Jessica Worthey receives an Honorable Mention Commendation in the Whitaker Foundation Fall 2018 Art History Scholarship program

Jessica Worthey, a student at Tarrant County College, was awarded an Honorable Mention commendation for her essay in the Whitaker Foundation Art History Fall 2018 Scholarship Program. Her hometown is Fort Worth, Texas. The essay writer was asked to describe the differences in the way watercolor artists Frederic Whitaker and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker approached architecture.

The two watercolors used as examples in the essay question were Frederic’ Whitaker’s Baroque Façade, 1968 and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker’s Horton Plaza, 1980s.

Her essay: 

Frederic and Eileen Whitaker are both accomplished representational watercolorists, especially with their works with architecture. Though both worked with architectural subjects, each artist possesses a vastly different style of rendering and defining these constructs from one another.

To begin, Frederic Whitaker’s Baroque Façade possesses a more classical approach when it comes to depicting architecture in Fine Art. The artist excels at interpreting the finest details that supply the work superb dimension, truly defining the most intricate and defining features that give life to something most people find rigid and stale. The richness of the colors used, especially so with the deep dusty blue sky that lifts the foreground into focus, grab the viewer’s attention and pull them in into discovering all of the ornate details the building has to offer. The brightness of the tree in the very front also aids in this focusing of the building as well, as it helps to alleviate the overwhelming presence the building could have as it takes up the majority of the piece, and also works to center and solidify the position of the façade itself as one in between the two rich colors.

One detail in particular that caught my eye, as it most likely did to others as well, was the subtle hint of blue in the concave cavity of the rose window and the dark blue the window holds itself. This pop of color led me to other features around the window: the deep green shadows surrounding the sun-like disk feature, leading my eye up and around to the hints of bright green defining where the sculptures defined themselves from the cornice-like structure of the façade, and eventually to the top where the flat of the building was colored with earthy red hues, which caught my attention by being complimentary to the greens I had just seen. All of these pops of color are appealing to viewers, as buildings do not inherently bear these hues and can be seen, as I mentioned before, as stale. These subtleties in the change of color in which Frederic Whitaker defined the building’s façade of complex Baroque architecture is still realistic and gives the work as a whole a stated presence to the viewer, all while being stylistic to Whitaker’s tastes and appeal.

The Baroque style is known for its dramatic presence in the art world, especially present in the variety and stark contrasts with lights and shadows. This intensity is not lost with Whitaker’s rendition and it is clear the artist wanted to keep true to the original craftsmanship of the building, and he did so by vividly enhancing the many defining features, especially so in the main focus of Baroque Façade, including the tympanum, the rose window, and ornate sculptures that lie above the main portal into the building. Whitaker aimed to enhance the beauty that was already present, rather than morphing the subject into an artificial spectacle.

While Frederic Whitaker’s depiction of architecture is based on staying true to the composition of said architecture while making the subject more appealing to viewers, Eileen Whitaker’s approach to the same subject is much more stylized and even abstract.

In her piece Horton Plaza, Eileen disassociates the façade of the building with all other architectural and infrastructural features that may surround it. The building is only encompassed by fading and blended patches of color: a light blue wash above the top, possibly implying the presence of the sky, and light earthy red washes along the right, left, and below the building, most likely suggesting the presence of other buildings and terrain. Even so, there is little sense of solid space, as the wall depicted has no defined edges on the bottom or on either side, essentially freeing the wall of feeling stagnant or solid, characteristics that are typically associated with architecture. Earthy brown colors are used for the interior past the arches which exude feelings of warmth and security, which contrasts the vibrant and dark exterior that can be interpreted colder which pushes the structure out and suggests a feeling of space. Even with the prominent placement of the street lamp in the foreground, the lamp trails off to fade away at the same place the building does, so while the lamp gives the viewer a sense of where the building is placed in space, it is not concrete. Due to the way the artist created the wall, which can be described as free-willed and fluid, the subject becomes organic in a way that allows more human interpretations, such as feelings and emotions, to the work.

In this way, Horton Plaza is personable and lively in a way the actual structure cannot be. The use of colors is tactical, as Whitaker only uses very few varieties, including black, yellow, brown, red, and blue. With the limited use of colors, the expectation for the outcome of the piece would be one that is, again, stale. The ways she manipulated the watercolors is what gives her artwork life; the ill-structured and fading strokes of watercolor coupled with the sporadic lines of splashed paint across and around the subject give so much character to the already nontraditionally painted building. Through her methods, it is assumed that the feelings produced by the architecture, such as excitement and warmth, were experienced at the actual site and reproduced into the work presented. Horton Plaza is almost ethereal in this way, almost as if it is otherworldly because of the fluidity and personified character she granted to the work. The way Eileen Whitaker depicts her architectural subjects is exciting, carefree, and abstract in that she does not let the typical structural norms that come along with architecture define or take over her work.

Hailey Thrasher receives Honorable Mention for her essay in the Whitaker Foundation Fall 2018 Scholarship program

Hailey Thrasher, a student at Jacksonville University, was awarded an Honorable Mention commendation for her essay in the Whitaker Foundation Art History Fall 2018 Scholarship Program. Her hometown is Anderson, South Carolina. The essay writer was asked to describe the differences in the way watercolor artists Frederic Whitaker and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker approached architecture.

The two watercolors used as examples in the essay question were Frederic Whitaker’s Baroque Façade, 1968 and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker’s Horton Plaza, 1980s.

Her essay: 

Each artist carves out a certain style for himself over the course of his career that makes his paintings wholly unique. His body of work takes on a distinguishable and iconic style, much the same way that handwriting is entirely unique to every individual. Frederic Whitaker and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker were both known for their paintings of architecture. However, they each approached this subject matter in very different ways.

 

In “Baroque Facade,” Frederic Whitaker takes a very calculated, formalized approach. His color palette is limited, relying mostly on shades of gray, brown, or blue to define his surfaces. He builds his colors slowly, layer upon layer–starting barely more than transparent and gradually building more pigment into the painting. However, through his many layers of watercolor, Frederic Whitaker never loses the hallmark lumosity of the medium.

 

This is indicative of many hours spent honing his skills and knowledge as an artist. Further evidence of his background as an artist is found in his linework. His lines are extremely crisp, and, if one looks closely, one can even make out the faint markings of his linework underneath the watercolors.

 

“Baroque Facade” is a highly detailed, tonal study of light and shadow. With this light and shadow he depicts depth. The viewer is able to distinguish foreground from background. In this space, Frederic Whitaker seems to inject a somber reverence, as if all life ceases simply to worship this structure. Frederic Whitaker takes great care to preserve every painstaking detail of the architecture. Every acanthus leaf, filigree, projection, and recession is captured.

 

The building is large and takes up most of the paper, save for a small tree in front. His choice to make the architecture this prodigious commands respect from the viewer as well. Furthermore, the sky in the background is quite dark and verges on being ominous. This adds not only a unifying theme of color to the piece, but also another indication that this building is larger and more prestigious than human life.

 

Eileen Monaghan Whitaker’s approach in “Horton Plaza” is vastly different. Her piece is less structured, but no less thoughtful. Where her husband studied light and shadow, she examines color and the voice it gives to a painting. She makes her entire painting with mostly primary colors. One can make out her wild uses of cerulean, crimson, and a golden rust. Her vibrant colors bleed together, as do her foreground and background. In her wet-on-wet technique, the viewer discovers a mottling of the aforementioned colors. Dribbles of red, blue, and rust cover the paper in implied lines. She directs the viewer in diagonals across the page, stopping at areas of light and human life. These implied lines suggest movement or activity.

 

Her colors are not the only vibrant part of her painting–so is the atmosphere. Where “Baroque Facade” is devoid of the human form, “Horton Plaza” is teeming with life. One can make out the delicate human forms carefully perched under the archways.

 

Unlike her husband, she places much more importance on the human forms, rather than the structure itself. Her architecture is unhinged from the rest of the work. It floats in the middle of the page with only her abstract splashes of color and a small lamppost to consume the negative space. Her loose brushstrokes imply her painting was conducted hurriedly, as if to preserve a quickly passing moment in history.

 

Frederic Whitaker commands respect, whereas Eileen Monaghan Whitaker invites the viewer to indulge in the great contrast of colors and take in the life that is happening around.

 

“Horton Plaza” is a celebration of the brevity and fullness that is human life.In Frederic Whitaker’s “Baroque Facade” and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker’s “Horton Plaza,” both artists approach architecture as a subject matter. Both artists also use their academic backgrounds to skillfully carry out these paintings.

 

Frederic Whitaker applies his knowledge and skill to carefully depicting the captivating light and shadow and quiet awe for the structure.

 

On the other hand, Eileen Monaghan Whitaker uses her hours of practice and skill to study the deep connection between color and the range of human emotion. She makes full use of her palette with a loose brush to indicate a rushed enthusiasm, as if she is capturing a setting sun.

 

Each artist went to great lengths to push the boundaries of his or her work. Decades later, one is still able to discern the defining characteristics that set Frederic Whitaker’s “Baroque Facade” apart from Eileen Monaghan Whitaker’s “Horton Plaza” as simply and easily as if one was comparing handwriting.

Logan Magee receives Honorable Mention for Whitaker Art Foundation 2018 Fall Scholarship program

Logan Magee, a student at The New School, has received an Honorable Mention Commendation from the Frederic Whitaker and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker Fine Art Scholarship program for her watercolors, Celestial Body 1 and Celestial Body 2. Logan, whose hometown is New Orleans, Louisiana won a $2,000 Whitaker Foundation scholarship in 2017.

In her artist statement she wrote:  

Celestial Body 2, 2017, 8″x10″, watercolor, Logan Magee

This past school year was my first year in college, at The New School, to study at Parsons School of Design and Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts. Upon moving to a new city, a new school, with new people, I promised myself to stay true to myself during a time of immense change. While being handed stacks of projects every week, in each assignment I made an effort to find some truth about my own art, or rather, to learn a new way to design my truth.

Second semester, after dealing with issues sourcing from homelife, I began exploring my emotions and my body in a way that I felt I could universalize for others to relate to. I am a highly empathic being. When I think of the emotional content I discuss in my work, I’m inadvertently made to understand that others experience some of the same feelings. When I think of visual motifs I use, I know that others will see a piece of themselves reflected in it in some way. Therefore, anytime I search for an answer to something in myself, I also feel that I gain an understanding of how other people work.

What I explore in my art is questions of being. Recently, I have produced multiple pieces on the concept of space, and whose bodies are allowed to take up space. This idea spurned from my own experiences in going to art college, in which I was often the only person of color or black student in my classes. I felt that my presence in the class was exemplary of the little space given to black people both in higher education and in the art world. I felt small. Throughout the year, I thought about how systematically, some bodies are not given the same amount of space, either socially or physically, as other bodies. In the pieces submitted for the Whitaker and Monaghan scholarship, I explored this concept of space in regard to feminine bodies.

I explored this idea through the lens of fashion, and how fashion advertisements tend to make women look smaller. Not only that, but the women shown are usually white, cisgendered, and skinny. To subvert this gender hegemony, I produced two watercolor images of femme-identifying people of color, in poses that are open and wide compared to the restraining poses women are usually displayed in. I also had both models wear puffer jackets, which are articles of clothing that are non-gender specific and consume a large amount of space. I felt that the puffer jacket was the perfect clothing item to serve as the antithesis for the limited space given to mainstream models.

In the future, I would like to continue to explore space as a social construct. I would also like to create more works about emotion and physical state, within myself and larger populations. Being in New York has allowed me to delve into these concepts in an expansive environment, and I believe being in the city has benefitted me overall. Receiving the Whitaker and Monaghan scholarship would be extremely helpful to my staying in the city, as I am no longer receiving financial help from my father, and would not like to burden my mother with extra costs. I was fortunate enough to receive the award last year, and it greatly supported my school project expenditure, as well as books and supplies. For that, I am deeply grateful, and give many thanks to the Foundation for being a big part of my first year in college.

Lauren Taylor Coney receives Honorable Mention in Whitaker Foundation Fall 2018 Fine Art Scholarship Program

Lauren Taylor Coney, a student at Ringling College of Art and Design, received an Honorable Mention Commendation from the Frederic Whitaker and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker Fine Art Scholarship program for her watercolor, Tea House. Her hometown is Newburgh, Indiana.  In her artist statement she wrote: 

Lauren Taylor Coney watercolor Tea House 2017

Tea House, 2017, 8.5″x11″, Lauren Taylor Coney

I attend Ringling College of Art and Design in hopes that I will be able to succeed in my dreams of being a professional artist one day. It has always been my dream to do so and I haven’t slowed down in my studies and experimentation yet. Not only do I spend from 8:30 a.m.to usually around 2:30 a.m. working on nothing but improving in my artwork, but I also am a Student Ambassador and work events for my school for 2 years now as well as a club leader for 2 years who works and manages everything for a non-profit project I do for the Lazarus Program called the Veteran’s Portrait Project. During this project, we do portraits of local veteran’s in the Fall and then in the Spring semester, we hang them in a gallery show called the “Art of Bravery” show on Veteran’s Day and afterwards, donate the portraits to the veteran’s themselves.

I also was an Orientation leader last year and won the “Outstanding Leaders Award” given out by my school. I am also apart of my school’s student government and work about 8 hours or more a week in our school’s woodshop. I work very hard to be towards the top of my classes and have a very well standing in my school with the students and teachers.I of course do other things besides art, like sightseeing and spending time with friends, but there’s not a time when I’m not thinking about art or being inspired. Even in high school, even though mine did not have specific focuses like some, I took almost every art class my school had to offer and was involved in every art-related activity I could find. Rather it be my high school’s theatre productions that I helped manage backstage for, creating the tickets for the productions, or even just painting simple posters to announce upcoming spirit days, I had to be apart of them.

My dream is to one day be featured on the cover of a New Yorker, but what artist’s isn’t? I lean more towards graphic design and picture books rather than anything else, but I really enjoy a beautiful day out landscape painting, because what is more inspiring that the world around you?

My dream job would probably either be working for the company Illumination (who created movies like Despicable Me, Minions, Life of Pets, etc.) or freelancing for magazines because it’s always the illustration that prompts me to read an article or not and if it’s a popular magazine, my art will be showed to thousands. I also would like to come out with a children’s book one day and have it be some child’s favorite that they always keep for later on when they can read it to their own kids because I still have mine that I’m saving and I just find that to be so special, and I want to give that special experience to someone like the artists that I have gave to me.

I have a lot of high hopes and dreams, but they all have one thing in common and that’s art. I can’t see myself ever doing anything else unless it involves art. It’s been my passion ever since I can remember and I don’t see myself loving anything else as much as I do art.

Kimberley Zak receives Honorable Mention for Whitaker Foundation Fall 2018 Fine Art Scholarship

Kimberley M. Zak, a student at Boston University, has received an Honorable Mention Commendation from the received an Honorable Mention Commendation from the Frederic Whitaker and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker Fine Art Scholarship program for her watercolor, Don’t Itch

Don’t Itch, 2018, 12″x16″, watercolor by Kimberley Zak

Zak, whose hometown is Ranchos Palos Verde, California, is pursuing a dual degree in painting and psychology.

Her artist statement: As a student pursuing a dual degree in painting and psychology, I am deeply interested in the intersection between these two worlds—worlds that seem quite separate from one another at first glance but are, in reality and by nature, intricately connected. I believe that painting—particularly portraiture and figure painting—provides an incredible and unique avenue by which to explore the relationship between art and psychology; painting allows us to understand each other as people and, ultimately, uncover the human condition.

One of my primary goals as an artist is to create work that reflects the human experience and encourages self-reflection. Whether through examinations of physical existence, abstractions of mentality, or explorations of the intrapersonal journey, I strive to engage both the viewer and the artist—myself—in a connective and often metacognitive conversation about our experiences as people.The intrapersonal aspects I experience when creating a painting make the private process just as important to me—if not more so—as the final product.

In this sense, I am also deeply interested in creating work that reflects the process in such a way that the viewer can interact with and understand a painting as more than just the final product with which they are more typically acquainted. In addition, I constantly find myself grappling with the question of whether or not art must be conceptually accessible for people other than the artist; by searching for ways to expose the process to the viewer, I am continuing the conversation with the viewer and, in a way, with myself about accessibility and the psychological themes that intrigue me.For me, psychology is also profoundly intertwined with art history, and my studies in psychology and painting have augmented my fascination with history.

Studying art history and applying that education to our work as artists enables us to create relevant, meaningful, and impactful art. My work frequently draws inspiration from moments and concepts which I have discovered through my explorations of art history. This influence, though sometimes explicit, is often rather subtle and undetectable; its nature is sometimes deliberate and sometimes subconscious. It is through instances such as these that I find that the interconnection between art and psychology approaches interdependence.

In my academic career and beyond, I am aiming to enrich my experiences and my relationship with the world around me through art, psychology, and art history. I have been incredibly fortunate to cultivate my perspectives and ambitions in Venice, Italy, where I studied painting and art history for four months during my sophomore year. This extraordinary opportunity not only compelled me to challenge myself as an artist and as an individual, but also afforded me the tremendous privilege of broadening my understanding of art and art history—and, furthermore, the undeniable relationship that connects me as a growing artist in the twenty-first century to artists throughout history.

This global experience has informed my perception of art as it exists among and interacts with society, giving me a more multifaceted mindset with which to approach my studies as I prepare for life beyond university.Because I am earning two degrees in just four years, my course load is always full beyond capacity, and as a result I must take several classes each summer in order to complete both degree programs on time. The costs of these courses, naturally, are an added expense to college tuition such that my options as to where I can take these summer classes are somewhat limited based on what my family can currently afford. This scholarship would aid me and my family by supplementing some of the costs of my regular tuition, thus expanding the possibility for me to take the courses I need to next summer to graduate within four years.

As I enter the final half of my academic career and approach the next chapter of my life, I find myself daunted by the prospect of choosing between a career in art history and that in psychology. However, as I have experienced more of the world and grown as a result of my studies and explorations, I have come to the realization that these options are not necessarily mutually exclusive. I believe that these worlds are not merely related: they are inseparable. Whether as a future artist, psychologist, or art historian, I will continue to search for ways in which to build upon and vitalize the relationships I am exploring between these fields.

 

Brendan Kenny – Winner of Fall 2018 Art History Scholarship

BRENDAN KENNY, who is majoring in fibers at Massachusetts College of Art and Design, has been awarded a $2,000 Art History scholarship from the Frederic and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker Foundation. His essay describing the differences in the way the two renowned watercolor artists approached architecture was the winning entry in the Foundation’s Fall 2018 Art HIstory scholarship competition. Upon completing his education, the student from Malden, Massachusetts wants to work in a gallery or museum setting, either in restoration or curation.

“My interest in curation started my freshman year when I showed in a gallery for the first time, it lit a fire in me that I know I need to kindle,” he said.

He has curated two shows so far during his undergraduate career including one with another student. While their works were in different areas of study, they overlapped seamlessly. What made the show special he said was the learning aspect it held. “I taught her how to weave, and she taught me every program in the Adobe Suite.” 

The two watercolors used as examples in the essay question were Frederic’ Whitaker’s Baroque Façade, 1968 and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker’s Horton Plaza, 1980s.

Kenny’s winning essay is attached.

 

 

 

ESSAY:

Frederic Whitaker’s “Baroque Facade” displays a deep understanding of color, in regards to space and architecture. Namely, what I am looking at is his use of color throughout the piece; specifically his use of gray, or lack of the use of gray. In an almost expressionist manner, he chooses color as shadow, rather than blocking it out in a gray or almost-black color— which as we know, shadow is not truly gray.      

In a similar way, gray is not really present throughout the piece, even in the top portion, in what appears to be a stormy sky, the tones are a sort-of green-blue color, rather than a full on gray. In this way, the painting almost mirrors the ideals of the Baroque period— by using layers of colors mixing together, rather than a flat tone, Whitaker plays into the richness, the drama of the era’s paintings and architecture. In seeing the painting, the viewer can almost feel the theatrics of the original builders of the facade; almost as if erecting the structure was a performance in itself— like painting plein air is a performance, as I am assuming Whitaker did.      

In every detail of the facade, the viewer can see Whitaker’s delicate, yet imposing hand— he clearly had an in depth understanding of not only the structure but also of the materials he was using. Watercolor can be a difficult medium, because of it’s transparent, granulating and staining properties, creating such a detailed piece, at the size it is is a huge feat. From the view that I am seeing the photo of the work, there are no real places that I can see the pigment settle into the teeth of the paper, nor are their visible unintentional transparency or stained areas that are taking me out of viewing the painting as a whole.      

That being said, there is a solid quality in the painting, the parts that are meant to be the actual stone facade of the building feel very grounded. The pigment is applied very opaquely, which allows me to see it as a hard, cold piece of stucco, while the looseness and transparency of the shadowy areas confirm that idea of the solidified areas being stucco. Particularly, in the lower left region of the painting, near the tree, the shaded areas read almost as liquid pouring into the space— the same argument could be made for light itself: that light can be viewed as a liquid, spilling out over confines of curtains, trees, walls.      

It is in the little details, the curves of the faces of the grotesques, the shadows that fall in between the pillars, around the vines and leaves that wrap themselves around those pillars; in the colors, not grays, but blues and chocolate browns that lend themselves to the shadows that make me believe Whitaker understood the drama of the baroque. It is in these details that bring me to where he stood painting this— that transform a piece of cold press paper into a snapshot of one of the most theatrical time periods for art and architecture.      

In Monaghan Whitaker’s painting of Horton Plaza, we see a different kind of curvaceous, ornate architecture. Her paintings, as a whole body of work, are more exuberant and gestural than Frederic Whitaker’s. While his, in my opinion capture a more “realistic” physical understanding of the space around him, Monaghan Whitaker’s gather up the energy of the space she paints. Even her color palette suggests that she is moved by a feeling rather than a physicality. Even though Horton Square is supremely colorful, you would not find that ochre or that light red-orange shade present in the San Diego architecture.      

In looking at the Horton Plaza painting, even though I have never been there, I feel like I understand the culture of the area— the exuberance, the joy of it. Namely, I am looking at the color splotches near the lamp and above the round windows, the flashes of clarity that are present there. Amidst the chaos of the plaza, the fast -paced movement of it all, there are those spots that my eyes linger on, that slow down the break-neck speed at which it feels Horton Plaza exists in.      

The gestural qualities of Monaghan’s work suggests that she came to paint from an emotional place— rather than her husband’s careful lines and curated color palette, she painted what she felt, neither is more or less effective than the other though, each has a unique perspective that makes their work so impressionable, so great.

STUDENT STATEMENT: 

In my personal work, I focus on the body and mind— ephemeral moments captured and portrayed through particularly time based work. In particular, weaving has been instrumental in my practices since the beginning of my undergraduate career, as well as other fiber and sculptural techniques: crochet, embroidery, even welding and woodworking have become apart of my studio practices.

Over the course of four semesters at Massachusetts College of Art and Design, I have shown in almost ten shows, two of which I have curated, one being a collection of work from the freshman class my first year, the second being a exhibition of myself and a friend’s work that although in two different areas of study and bodies of work overlapped seamlessly. Part of what made that show so special was the learning aspect it held— I taught her how to weave, and she taught me every program in the Adobe Suite.

Long-term, I hope to finish my undergraduate studies at MassArt and go to graduate school, either Boston or go to New York, Pratt or Cooper Union; I have even looked into the material studies program at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. I know that my undergraduate schooling will not totally fulfill me and I need to pursue some kind of masters program. After my time in school, I would like to work in a gallery or museum setting, either in restoration or curation.

I believe my interest in curation started my freshman year when I showed in a gallery for the first time, it lit a fire in me that I know I need to kindle. In regards to extracurriculars, I have been presenting for faculty during working groups and retreats on the systems of critique that we are presented with during undergrad, how these processes perpetuate systems of oppression present in every collegiate environment in America.

I am also on student government, as a representative for my department and in the fall semester, I am an orientation leader. I strive to improve the student experience at MassArt, so that in the future our institution will be an equitable, safe environment for all students— I hope it will be a place that continues to foster young artists’ abilities and provide a space where they can flourish and begin long careers as artists, activists and makers.

Financially, my family is in the middle class— as huge as it is. My mother works two jobs, as a nurse in pre-admission testing, and teaching in a clinical program for nursing students. My father is the facilities manager at a bank and works extra jobs doing home improvement and construction on the side. They work forty or more hours every week, but wanted my brothers and I to have the best education possible, so they sent us to a private school, which was no easy feat— then my two older brothers’ college careers overlapped, so they had two in college at the same time, while I finished at a private high school. They have given everything to my brothers and I but we are still struggling, and as I am moving out to an apartment this fall, I will be taking on three jobs to make rent.

Any money I can get is a great help. Art supplies, namely yarn and materials for weaving are upwards $30 a piece, and at the scale I hope to work at, I do not know how possible it will be for me to continue with what I have.

 

 

 

Winner of Fall 2018 Fine Art Scholarship Dawn LeAnne Taylor

Dawn-LeAnne-Taylor

Dawn LeAnne Taylor won a $2,000 Fine Art Scholarship from the Eileen Monaghan and Frederic Whitaker Foundation.

Dawn LeAnne Taylor , a student at the Academy of Art University, has been awarded a $2,000
Fine Art Scholarship from the Frederic Whitaker and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker Foundation.
Jurors were impressed with the depth of her skill and her understanding of the watercolor
medium as shown in her watercolor Royal  Jelly, 2017. They felt the Whitaker Fine Art
Scholarship would assist her with her further development as a watercolor artist as she
transfers to University of the Arts London this fall.

The Whitakers were two renowned watercolor artists. The Art Scholarship program was
established to aid art students on their career path and give the winners not only a financial but
also a competitive edge.

Royal-Jelly

Royal Jelly 30×40-inch watercolor by Dawn LeAnne Taylor 2017

Taylor, whose hometown is Nephi, Utah, explained her motivation in her artist statement. “I
don’t know where they come from these wisps of inspiration, but I do know better than to turn
them away. The key is to coax them out gently, you don’t want to scare the magic away. Pen,
pencil, chalk whatever I can find and paper after sheet of paper, I am working it out. Sometimes
I get stuck and must find myself on a silent walk to get the magic back. But eventually it starts to
take shape. Hours pass and there it is. Suddenly this moment of realization, my favorite
moment, I have given my persistent ghost a shape, a body and it’s alive.”

“I want to be better and do better cultivating my inspirational ghosts. Push myself to places I
haven’t yet realized. I want to grow. To soak everything in and apply it to my work. I want to be
the best I can be. Therefore, I am pursuing a BA in Fine Art. To further propel my work and my
career as an Artist. A path that I intend will eventually take lead me to a doctorate.“
“While historically I have been working in acrylic, ink and graphite, I have fallen fast and hard for
pigments and how they beautifully express themselves in watercolor. As I am embarking on
finishing my education in London I am thrilled to explore my new surroundings with my pans and
brushes in hand.”

STUDENT STATEMENT

It’s 2:38 am awoken to an image, a feeling. An intangible thing I can almost taste. I try my best to scribble it all out before succumbing to my dreary self. It’s this unpinable thing that follows me around the next morning. Like a ghost it’s shadowy silhouette lurks around. It wants me to tease it out. To uproot it for all to see. I feel like a detective on an exploration of discovery. I don’t know where they come from these wisps of inspiration, but I do know better than to turn them away. The key is to coax them out gently, you don’t want to scare the magic away. Pen, pencil, chalk whatever I can find and paper after sheet of paper, I am working it out. Sometimes I get stuck and must find myself on a silent walk to get the magic back. But eventually it starts to take shape. Hours pass and there it is. Suddenly this moment of realization, my favorite moment, I have given my persistent ghost a shape, a body and it’s alive. I want to be better and do better cultivating my inspirational ghosts. Push myself to places I haven’t yet realized. I want to grow. To soak everything in and apply it to my work. I want to be the best I can be. Therefore, I am pursuing a BA in Fine Art. To further propel my work and my career as an Artist. A path that I intend will eventually take lead me to a doctorate.. While historically I have been working in acrylic, ink and graphite, I have fallen fast and hard for pigments and how they beautifully express themselves in watercolor. As I am embarking on finishing my education in London I am thrilled to explore my new surroundings with my pans and brushes in hand. Outside of my long-standing love affair with art I have another that my heart burns for, Science. Having spent years trying to develop a marriage between the two. It is clear I have found that harmony in watercolors. My only regret is that I didn’t find it sooner. While I don’t know where the future will take me, along with a studio practice, I can happily see myself working in a museum setting or conservation. The Art of repairing and restoring old paintings is a valent cause I would be honored to be apart of.I have shown regularly in Salt Lake City through the past 5 years. Winning some grants along the way. I have been hired to produce art for everything from paintings for political campaigns to pastel work for the Utah Opera. Locally In my small town I have served on the Fine Arts Council, successfully bringing a chalk festival to our community. As well as volunteering my time at the local charter school giving kids k-8 lessons and access to art.As an Adult student with a family and more financial responsibility than those just starting out. This scholarship would tremendously help my stretch my school budget. I appreciate the opportunity to apply and thank you for your consideration.

2018 Fall Whitaker Fine Art Scholarship Winner Jeramiah Winston

Jeramiah-Winston

Stanford University student Jeramiah Winston won a $2000 scholarship from the Frederic and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker Foundation.

Jeremiah Winston, a Stanford University student who switched from pre-med to fine art, has been awarded a $2,000 Fine Art scholarship from the Frederic Whitaker and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker Foundation. His watercolors “Love in Snow” and “Woman in White” impressed the jurors with the depth of his skill and his understanding of the watercolor medium. They felt the Whitaker Fine Art Scholarship would help him with his further development as a watercolor artist.

The Whitakers were two renowned watercolor artists. The Art Scholarship program was established to aid art students on their career path and give the winners not only a financial but also a competitive edge.

Winston, whose hometown is Inglewood, California, explains the reasons he switched majors in his artist statement. “When I switched from Pre-Med to Fine Art my freshmen year of college, I received more than a few strange looks. “Why,” my STEM-focused peers would ask, incredulous, “would you trade such a high paying career path for art?”

“My parents, albeit more passionately, asked me the same thing. And while money is certainly a concern, it is not what drives me forward. In premed, my studies of the human form were extensive, but, in a way, mechanical, almost routine. It felt stagnant. But the more I found myself studying the various forms of the body- particularly the face- the more I found myself enthralled by the body, taken in by their forms.”

“I wanted to do more than study with them- I wanted to interact with them. I wanted to represent their forms. Eventually, this evolved into a desire to create my own forms. My honors art major is an attempt to do both In my studies, I strove to master the art of capturing the world both how it is and how I see it.”

Love-in-Snow

Love in Snow 11×17 inch watercolor by Jeramiah Winston 2017

 

Woman-in-White

Woman in White 11×17 inch watercolor by Jeramiah Winston 2018

STUDENT STATEMENT

When I switched from Pre-Med to Fine Art my freshmen year of college, I received more than a few strange looks. “Why,” my STEM-focused peers would ask, incredulous, “would you trade such a high paying career path for art?” My parents, albeit more passionately, asked me the same thing. And while money is certainly a concern, it is not what drives me forward.

In premed, my studies of the human form were extensive, but, in a way, mechanical, almost routine. It felt stagnant. But the more I found myself studying the various forms of the body- particularly the face- the more I found myself enthralled by the body, taken in by their forms. I wanted to do more than study with them- I wanted to interact with them. I wanted to represent their forms.

Eventually, this evolved into a desire to create my own forms. My honors art major is an attempt to do both In my studies, I have strove to master the art of capturing the world both how it is and how I see it. This journey has taught me through the fine arts of painting and drawing and I hope to, before I graduate, use these abilities to put on an art show of my own, to show my art to the wider world.

Unfortunately, Stanford is not a school that has fully integrated for arts. Unlike other classes at Stanford, one must pay an $100 course fee for most art classes they take. In addition, as a student, I am responsible for buying my own materials. As a student who is paying for their own tuition, this is an unfortunate financial burden (this is partially why I took up water color as it is more inexpensive).

To supplement this, I have taken up different art jobs around campus for different student groups and campus organizations. This has proven to be a wonderfully opportunity to both practice my skills and expand my art from my own interests to helping others in my community. Unfortunately, it has not been entirely enough to cover this increased costs.

After University, I hope to use my art skills in two directions. The first is that I wish to delve into the world of fine art, showing my art to a wide audience. Moreover, I wish to use my art to create art for misc. entertainment like Magazine covers, playing cards, and things of the like. In this way, I hope to be able to both continue my artistic passion and use my abilities to aid others.

This scholarship would help me immensely in my journey towards these goals.Thank you for your consideration.

Joelle Thompson – Spring 2018 Scholarship Winner

Meet Joelle Thompson, a senior at Columbia College, who is majoring in Painting & Drawing, with an emphasis in watercolor. We would like to congratulate Ms. Thompson on being selected as one of three recipients of our Frederic Whitaker and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker Foundation Scholarships for the Spring 2018 term. You can see her artwork and artist statement below.

Blazing Star, 2017, 30″ x 40,” watercolor  © Joelle Thompson

Mountain Mint, 2017, 4′ x 4,’ watercolor  © Joelle Thompson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist statement:

I am a Senior at Columbia College of Columbia, Missouri, graduating in May 2018 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting & Drawing, and minors in Education and Art History. After the BFA, I will stay on at Columbia College in an accelerated Masters in the Arts of Teaching program with certifications in Art and Spanish Education. I plan to graduate with my Masters in July or August 2019. With these degrees, I want to educate the next generation and exhibit my work, while promoting intercultural, interdisciplinary, eco-friendly practices. In my time at Columbia College I have been a member of Kappa Delta Pi and Alpha Chi honor societies, a Sustainability Committee member, and a Study Abroad Ambassador. I have exhibited work in the Boone County Art Show, Columbia Art League (CAL), the University of Missouri, and Columbia College; I have also volunteered with CAL’s annual Art in the Park.

Fall of 2014, I never imagined my journey toward a BFA would lead me toward a solo watercolor exhibition. I enjoyed too many other media and found it difficult to focus on one, even in class. Watercolor was the last thing on my mind; my small, liberal arts college eliminated watercolor classes due to low demand.

Yet, last semester, as I struggled to find my voice in oil paints and gouache for my BFA review, my professors suggested I select one medium that spoke to me best. As I reflected, I was carried back to my high school years, to the projects I made in my studio classes. Watercolor felt the most intuitive to me. It was so well-suited to the expressive, organic demands of my subject matter (Native Missouri wildflowers that benefit pollinators). I was surprised—the professors allowed me to pursue it as my medium of choice.

After spring semester, I was fortunate to spend the summer in Peru and Ecuador. In Ecuador, especially, I found inspiration. I volunteered at a home for vulnerable young women, lived with them and painted their portraits. Another volunteer introduced me to a well-known Bolivian watercolorist, José Rodríguez Sánchez, whose exhibition showed me that watercolor can be large scale and take front stage. South American watercolors awed me with their immediacy and blending of human identity with the land.

Over the past semester I have hiked, researched, and grown natives to find inspiration. My style is delicate and reflects the fragile nature of the flowers I paint, and my palette of non-toxic, mostly earth-based pigments captures a softness and care I wish to convey to my viewer. I want to make the wildflowers that our pollinators depend on approachable, inviting, worthy of space.

 

Carolyn Nordengren – Spring 2018 Scholarship Winner

Meet Carolyn Nordengren, a junior at the University of Missouri, Kansas City, who is majoring in Art History. We would like to congratulate Ms. Nordengren on being selected as one of three recipients of our Frederic Whitaker and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker Foundation Scholarships for the Spring 2018 term. You can read her essay and artist statement below.

Essay Question: “The purpose of art is to create a thing of beauty, to convey a thought or message of some kind, or to provide inspiration to someone” – by Frederic Whitaker. Please select two paintings, one by Frederic Whitaker and one by Eileen Monaghan Whitaker, then describe your choices using the above quote for guidance. 

There is beauty to be found everywhere, and for as long as there has been art, artists have sought to portray this beauty through their work. The art practices of Frederic and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker portray this sentiment through their choices of subject. These artists chose to focus on different themes in their respective artistic practices. Frederic Whitaker focused on landscapes, boats on the sea, and buildings. Eileen Monaghan Whitaker, while also paying attention to buildings and some landscapes, dedicated much of her work to intimate portraits of women and animals. At first glance, these artists seem like perfect contrasts for one another. Frederic Whitaker left school at the age of fourteen and was a self taught artist. Eileen Monaghan Whitaker, on the other hand, attended the Massachusetts College of Art. Frederic Whitaker meticulously planned every detail of his works. Eileen Monaghan Whitaker felt her way through her watercolors. The Whitakers do share one important feature. These are two artists who took the time to notice the beauty of everyday life. Looking at the watercolors of Frederic Whitaker and Eileen Monaghan Whitaker shows the viewer that beauty is, in fact, everywhere. The Whitaker’s artworks are the results of people who spent their days fully aware of the beauty of everyday.

Frederic Whitaker focused on views of buildings on city streets or land and seascapes. His art practice can be represented by his 1996 work Sunset on the Plains. The painting is, as the title suggests, an image of a sun setting over the plains, a memory from his and Eileen’s drive through the Western Plains. In the distance of the painting is a small town, its buildings clustered together for a sense of security and community. The watercolor is made up of vibrant colors. Orange dominates the work. Frederic explores the way the colors of the darkening sky mix together and both reflect and contrast with the colors of the ground; vibrant greens and blues are present in the sky as well as the grass. He conveys the fading light by muting the rest of his color palette. Orange gives way to a warm brown, blues and greens fade away to gray. While the colors used in this work contribute greatly to the aesthetic value of the work, the real beauty is what the work conveys. The beauty of this painting is not in the importance of the image, in fact this could be any evening sky over any small town in the American plains. Through his sentimental portrayal of this memory, Frederic Whitaker has captured the beauty of an event that happens everywhere, everyday.

Eileen Monaghan Whitaker, while occasionally painting buildings and landscapes, chose to focus her artworks on intimate portraits of women and children, as well as animals. Her 1975 watercolor Se Venden Naranjas illustrates this. In this painting three women sit on the ground nearby the exterior of a building. Around the women are a few baskets, some overflowing with oranges, others empty. Like Frederic Whitaker, she utilizes a naturalistic color palette, dominated by shades of white, brown, and gray. The color of the oranges has been muted so as not to distract from the women, but is still bright enough to provide warmth to the painting. Also like Frederic Whitaker, she has taken a mundane moment and, in memorializing it, has drawn the viewer’s attention to the beauty in it. These women, frozen in a moment of repose, are not posing. They are not pretending to be anything other than what they are. They sell oranges. These tired women, sitting barefooted on the stone ground have a quiet dignity about them. The act of dedicating a watercolor to these women shows that Eileen Monaghan Whitaker realized beauty in them. The viewer pauses to appreciate the beauty in an image that, if encountered in real life, they may not have paid more than a moment’s attention to.

When first comparing the lives and artistic approaches of the Whitakers one may believe they could not possibly have anything in common. Of course, they do share a chosen media and a distinct style, but the most important shared characteristic of the Whitakers’ artworks is their attention and devotion to the portrayal of the beauty of everyday life. It is clear from the above paintings that the Whitakers were interested in portraying beauty through their artistic practices. In Sunset on the Plains, Frederic Whitaker chose to paint a scene familiar to and appreciated by all. Eileen Monaghan Whitaker, in contrast, portrayed a scene that surely only a few of Se Venden Naranjas‘ viewers had ever encountered in the real world. She portrays these women in their everyday lives, and in doing so shows the viewers the beauty in this. It is this appreciation of the beauty of everyday life that truly united the artistic practices of the Whitakers and what distinguishes them as artists.

Artist Statement:

There is a saying that goes, “When the student is ready, the teacher appears” and so it was for me and my love of Art History. When I took my first Art History class I was majoring in Psychology and had enrolled in an introductory course to fulfill my university’s general education requirements. I expected the class to be enjoyable, I expected to learn a little about art, I expected to something else. What I did not expect was to fall completely in love with the field. Now, almost two years later, I am completing my Bachelor’s degree in Art History from the University of Missouri – Kansas City and could not be happier.

During this time, I have had many opportunities to work and research in my field. I learned about museum education through the National Museum of Toys and Miniatures Education, where I learn how to make museum collections interesting to a general audience. This instilled in me a passion to make museums relevant and accessible to everyone.

Other internships and opportunities have cultivated my love of research. I was an intern and conducted independent research at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. I had the opportunity to present that research at the first annual Missouri Western State University and Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art Undergraduate Art History Symposium in April of last year. This research is also being published in my University’s undergraduate research journal. My passion for research was further supported by my University when they selected my grant proposal and funded a research project in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City where I studied ancient Greek tombstones. I also had the opportunity to present this research at my University’s Undergraduate Research Symposium earlier this year.

During my time at the University of Missouri – Kansas City I have also been involved in a variety of student service positions from Admissions to Recruitment to Residential Life. I currently work as a Resident Assistant for the university. I live with a group of thirty freshman students, helping them transition to college life by providing academic support and community development. I am also a member of Alpha Phi Omega, a national fraternity dedicated to promoting leadership through service.

After graduation I plan to continue my studies earning a Ph.D. in Art History with an emphasis in Early Modern Art. I hope to be able to use this degree to bring Art History to more people. I plan on working in a museum as a curator, focusing on creating exhibitions and gallery spaces that appeal to a wide array of people. Later in my career I would like to become a University professor in Art History so that I can instill in others the same passion for art history my professors gave me.