Bean Blossom Bridge” by Tom Lehman and “Dusk Unfurls” by Erica Keener, third place went to “Winter Cows” by Carol Strock Wasson, second place went to “India” by Tom Kinarney, and first place went to “Six Pence Pub” by Selena Burk.
In the Oil and Acrylic category honorable mentions went to “Jazzman” by Clarice Moore, “Geranium” by Audrey Moody, “Idol Promise” by Maureen O’Keefe, and “Bear on Main Street” by Phillip Erbaugh, third place went to “Let’s All Go to the Lobby” by Dan Knepper, second place went to “Alice’s Looking Glass” by Audrey Moody and first place went to “Thank You” by Meghan Hager.
Juror Rick Wilson said he was choosing between three pieces for best of show and eventually he chose the winner based on the expression on the faces of the girls in the painting. The Best of Show award for the 27th Annual Piqua Fine Art Exhibition went to Dan Knepper for his watercolor work, “A Slice of Thiebauld To Go.”
The exhibit runs through Friday, Sept. 27, during normal Apple Tree Gallery hours of Monday to Friday 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
If interested in purchasing a work, contact the Piqua Arts Council at 937-773-9630.