Regional Fall Art Show

Rising Sun’s Haslett earns
Best of Show in Madison

Her talent has developed from
many years of experience

(October 2015) – Some people might say it might be a lucky coincidence that Adanna Haslett entered and won the Best of Show Award at the Madison Art Club’s 17th annual Regional Fall Art Show.

Photo by John Sheckler

Adanna Haslett of Rising Sun, Ind., recently joined  the Madison Art Club and then won Best of Show in the club’s Regional Fall Art Show.

Haslett was not a member of the Madison, Ind., group, but was discussing the club with her friends from the Southeastern Indiana Artist Guild in Aurora, Ind., when she decided to check out the Madison club.
“I had heard a lot about them and had always wanted to join the group,” said Haslett. “So I drove down to check them out. I decided to join the club as soon as I looked at all the beautiful paintings there.”
Sharon Taylor was working at the art club’s gallery, Art on Main, that day.
Haslett told Taylor she did a lot of portraits in various mediums, such as oil, acrylic, pastels and color pencils. When Taylor mentioned the contest, it was all Haslett needed to hear. She immediately filled out the membership form and drove back to her Switzerland County home to get a portrait to enter.
“When we lived in Idaho, I was a member of the Northwest Pastel Society and the Fair-Weather Art Association,” said Haslett. “I want to continue with the Madison Art Club, but since I just started I have not been able to attend meetings yet. I do plan to enter their Call for Art for the “Art of Healing” exhibit at the Seasons Café at the King’s Daughters’ Hospital.
A three-judge panel of students from the Masters of Curatorial Studies at the University of Louisville selected the winners. Judges Bailey Mazik, Jessica Oberdick and Elizabeth Smith chose 24 pieces from 155 entries for the annual exhibit at Art on Main.

Photo provided

Pat Kluesner of  Anderson, Ind., won Reserve Best of Show (second place) with this oil painting titled “Blue Pot.”

“We saw a lot of lovely different skill levels,” said Judge Elizabeth Smith. “We were excited there was such a breath of content. There were artists who had obviously worked in their medium for decades. It was good to see all that together with newer artists.”
Smith spoke of the difficulty judging new and seasoned artists in the same competition.
“We don’t prioritize someone in the field whose technique is so good,” Smith added. “We consider mastery of the medium, but also personal style and content. We look at what the artist is drawing on or trying to explore. The narrative aspect is also important, you want to know the story behind the work.”
These added aspects are what brought Haslett’s work to the top.
“This artist really hit the nail on the head with every part of her work,” said Smith. That work encompasses everything we thought was a successful work of art. The color and line reminded me of Whistler’s Mother. Her work speaks for itself.”
Haslett has been painting for more than 35 years and has experience with other art clubs and associations. She has won best media awards for pastels several times with the Southeastern Indiana Artist Guild in Aurora.  
Haslett was awarded $1,000 from the Madison Art Club for Best of Show. Reserve Best of Show and $500 went to Pat Kluesner of Anderson, Ind. There was also a $100 award for the Mayor’s Choice Award, selected by Madison Mayor Damon Welch. That award was given to Rodney Reveal of Arcadia, Ind.
There were also more than 20 awards for Best of Genre, Best of Media, Awards of Distinction and Honorable Mention. The range of awards shows the wide reach of the Madison Art Club. The entries represented 81 artists from Indiana, Kentucky and Ohio.
The judges issued a collective statement about the Show: “The Annual Regional Fall Art Show encompassed a multitude of mediums and skill levels. In addition, the pronounced attention and time that went into each work was clear, and showcased the rich talent from around the Madison area.  Collectively, we agreed that each work had merit and contributed to the overall impressive quality of the show. We would like to sincerely congratulate each participant for their hard work and commitment to the visual arts.”

The Madison Art Club is in its 66th year and is one of the oldest continuously operated art clubs in the state of Indiana. The 501c3 group operates the Art on Main Gallery and Gift Shop at 309 W. Main St. The gallery features original paintings, drawings, pottery, sculpture, woodwork, jewelry, wearable art and other unique pieces created by members. New members are welcome. Applications available online or at the Art on Main Gallery. For additional information, call the gallery at (812) 265-2923.

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