2017 Howard County Department of Education Exhibit

Central Office Gallery

October 5th - November 22nd, 2017

Our juror for the show was Lesa Cook. See here comments below.

Follow this link to see a video about the show.

First Place
Karen Norman— “Gift Key”

Gift Key

Second Place
Marilyn Le May Patterson— “Moon Quake”

Moon Quake

Third Place
Chung Kang— “Birds and Field”

Birds and Field

Honorable Mentions

John Lockwood—“Cat 2”

Cat 2

Stacy Lund Levy—“Pick Me”

Pick Me

Lois Wolford—“Busy Day in Paris”

Busy Day in Paris


Comments and award selections from guest judge Lesa Cook.

The quality of the work made the decision really difficult and there were several additional pieces that I could have picked out. Lots of strong landscapes in the show and lots of examples showing of a commanding use of color, and perhaps it sounds like an excuse but comparing some of these felt like having to choose between categories at The Academy Awards—putting up a drama against a musical against a documentary for best picture.

Having said that, Karen Norman’s “Gift Key” (below) was an easy choice for the First Place award. The technical virtuosity, the color, texture, subtlety and composition all came together to make a stunning picture.

The Second Place winner was Marilyn Le May Patterson, with “Moon Quake,” (right) a beautiful abstracted landscape, lots of amazing texture and color, pattern and contrast and intrigue. This is the kind of painting I could continue to go back to over and over and see something new each time.

The Third Place went to Chung Kang’s “Birds and Field” for color harmony, depth and subtlety. The atmospheric quality of this painting, the wonderfully animated faces of the finches, the hard and soft edges.

Honorable mentions went to John Lockwood’s “Cat 2” for the mastery of texture and composition, Stacy Lund Levy’s “Pick Me” for the audacious handling of the perspective, the reflections and refractions of the cone and the expressiveness; and Lois Wolford’s “Busy Day in Paris” for the wonderful sense of light and restraint in detail.

I thought it was a wonderful show, and the things I looked for: composition, technical skill, color harmony and compelling subject matter were present in so many of them. I tried to choose pieces that went beyond those qualities and also surprised or delighted me in some way. Congratulations to everyone who participated.

Lesa Avera Cook grew up in South Carolina and received a degree in studio art from the University of South Carolina in 1987. In 1990/91 she pursued graduate work in computer graphics at George Mason University. She continued her fine art studies part-time at the Maryland Institute College of Art and The Corcoran. For 10 years she studied at The Art League in Alexandria, Virgina, under Rob Liberace, Rick Weaver and Chuck Johnson. She continues to pursue her studies and thinks of herself as a perpetual student. Her work has been shown both regionally and nationally. Currently, she resides in Burkittsville, Maryland with her husband where she paints and sculpts. She teaches at The Delaplaine Visual Arts Education Center in Frederick, MD and The Yellow Barn in Glen Echo, MD. She is a registered copyist at The National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. She considers herself a classical realist, drawing inspiration from the great masters and trying to capture not only the natural form but the emotional reality as well.