The American Watercolor Society has announced the list of artists accepted into its 155th International Exhibition to be held April 11 – 30, 2022, at the Salmagundi Club in New York City. This year’s jury of selection included Tony Couch, Andy Evansen, Sue Pink, Pablo-Ruben Lopez Sans, and Antonio Masi. Now it’s in the hands of the awards juror to pick the winners. (Watch this space.)
Here are a few of the pieces from this year’s show that have already caught my eye.
The American Watercolor Society has an interesting history. “Just a year and a half after the four-year struggle between the states, post-war New York City was in the process of revival,” the story on their website goes. “Change was occurring which would enliven the Industrial Revolution with products to make life easier.
“New York was much smaller geographically and in population. The northern border was where 59th Street is today. Central Park was nothing but meadows and farmland.
“Across the country, a cultural revolution was taking hold. Following the war, people were searching for beauty to enhance their lives. They were looking for art to help bring them joy. Watercolor painting was coming into its own and competing heavily with other media. Girls’ finishing schools were teaching watercolor painting in addition to manners and fashion.
“Despite cold, muddy streets, horse-drawn carriages and long travel times, a group of artists met in the evening of December 5, 1866. The meeting was held in Gilbert Burling’s studio in the New York University Building. Painters’ studios, in those days, were somewhat fancier than we expect them to be today. They often had walls decorated with tapestries, floor-to-ceiling displays of paintings, oriental rugs and spittoons on the floors, and the heavy odor of cigar smoke in the air.” And thus it all began.