Announcing The Poetic Pen Best of Show Awards

Announcing The Poetic Pen Best of Show Awards

23 Sandy Gallery is pleased to announce our Best of Show Awards for The Poetic Pen. Since all of the submissions for this incredibly beautiful show far exceeded our expectations, it was a very difficult to choose, but based on a variety of criteria, we have selected four exceptional pieces for their outstanding visual and poetic appeal and mastery of the craft. In no particular order, here is a bit of information about each of our award winners. Click on the links below to view larger images of each piece.


Our first Best of Show Award is for Thomas Ingmire’s Diva Fall Jive: Mr. Verb Visits the Tayu. Ingmire’s artist book is exquisite in concept, construction, and execution. Originally using the artist's abstract pen strokes for their aesthetics rather than their message, these symbols were eventually “translated” by British artist and writer, Christine Kennedy. Using language recognition software, Kennedy was able to effectively convert Ingmire’s “letters” into readable text using a new alphabet. His unique artist book is a fascinating melding of tradition and technology. Learn more about this piece here.

Libro, Tejiendo palabras/Weaving Words Book by Marina Soria


Marina's Libro Tejiendo Palabras/Weaving Words Book, incorporates vibrant embroidery on the cover with equally colorful and elegant calligraphic text. These two treatments create a book that beautifully stands on its own as an art object. Soria’s text is a fine example of calligraphy that adheres to the technical expectations. The highlight of the book is how the lettering starts of very formal on the first panel but becomes more free form and nearly abstract as the viewer moves across the pages—eventually emulating the readability of the embroidery on the cover. This book is just stunningly beautiful. See more photos of this book here. 

Psalm 42:11 by Carl Kurtz


Our next award winner, Carl Kurtz, has taken the art of calligraphy and masterfully executed his piece with astounding precision. Psalms 42:11 is as eye-catching from afar as it is close up. The use of graphite lends a textural quality to the lettering, which is unexpected and appealing to the eye—softening the rigid lines of the forms. We think the positioning of each letter to create readability is an engineering feat! The letters fit together like a puzzle, coercing and challenging you to read every word. Catch this puzzler here.

Imagination by Rod Sawatsky


Local artist, Rod Sawatsky is our fourth award recipient for Imagination. A quote by Mark Twain, “You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus," which has inspired several interpretations, makes this piece a favorite to almost everyone who has visited the gallery. For accomplishing what most art strives to do—evoking emotion and reaction, this piece is a winner. Even without the words, Sawatsky has created a beautiful painting, but one that compels the viewer to ponder the sentiment of Mark Twain’s words. See a large image of this piece here.

Congratulations to our Poetic Pen winners! We think this is a beautiful exhibit and hope you will come by the gallery to experience it for yourself soon. The Poetic Pen will be on view through July 28, 2012.

And stay tuned! On the closing day of the show, we will announce the Librarian's Choice Awards. We have mailed catalogs to our library customers who will vote on who should receive these awards. One lucky winner will be a purchase prize, with the winning work being purchased by the gallery and donated to one of the lucky voting libraries.