Contemporary Forum, a support group of Phoenix Art Museum, offers two significant opportunities for artist recognition each year: the Arlene and Morton Scult Contemporary Forum Artist Award, which recognizes a mid-career Arizona artist who has demonstrated a sustained commitment to their chosen medium, continuous artistic growth, and consistent artistic production; and the Artists’ Grants, which encourage emerging contemporary artists in Arizona. The upcoming exhibition will feature a mid-career survey of the Scult Award recipient’s work, as well as work by the Artists’ Grants recipients created expressly for this exhibition.
Matt Magee, Star Map 1 and Star Map 2, 2018. Oil and graphite on panels. Courtesy of the artist.Matt Magee, Star Map 1 and Star Map 2, 2018. Oil and graphite on panels. Courtesy of the artist
The exhibition will feature work by Matt Magee, the 2017 recipient of the Arlene and Morton Scult Contemporary Forum Artist Award. This award recognizes a mid-career Arizona artist, chosen from a pool of eligible candidates. Award recipients are chosen on the basis of the following criteria:
• The artist has been working as a professional artist in Arizona for a minimum of four (4) consecutive years,
• Is presently making and exhibiting new work,
• Has demonstrated significant artistic growth over the course of their career,
• And will be chosen based on the work they are currently producing, in addition to work that they have produced in the past.
Working in painting, drawing, sculpture, and assemblage, Magee creates art that responds to earlier abstractionists but also references current scientific, ecological, and technological advancements. He is attuned to language and has dedicated entire works to a single phrase or word, creating a unique exploration of meaning in a symbolic—almost hieroglyphic—visual format. Green Standard, Magee’s 2007 tapestry-like assemblage of cut-up detergent bottles, is exemplary of the artist’s multidisciplinary approach, as it melds high formalism and social responsibility.
This exhibition will also feature work by the 2017 Artists’ Grants recipients: Laura Spalding Best, Jennifer Day, Casey Farina, and Christopher Jagmin. The Artists’ Grants foster the creation of contemporary art by encouraging emerging artists working in Arizona. From a competitive pool of applicants who respond to an annual open call, Artists’ Grants recipients are selected by a jury.
The Contemporary Forum Artists’ Grants Winners and Arlene and Morton Scult Artist Award Exhibition is organized by Phoenix Art Museum and made possible through the generosity of Arlene and Morton Scult, the Nathan Cummings Foundation, and Contemporary Forum.
From left to right: Christopher Jagmin, Laura Spalding Best, Casey Farina, Jennifer Day.
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