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News Release


Winners Announced at 2003 Artists of the Mohawk Hudson Region Exhibition Opening

Contact: Karl Luntta (518) 437-4980

ALBANY, N.Y. (July 10, 2003) -- The University Art Museum today announced the winners of the 2003 Artists of the Mohawk Hudson Region Juried Exhibition. The exhibit, founded in 1936, is one of the longest running consecutive regional art exhibits in the nation and remains the benchmark exhibition for the finest contemporary artists working within a 100-mile radius of the Capital Region.

The exhibit's Swyer Companies Best in Show honor was awarded to UAlbany graduate student Christopher Cassidy for his installation From Albany to the Adirondacks, inspired by a found library filing cabinet that once classified microfiche of newspaper archives. To create the installation, Cassidy drew survey line between his studio and a location on Snowy Mountain in the Adirondacks. He then divided the 77-mile span into 15 equidistant points, which correspond to the number of sections inside of the cabinet. Cassidy visited each location using a compass and topographical map to find the precise spot, and documented each trip by taking photographs, removing from the spot a sample of its dirt, plants, and seed. He then organized the material into the filing cabinet, which he modified to create a self-contained environment to sustain the organic information.

Other awards include the Picotte Companies Jurorís Award to JoAnn Axford for Botanical Improvisation II; the Times Union Jurorís Award to Kenneth Ragsdale for digital prints of fabricated paper titled Farmyard I, II, III, IV; the Friends of Mayor Jennings Jurorís Award to Michael Oatman for The Birds, a collage on paper mounted on a welded steel frame; and Austin & Co, Inc Jurorís Award for sculptures in chocolate, The Twelve Realms of Purity, by Jenny McShan. A full list of award winners can be found at

This yearís juror is Maura Heffner, the newly appointed director of Exhibitions and Programs at the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art in Hartford, Connecticut. She is a former assistant curator from the Whitney Museum of American Art where she held numerous positions, including coordinator of the 2000 Biennial Exhibition and project director of Mies in America. Ms. Heffner also curated Once Upon a Time: Fiction and Fantasy in Contemporary Art, recently on view at the New York State Museum. Past jurors have come from the ranks of renowned artists, museum curators and writers, including artist Edward Hopper (1936), poet John Yau (1987), Dan Cameron, a curator (1997), and artist Xu Bing (2000).

"I was able to review an enormous amount of work -- over 1,000 slides from over 220 artists -- being produced in this region by its artists," Heffner said. "It is evident that there is a very high level of artistic production and a thriving community that continually seeks higher standards for its work."

Heffnerís final juried selection from more than 225 entries includes 35 works by 17 artists. Selections include work in a variety of media and reflect the expansive range of issues and subject matter that contemporary artists are dealing with both in the Capital Region and in the larger art world.

The 17 Artists of the Mohawk Hudson Region for 2003 are JoAnn Axford (Glenmont, New York); Justin Baker (Albany, New York); Josephine Bloodgood (New Paltz, New York); Jane Bloodgood-Abrams, (Kingston, New York); David Brickman (Albany, New York); Christopher Cassidy (Albany, New York); Jeanette Fintz (Surprise, New York); Louanne Genet Getty (New Hartford, New York); Allison Hunter (Albany, New York); Carolou Kristofik (Middleburgh, New York); David E. Levine, (Red Hook, New York); Harold Lohner (Albany, New York); Jenny McShan (Latham, New York); Chris Moran (Scotia, New York); Michael Oatman (Troy, New York); Kenneth Ragsdale (Albany, New York); and Marie Triller (Albany, New York).

The 35 works will be displayed in the University Art Museum, designed by Edward Durrell Stone and a prime example of 20th century late Modernist architecture, through November 1, 2003.

Museum summer hours are Tues.--Sat., 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. For more information, call (518) 442-4035 or visit

Established in 1844 and designated a center of the State University of New York in 1962, the University at Albany's broad mission of excellence in undergraduate and graduate education, research and public service engages 17,000 diverse students in eight degree-granting schools and colleges. The University is engaged in a $500 million fundraising campaign, the most ambitious in its history, with the goal of placing it among the nation's top 30 public research universities by the end of the decade. For more information about this nationally ranked University, visit

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