The Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia (MOCA GA) announced today that Shara Hughes, Jiha Moon, and Katherine Taylor are this year’s Working Artist Project award winners. The honor comes with a solo exhibition, promotional support, the services of a studio assistant recruited through the museum, and a major stipend to help fund work produced over the coming year.
The Working Artist Project isn’t simply a cash contest for local artists. It’s about the stability of our creative ecology: by raising and distributing funds so consistently each year, MOCA GA provides an invaluable service toward ensuring that the arts in our state will grow beyond the recession. The economy means that commissions and gallery sales still are difficult sources of income, so programs like these succeed by impacting several artists’ careers over an extended period of time.
Learn more about the project’s history and this year’s selection committee at the museum’s website, and read more about the three winners in this excerpt from today’s press release
ABOUT THE 2012/2013 WORKING ARTIST PROJECT WINNERS
“There is clearly great depth and diversity in Atlanta’s artistic pool. My selections include three dynamic female artists, all of whom explore the complex merging of abstraction and representation within painting, each in their own singular voice. I look forward to seeing how their exhibitions play a role in the ongoing vitality and plurality of painting today.”
- Julie Rodrigues Widholm.
Shara Hughes was born in Atlanta. She graduated with a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design in 2004 and she attended the residency program at Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2011. She’s attended also residencies at the Andersen Ranch in Colorado, Vermont Studio Center in Vermont, and two summers on the coast of Denmark through the Mikael Andersen Gallery. Hughes had her first solo show at Rivington Arms in New York City in 2007 and solo shows through Museum 52 in London, Mikael Andersen in Copenhagen as well as Berlin, and with the Metroquadro gallery in Turin, Italy. Hughes also was featured in the group show One Giant Leap: Work from the Saatchi Gallery in London in early 2012 and is scheduled for a solo exhibition this coming September at the American Contemporary gallery in New York, NY.
Hughes says of her work, “I always tell people there is really no separation between the canvas, the paint, the brush, and myself. This aligns with my ideas about where the lines are between abstraction and reality that I address in the work. Although not one painting is the same as the next, I really see no difference between the spaces I paint, the space I live in and the same space it all comes from.” She works and resides in Atlanta, GA.
Jiha Moon is from DaeGu, Korea and lives and works in Atlanta, GA. She received her BFA from Korea University in Seoul and her MFA from the University of Iowa, Iowa City. Her works have been acquired by the Asia Society and Museum in New York, the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, and the Smithsonian Institute’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, DC. Moon’s solo exhibition sites include the Mint Museum of Art in Charlotte, The Cheekwood Museum of Art in Nashville, and Rhodes College’s Clough-Hanson Gallery in Memphis. She has been part of several two-person and group exhibitions and has worked with printmaking presses and institutes throughout the country and abroad. She also regularly contributes to The Studio Visit (TSV), a non-profit web journal dedicated to focusing on the importance of studio practice and process for contemporary visual artists.
Moon has said of her work, “I am a painter, but everything I do is on paper – not on canvas…and historically speaking the East Asian tradition was not on canvas, either. This distinction between works on paper and painting – who are these people making these decisions? It’s one of convenience. I feel like it’s my job to trouble this distinction and mix it up.”
Katherine Taylor was born and raised in Biloxi, Mississippi. She received her BFA from Atlanta College of Art, and her MFA at Georgia State University. Taylor’s work has been exhibited nationally and internationally including the Marietta/Cobb Museum of Art, the Quebec City Biennale, The Atlanta Contemporary Art Center, Diverseworks in Houston, The Dalton Gallery at Agnes Scott College, The Tubman Museum, Florida State University Museum of Fine Art and art fairs in Chicago, New York, Miami, Portland and London. Her characteristically autobiographical paintings have been the topic for review. She has taught at several universities and is currently an Assistant Professor of Art at Kennesaw State University.
A statement from her recent solo at Marcia Wood Gallery, Firmament, describes her recent work: “Taylor distills the notion of landscape and horizon, arriving at an atmospheric, elemental place that is vivid and hushed with meditative weightlessness and expansive with light…referring to a nostalgic contemplation of the heavens as a consciousness of ones human relationship with the natural world.”