The Paul Nigra Center for Creative Arts has unveiled its 2016 Statewide Summer Art Show, featuring paintings, photography, mosaics, sculptures and mixed media pieces by more than 45 artists from all over New York State. Through the generous support of donors, the Paul Nigra Center for Creative Arts was able to offer $750 in awards and prizes for the participating artists, including the Helen Ireland Hays Memorial Award for watercolor works, the Mary Cleland Art Award for all eligible media and the Frank Nigra Memorial Art Award for all eligible media created by individuals with disabilities.
Helen Ireland Hays was an avid painter with a particular fondness for watercolor. Born and raised in Johnstown, she lived there for nearly all of her 100 years. Hays was a strong supporter of the arts who encouraged and contributed to many arts organizations, programs and individual artists. The recipient of the award named in her honor is Lucy Suhr of Amsterdam for her watercolor painting “Chinese Eagle and Pine.” Honorable mentions went to James Leddick of Oneida Lewis ARC in Utica for his painting “Berries” and Sally Storman of Auburn for her still life “Two Apples.”
Mary Cleland is an artist who has worked many media, including oils, acrylics, watercolor and ceramics. As a retired art teacher, she has shared her love for art with countless people and is thrilled to have a granddaughter following in her footsteps as an artist. For the award named after her, Cleland selected Linda Kollar of Glen and her mixed media piece “Enlightened” as the recipient. Honorable mentions went to Linda Biggers of Broadalbin for her mixed media and eggshell mosaic piece “Moonlight Dancers” and Janene Bouck of Broadalbin for her photograph “Glove City Swamp.”
Frank Nigra was a prolific artist who painted more than 1,000 pieces in his lifetime. He was also the father of the late Paul Nigra, the former longtime executive director of Lexington who gave the arts center its name. Frank Nigra’s work is an inspiration to his family and to the men and women supported by Lexington. The recipient of the award given in his memory is Francis Dempsey of Mayfield for his mixed media piece “Freedom to the Galaxy.” Honorable mentions went to Pritpal Anand of AHRC in Suffolk County for his photograph “Timeless” and Stephanie Brown of AHRC in Suffolk County for her photograph “Inside Out.”
Winners of each award will receive $250. The show will hang from August 4 to October 5. The public is welcome to view the winning pieces as well as the rest of the artwork in the Nigra Arts Center’s Community Gallery Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. or Saturdays 9 a.m. to noon. The Paul Nigra Center for Creative Arts is located at 2736 State Highway 30, Gloversville. For more information, please call (518) 661-9932 or visit www.pncreativeartscenter.org.
Saratoga Arts made this program possible with a Community Arts Grant funded by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.