La Quinta Arts Festival is proud to announce our 2010 Award Winners. Twenty-four judges are selected to independently evaluate one media of art on the opening morning of the festival. The level of expertise brought by this panel of judges adds tremendous credibility to our event. We encourage the judges to interact with each artist and ask relevant questions about their process. Booth display is also a component of the judging criteria. We commend the judges and congratulate all of the Artist Award Winners!
Stephanie Gardner, Mixed Media
Stephanie Gardner continues her exploration into the depths of abstract painting. Utilizing a myriad of rare earth elements and other undisclosed materials, Gardner’s canvases exude a meditative quality amplified by her abstract compositions that are carefully laid down throughout months of contemplation.
Not unlike the shift from winter to spring, Gardner’s paintings evoke a perennial timelessness. Within her paintings allusions to ephemeral natural processes lie hidden waiting to be discovered. Like the sparkle on the surface of a river or bark peeling away from a tree branch, subtle nuances of perception lend power to the immediacy of her paintings. That these fleeting moments in time could ever be captured is one thing…that Gardner manages to do it on canvas is something short of miraculous.
Gardner’s paintings unconsciously allude to the Japanese aesthetic of wabi-sabi. According to Leonard Koren, wabi-sabi is the most conspicuous and characteristic feature of what we think of as traditional Japanese beauty and it “occupies roughly the same position in the Japanese pantheon of aesthetic values as do the Greek ideals of beauty and perfection in the West.” Wabi-sabi is a beauty of things imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete. It is the beauty of things modest and humble. It is the beauty of things unconventional.
Chanin Cook & Jonathan Edie