Sky Gallery Art Winners Announced


CHAMPAIGN----The Champaign County Arts Council and Adams Outdoor Advertising have announced the 2016 winners of Sky Gallery, an opportunity for artists to share their creativity and display their work on billboards.

Here is a list of the Sky Gallery winners:

EKAH, Audition, graphite on paper with digital color (pictured)

"Audition is a lighthearted piece illustrating the ideas of acceptance and rejection in the world of performance art and perhaps in all disciplines of art. I imagine how grueling and tough it must be for performance artists to get rejected on the spot and how thrilling it must be when rewarded with applause. Although once removed from a live audience, visual artists, too, can experience something similar where every piece of drawing showcased feels like an audition. With the advent of various social platforms to share one's work, the feedback is immediate. Adulations are fleeting and audiences, fickle. This piece is a reminder to myself and to those who pursue creative endeavors to focus on getting better at one's craft and not get discouraged when silence feels like rejection. There will always be another audition and another drawing."

Hua Nian, Where the Wild Things Glow, acrylic on canvas

"This painting is all about wild flowers in their flourishing state. Instead of painting them from a still life, I had to let each one grow organically from the soil of my mind, onto the almost arbitrarily painted background. In vases, and mostly outdoors in the unknown wild—these flowers are self-sufficient and glowing within, emitting their beauty in such tranquility, regardless the hint of the unsettling surroundings...”

Stacey Gross, Wabi-Sabi series: Imjingak, digital photograph

“This image is part of my ongoing "wabi-sabi" series of digital photographs.  Embracing the Japanese aesthetic, wabi-sabi, I am mindfully finding beauty in the imperfect and worn:  rust, peeling paint, broken glass.  The close cropping to remove the object's context creates a formal abstraction that is reminiscent of Aaron Siskind's style.  This particular image was shot at Imjingak Park, in the demilitarized zone separating North & South Korea.”

James Wisdom, Adoration 1, oil on canvas

“My recent work has been a surreal reflection of my cultural and sociological experiences. My art practice focuses on the invention of fantastical narratives illustrated through illusionistic images. I produce paintings, drawings, and objects that are informed through ideas about the history of painting, religious imagery, and contemporary allegorical pop-surrealism. I am specifically engrossed in languages of representation that depict politics, power, belief, and resistance.”

Preetika Rajgariah, Diaspora, watercolor on canvas

“My work explores themes of migration, diaspora, and cultural identity in the form of multilayered watercolor paintings of masses to installations that use traditional Indian textiles. For this work, I utilized varying degrees of transparency allowing me to investigate the layered result of an increasingly globalized world and the multifaceted experience of populations.”  

Judith Adanma Johnson, Loud, acrylic on board

“This body of work was inspired by African textiles and tribal music.  It is a response to reconnecting to my Nigerian heritage and reevaluating what it means to be biracial.  This piece is a direct result of working through the complexities, emotionally and otherwise, of that journey of self-discovery.”

These six artists will have their image showcased on custom 10' x 30' billboards around Champaign-Urbana. The boards will be posted the week of May 2, 2016. Search for the billboards as they rotate throughout Champaign-Urbana over the coming year. All billboard space is donated by Adams Outdoor Advertising.

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