So the first ever Art Prize is one for the record books. I will say that I was mildly interested in the concept and was thrilled that art was being produced en masse here in Michigan. However, the stain of the DeVos family and their influence on trying to kill public education and working against LGBT equality here in Michigan made me stay away. I will go on record as saying that Rick DeVos (one of the creators of the contest) is smoking hot. But that does not excuse him from his family’s rather icky political doings.
So, if you didn’t get to Grand Rapids for the event, I thought I would summarize some of what you missed so you could talk about it over the water cooler and appear hip and with it with your artsy-fartsy friends. The winning piece, Open Water no.24 by Ran Ortner. If you grew up in the 70’s like I did, you probably marveled at one of these in Spencer Gifts on your trip to the mall for your Member’s Only jacket. Yup, Ortner’s piece is pretty much the static version of that.
3rd place, Portraits by Eric Daigh. Any horror buff will immediately be able to see the similarities. The portraits are made with thumbtacks and push pins. Oooo, office supplies as art.
5th place, Moose by Bill Secunda. Look out Mr. Moose, you never know when Sarah Palin will be in Grand Rapids for some helicopter huntin’.
7th place, Field of Reeds by John Douglas Powers. Okay, I will admit that this one is probably the coolest out of all the winners, but I can’t help but think it looks like a big dog brush.
9th place, Ecstasy of ... by Jason Hackenwerth. Balloons? Really? Is this (and the silly paper airplanes) what the art world has become? Jeff Koons needs to be taken out NOW.
10th place, winddancer 2 by Michael Westra. Nuff said.
Before I hear any calls of sour grapes, please note that all these references were made by my artsy fartsy friends when discussing the artwork. You can thank me later for saving you the trip north to Grand Rapids. : )