Treasurer's Report

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_000073 does not continue the article [page 23] /JUDGE'S REPORT/ - PROJECT ART SHOW #2 by G. M. Carr The first thing the judges did when the doors were locked and the curtains pulled together against the curious stares of the crowd outside was to walk around and take a good look at the pictures. There were five of us---the other four judges being Harlan Ellison, Algis Budrys, Richard Eney and Sidney @COleman@, who was one of the judges at the first Project Art Show last year and will probably be a Judge at Chicago next year inasmuch as I understand the PAS Committee intends to have one permanent Judge from year to year to give continuity to the project. I was already thoroughly familiar with the pictures because I had dropped into the display room @everych@ chance I got, despite the fact that I was tied up in the NFFF room as official hostess. I came not only to familiarize myself with the exhibit but because of the sheer pleasure I got from looking at the art. I heard several comments that the quality of the exhibit was much higher than last year, but cannot tell, having not attended the first show last year, I _do_ know that this show was good. I bought as many pictures as I could and would have liked to purchase everything for permanent exhibit at home... From their comments, the other judges had also fammiliarized themselves thoroughly with the work, so our preliminary inspection was not to see what pictures were there but to agree what category each painting should be judged in. Now, it seemed to me then, and still does, that this was not a matter that should have been left for the judges to determine. In fact, there seemed to be a surprising lack of rapport between the submitting artists and the sponsors who donated the Awards. I don't know why this breakdown of communication occurred, but it baffled the judges -- as if, say, they were trying to award a ribbon for "Biggest Dahlia" at a Flower Show where all the entries were Roses and Geraniums. And if they _did_ locate Dahlias, it was only to find Minature Pompoms. A large Dahlia is about the size of a dinner-plate; could they award it to a bloom the size of one's thumb? And yet, could they be justified in not awarding, the prize to the biggest bloom in the pint-sized bunch? The comparison may seem far-fetched and slightly ridiculous, but sometimes the judges were in the same prediciment. For example, the Award @fir@ "Best Science Fiction Illustration" sponsored by Forrest J. Ackerman---there were only two pictures which could be classified as "science fiction illustrations." Oh, there were many vaguely steffish borderline paintings, and all kinds of fantasy. But when it came to telling a _science fiction story_, there were only George Metzger's HOMECOMING (a dead pilot carried by spaceship back to an Earth he could never see), and Donal Simpson's BRENNSCHLUSS (where a falling spaceship hinted of interstellar warfare). The judges could find no other entry which justified an award for _science fiction illustration_. For that matter, the "Fellowship of the Ring" category went begging because we couldn't find enough entries to justify making an award at all. On the other hand, the "Outré Art" field was pitifully overcrowded. There were [page 24] literally dozens of pictures, of a quality that made judging extremely difficult. Strangely enough, in many cases the artists submitted so many similar entries @theat@ they competed against themselves! Take Cynthia Goldstone's @wierdies@ for example: the judges liked different pictures and would gladly have awarded a prize to each---but with so many other fine entries in @thus@ category the judges couldn't give her more than one ribbon. They managed, after much wrangling, to decide on the "ILLUSTRATED BOY" but I think the entire _group_ should have won the Red Ribbon. This lack of liason between what the artists submitted and what the judges were supposed to be judging them for was particularly noticeable in the field of "Fantasy." There were actually three kinds of "fantasy" to get awards: "Children's Fantasy," "Heroic Fantasy," and just plain, unspecified "Fantasy." The latter category covered _all_ the entries in the fantasy group (and the resultant competition was terrific!); but the other two categories were limited to specific _kinds_ of fantasy. Here again the judges were faced with the paradox of artists competing against themselves ... Barbi Johnson's lovely little illustrations from "The Enchanted Forest" were finally judged as a 'group entry' and given the prize as a unit; no one picture could be singled out as being @'better;@ than the rest ... and yet there were so few entries that only two awards were justified. Only Barbi Johnson and M. L. Meatheringham won in this category because, despite the wealth of fantasy artwork, only theirs were of high quality in the "Children's Fantasy" category. In "Heroic Fantasy" the dilemma was even greater. There was such a paucity of anything "heroic" in concept that the first---and only---prize went to a little pencil drawing. Some of the @ickest@, shiniest entries in this group got passed over in spite of their technical perfection, @becayse@ they were trite and empty of everything _except_ technical competence. "Pretty calendar art" was about the best that could be said in their behalf. In fact, I was surprised to see what a relatively unimportant place "prettiness" took in the judging. By that, I mean the insipid superficiality which is "hack" work. Many exhibits were nicely done but lacked emotional depth or meaning for the beholder. But just because some of the categories were limited to specific subjects, it did not follow that all the pictures did not get a fair, showing. Several categories covered every entry in the show---regardless of subject matter, title, or what @habe@ you. "Judges' Choice," for instance, left it up to the judges to pick out whatever they liked best, and went unanimously to ATom's colored illos. I don't know how the other judges arrived at their decision, but I thought they were just about the cutest things in the show. There wasn't any other category they @copuld@ fit into, and they certainly deserved some kind of mention! Likewise, the "Popular Award" covered every entry--- and was determined by @cotes@ from the general public. Another category wide-open--- especially to beginners---was "Most Promising" won by M. L. Meatheringham Sylvia White, and Barbi Johnson. I don't know anything at all about Meatheringham or Johnson, (for all I know they could be artists of long standing) but Sylvia White picked up her kudos with the _very first_ artwork she had ever submitted! As everybody knows, Richard Bergeron stole the show. He won more awards than anyone else, because he submitted more pictures than anyone else and because of the wide _variety_ of entries. Bergeron donated all these paintings [page 25]

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