City sculptors take top honors

Regional contest awards local artists


September 19, 2004|By Glenn McNatt | Glenn McNatt,SUN ART CRITIC

Two Baltimore sculptors have been named top prize winners from among more than 400 entries in this year's Trawick Prize, a regional visual arts competition inaugurated last year by the Bethesda Arts & Entertainment District to recognize outstanding artists from the Washington, Virginia and Maryland area.

Sculptor David Page won the $10,000 best in show award for his whimsical entry Paradys- donkie (A Donkey in Paradise), a large, mixed-media sculpture in steel, wood, canvas and felt that resembles an Olympic gymnast's pommel horse.

The Trawick Young Artist Award, which carries a $1,000 prize, was given to Marci Branagan for Beasties 2 (Rabbit), an abstract, furry creature that looks like a child's stuffed animal made of fabric, cotton, bone, rubber and pigment.

Page, 41, was born in Capetown, South Africa, and earned a master of fine arts degree from the University of Maryland College Park. He is a past winner of UM's Sadat Art for Peace Award and the Award for Excellence from the American Craft Council.

Branagan, 23, is a graduate of the Corcoran College of Art and Design and is a past recipient of the school's 1869 Society Faculty Award for Fine Art and Linda Rosenbaum Scholarship.

The other winners were Bethesda sculptor Jeff Spaulding, who was awarded the $2,000 second prize for his abstract wall piece Issue, and painter Randi Reiss-McCormack of Lutherville, who won the $1,000 third-place award for her allegorical Puff and Dick Take a Leap.

Spaulding holds a master of fine arts from Pennsylvania State University and was a Trawick Prize finalist in 2003. Reiss-McCormack earned a master of fine arts from the Maryland Institute College of Art and currently teaches painting at Carroll County Community College.

The winning entries will be displayed with those of the competition's other 15 finalists at the Creative Partners Gallery in Bethesda through Oct. 2.

Entries were judged by Jeffrey W. Allen, collection educator at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond, Peter Dubeau, associate dean of continuing studies at MICA, and Kristen Hileman, assistant curator at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington.

The Trawick Prize was established in 2003 by Carol Trawick, a Bethesda businesswoman and community activist who chairs the Bethesda Arts & Entertainment District. The annual competition is open to all artists residing in Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia.

Creative Partners Gallery is at 4600 East-West Highway in Bethesda. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday noon to 6 p.m. Call 301-951-9441. For information about the Trawick Prize competition, visit the Bethesda Arts & Entertainment District Web site at

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