Art Competition and Exhibition
to judge this years art contest
will offer a plein air
painting workshop in late August
(August 2008) When Todd Reifers was a child,
he would pedal his bicycle over to his grandmothers garage studio
and watch her work as an artist. Those long days of talking and drawing
with her helped inspire him to become the award-winning artist that
he is today.
Reifers, the 2008 Hoosier Salon Best of Show
winner, has agreed to judge the 10th annual Madison Art Competition
and Exhibition. He will also offer an Aug. 29-31 plein air workshop
for artists and judge the artwork created during the plein air paint
The Madison Art Competition and Exhibition, the plein air workshop and
the plein air paint out are all under the umbrella of Artfest,
a series of art events that will take place during the last weekend
in August. At 6 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 30, a bonfire will be held along
the Ohio River just below Firemans Park. The bonfire is a casual
time for the public to meet and mingle with artists. Many of those artists
are also musicians and will have their instruments on hand to perform
during the night.
The Madison Art Competition and Exhibition show opens to the public
Sept. 7 and will run through Sept. 28 at the Madison Art Gallery, 301.
E. Main St. Awards for the competition and the plein air paint out will
be presented in a ceremony at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 31, in front of
the Madison Art Gallery.
Larry Rudolech, a coordinator for the competition and show, said this
year that more than $7,700 will be given away in prizes. Much of that
money was provided by a $6,000 grant from the Southern Indiana Arts
Council. Private residents and local businesses donated the rest of
the prize money.
Each year, our competition is growing and attracting more top
quality artists, said Rudolech, also a Hoosier Salon artisan.
This prestigious art show is a juried exhibit, with honorees selected
through a rigorous statewide competition.
The competition has become fierce, with artists from all over
the region vying for prizes.
Reifers, a lifelong Indiana resident, was born in 1948 in Lafayette,
Ind.. His early exposure to art was through his grandmother, Ann Reifers,
an accomplished amateur painter who developed treasured friendships
with the late Indiana Masters Curry Boehm, V.J. Cariani, Ada Shulz and
At age 14, Reifers, who has studios in Nashville, Ind. and Zionsville,
Ind., sold his first work, a piece depicting a harbor scene. During
his high school years, he won three consecutive scholarships to the
John Herron School of Arts summer program. Later, he trained at
the Kansas City Art Institute and the Art Academy in Cincinnati.
His early career included serving as an illustrator for the Indianapolis
Star and an art director for advertising agencies. Then he toured with
the California Professional Artists Society and studied with the
great watercolor master, John Pike.
Reifers is an associate member of the Oil Painters of America. He won
Best of Show at the 2004 Eastern Regional Exhibition. Other awards include
Best of Show at the 2001 Hoosier Salon, Best First-time Exhibitor at
the 1999 Hoosier Salon, as well as the Indiana Heritage Arts 2003 Patrons
Choice award and 2004 Overall Second Place. He is an artist member of
the North Shore Arts Association (Gloucester, Mass.), the Small Painting
Society of Indiana and the American Impressionist Society.
Reifers, who resides in Indianapolis, paints predominantly on location
or plein-air. He has offered a series of plein air workshops this summer
to artists throughout Indiana and is looking forward to his Madison
I love to ride my motorcycle along the Ohio River in Madison;
it is a lovely town, he said. I look forward to my trip
During the workshop, Reifers said he will offer guidance for plein air
painting, outline goals and discuss how important color values and drawing
accuracy are for painting. He is also excited about the opportunity
he has been given to judge such a prominent event. Judging is
a difficult job, but it is also a venue for an artist to continue to
learn and grow, he said.
Rudolech said it is amazing for an artist of Reifers caliber to participate
in the Madison art contest. We have seen a tremendous growth over
the past five years in the caliber of artists looking to participate
in our event. That an artist of Reifers caliber wants to be part
of our competition shows the level to which our contest is rising.
Prizes during the art competition will include six $300 awards for the
categories of oil and acrylic, and three $300 awards for the categories
of watercolor, pastels and mixed media. There will be numerous additional
awards for varying amounts.
Awards for the plein air paint out include a $500 Best of Show Purchase
Prize donated by Madison Mayor Tim Armstrong and the City of Madison.
Three additional $100 prizes will also be awarded, and a childrens
division will offer awards as well.
For more information about ArtFest, call
the Madison Art Club Gallery at (812) 265-3135, ext. 251.
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