The annual Kaatza Art Group Show and Sale wrapped up, with Karola Schabernak taking home the Eva Wilson Memorial People’s Choice Award. Visitors to the art show, which ran from May 20 to 22, cast their ballots for the piece of art they liked most.
The art was done in Chinese brush work style, which is traditionally a brush dipped in black ink or coloured pigments and involves similar techniques as calligraphy, although Schabernak was quick to point out that her work does not strictly follow the Chinese brush style.
“It’s with my own spin on it,” she said.
The piece features a kingfisher perched on the branch of a large pink rose. Schabernak said the inspiration for it came from a kingfisher that always nested in the cliffside near her mother’s property. “They’re very industrious, tough little birds,” she said.
Schabernak has been drawing and painting her whole life. She has displayed her art at the Kaatza show for the past 16 years, and said she is thrilled to receive this year’s award.
She said art is obviously very important to her but it’s not always easy to articulate that importance.
“Nature, creation, the Earth itself is the most prolific artist of all. And life, in all of its glory, its imperfection and its pain, has a moving quality of beauty,” she said. “Art can profoundly celebrate all of this, as well as what is most human within us, with a clear and constant vision of who we are, and perhaps where it is we should be going.”
In addition to her art made with watercolour, acrylics or in Japanese Sumi-e or Chinese brush work styles, Schabernak also displayed her jewelry, which included chain mail and classical hand-knotted pearls.
Jim Jenkins is a new member of the Kaatza Art Group, having just joined three weeks ago, and had 10 paintings in this weekend’s show, all acrylics on canvas. While the People’s Choice Award is given to the creator of the single piece that receives the most votes, art show organizers said that in total, for all his pieces of art, Jenkins received more votes than any other artist.
Jenkins started making art as a small child but “left it alone” for many years. About 15 years ago he got back into making art, a passion he said has always been there.
His medium of choice is acrylic on canvas, although he does make the occasional piece from acrylic on wood. He typically focuses on landscape and nature paintings, often including bears in his art.
“Bears are of great importance to me,” he said.