Sculptor Reven Marie Swanson, in her usual attire, was the Own an Original juror for the 2015 show. She creates large steel public sculptures that are exhibited across the country, as well as other smaller-scale works. This one was just shipped to Lake Oswego, Oregon.
When Littleton was building Bemis Library, there were decisions to be made about prospective gifts from the community, as well as how to plan for the art displays that were seen as an integral part of the building’s function. The Littleton Library Art Selection Committee was appointed by the city council to form policies and make decisions about art, expanding into city-wide responsibilities. It is now called the Littleton Fine Arts Board.
Among the panel’s early events was the first Own an Original exhibit at the library. It was designed to give local artists a place to exhibit their art and to offer local residents a nearby resource for buying and collecting original artworks.
On Nov. 19, the 50th annual Own an Original opened at the Littleton Museum — a considerably more sophisticated collection of works, submitted by artists throughout the metro area. A total of 305 works were submitted for jurying by 107 artists. Realist and abstract visions appear — along with points in between, such as Littleton artist Michelle Lamb’s carefully crafted sculptures of mythical animals.
Prominent Denver sculptor Reven Marie Swanson, who has public art pieces in local parks, was the 2015 juror and she selected 65 pieces by 52 artists for the exhibit. (Curator Teri White said 48 new artists entered this year’s competition.) There are more three-dimensional works than in previous years, which gives the exhibit a lively appearance.
The Best of Show award winner is in fact one of those three-dimensional pieces. It’s an airy-looking mixed media mobile called “Shifts in the Wind” by Mattie O, who was not able to attend the opening reception. She also had her “Zen Mobile” included in the show. Both float above viewers and dance in the air as they walk through the gallery.
First place winner was Heidi Rounds for a remarkable drawing called “Pull.” The man’s eyes follow one around the gallery. Second place went to Tomiko Takeda of Highlands Ranch for her oil painting, “Shadows — Reflections of Life” (she was top award winner in Lone Tree’s recent Art Expo). Robert Gray, also from Highlands Ranch, won third place with his brightly colored acrylic image of a fly fisherman, “The Cast.”
The juror also exhibits a trio of butterfly mobiles created in cast glass and steel, which deliver an environmentalist’s message to the world. (Near the gallery entrance.)