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Rielle Oase & Kip Sudduth judge photography

Art Affairs at the Arizona State Fair

Written by Deborah Lewis Category: Visual Arts Issue: October 2016
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state fair art tales 1 inblogRielle Oase is assistant curator of the art exhibit at the Arizona State Fair. A student of the University of Arizona College of Fine Art, Oase never expected to get the gig. She applied to be a gallery monitor to add experience to her resume.

Chi Isiogu, Arizona State Art Fair head curator, instead brought the talented photography student on board as assistant curator of the 2016 Fine Art & Photography art show and art programming. Oase, who was was tapped to curate a photography competition blitzed with more than 900 entries, says of receiving the offer, “I almost died of excitement.” Isiogu wanted to revamp the exhibit and make it a flagship fair experience, to morph the Fair’s old-school venue - Veteran’s Memorial Coliseum – into a modern art space.

"Conjoined" by Danielle Wood. Photo by Rielle Oase

The art show accepted entries in 11 mediums; painting, drawing, ceramics, glass, jewelry, metal, fiber, wood, sculpture, graphic art and mixed media. Sculpture can get short shrift in an art world where drawing and painting usually dominate. Isiogu made sure to invite sculptors to compete. Danielle Wood received the Special Art Award for the ceramic piece she calls “Conjoined.”

"Undulation" by Lalana Fedorschak. Photo by Rielle OaseLalana Fedorschak is an art student at Northern Arizona University. She represented Flagstaff well with this quirky piece of rolling hills of screws – the kind you get at the hardware store – on a wood panel.

Keith Preston won First Prize for ceramics with this Raku vase. Raku is a dramatic, flash-fire glazing process.

“Tall Raku Bottle” by Keith Preston. Photo by Paul RubinThe Arizona State Art Fair – and the rest of the fair – runs through October 30.