Winners Announced for the 2020 Armstrong 2D National Art Exhibition


3rd Place Winner: Ash Dahlke, “Silver Edtes. Lean”

Kee’Ara Smith, Section Editor

Armstrong’s 2020 2D National Art Exhibition took place over a span of two weeks, Jan. 13-31. There were a total of 19 pieces, some pieces were made by the same Artist. 

The 2D Art exhibit contestants were judged this past Wed., Jan. 29. There were three winners all juried by Brian Ralph. Ralph’s Bachelor in Fine Arts from the Rhode Island School of Design gave him more than enough credibility to judge. 

Ralph has over 5 published graphic novels, “Cave-in,” “Climbing Out,” “Daybreak, Volumes 1-3.” Ralph was awarded 2 Ignatz awards as well as being a Harvery and Eisner nominee. He’s even won a Xeric Award. 

Most students were excited about another professor of high status judging their art. Ralph went on to say that most winners were chosen based off of first impression and he spent the last hour figuring out why he liked them. “I’m learning to be better with trusting my first instinct”, said Ralph.

“I didn’t notice the first and second place winners pieces until after they were juried and it makes me think; after something has been judged, evaluated, and a value has been placed on it by a certain individual with a certain status it makes me think and want to look at it more.” said Patrice Jackson, a Fine Arts major. 

The first place winner was Meghan Leia Bissonnette and her piece was titled Ghosted”, the painting comes off as if there is actually a ghost looking at you. “This is a piece that stuck with me, it’s a piece I can look at for a year… I think all the pieces are unique. They all give their own perspective”, said Ralph. 

Second place winner was a piece titled “Empty” by Drew Pate. This piece was a little different from the others because it was literally an empty frame. However, the piece wasn’t framed itself. 

Third place winner was a three piece portrait, titled “Silver Edtes.Lean” by Ash Dahlke. This piece was different considering it was a total of 3 different pieces but titled as one. It caught the eyes of many students and faculty members as well as the juror. 

“I agree with the placings because they all offer such a great variety and each piece is objective in its own way. I did think piece 3 deserved honorable mention but that’s just my opinion,” said Demarious Hartley, a Graphic Design major. Although the placing only went as high as third place, there was also a piece that stood out amongst the audience. It was titled, “Death”, by Elton Burgest. It was a portrait that displayed the lifeless body of a black male, with 6 other African Americans surrounding him. The piece was originally a painting from the audience’s perspective that was soon turned digital by the artist. “I loved this piece, I just wished he hadn’t turned it digital”, said Ralph. 

“It was really nice of the Scad professor to come over because he is able to bring a more unique different perspective considering he’s from the SCAD campus that Georgia Southern might not be thinking about”, said Ken Sisco, a Visual Arts major.

Each piece had its own space within the venue giving the audience a chance to view all pieces individually. Most of the pieces were up for sale ranging as high as $2200, and as low as $35. 

The event was hosted by Raymond Gaddy, the university’s Gallery Director and Assistant Professor of painting and drawing. The Art Exhibit provided hors d’oeuvres and light refreshments to the audience. 

The Department of Arts has a wide range of things displayed in the Gallery throughout the year. This exhibit was one of the first to kick off the semester. For future exhibits, the Gallery is located in the Fine Arts building.