10 women from across the country who paint in the figurative realist style were named finalists for the inaugural Bennett Prize. I am honored to be included amongst them. The $50,000 Prize is the largest art award ever offered solely to women painters. The 10 were selected from among 647 entrants, a number that greatly surpassed expectations of 350 entries for the inaugural year. Endowed at The Pittsburgh Foundation by art collectors Steven Alan Bennett and Dr. Elaine Melotti Schmidt, this first-of-its-kind prize is designed to propel the careers of women artists.
“The response has been incredible – exceeding our best hopes – and the paintings submitted for consideration are stunning,” said Art Martin, a juror and director of collections and exhibitions at the Muskegon Museum of Art, where finalists’ works will be presented beginning May 2, 2019. The $50,000 winner will be announced at the exhibition opening. An exhibition of the finalists’ works will travel following the Muskegon Museum of Art opening. Stops in the Pennsylvania cities of Pittsburgh and Reading are planned and more venues will be added.