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Posted on: May 23, 2016

Springfield Artist Takes Top Award in Watercolor U.S.A. 2016

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Springfield, MO. (May 23, 2016) - The Springfield Art Museum is pleased to announce that local artist Blake Willis Tiggemann has won the Kenneth M. Shuck Memorial $3,000 Cash Award and the Springfield Art Museum Purchase Award for his entry “Lost in the Fire,” in this year’s Watercolor U.S.A. annual juried exhibition.

Organized in 1962, this year marks the 55th year of Watercolor U.S.A. The nationally known exhibition is open to artists from all 50 states and U.S. territories, and seeks to discover what's new and what's next in the world of contemporary American watermedia. This year’s exhibit was judged by Lynne Warren, curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago where she has organized over 25 solo exhibitions of internationally, nationally, and locally-based artists who represent a wide range of mediums and historical periods.

Of the 447 entries by 254 artists from 39 states, Warren selected 78 works by 78 artists for inclusion in the exhibition; twenty-five states are represented in the exhibition. Overall, seventeen artists from Missouri were selected for the exhibition including Josh Crow (Belle); Jerry Ellis (Carthage); Cindy Kopenhafer and Gordon Lindsey (Pleasant Hope); Howard Kuo (Hannibal); Robert Langford and Helen Long (Branson); Catherine Mahoney (Hermann); Amber Mintert (Webb City); Karla Breeding Trammell (Bolivar); Brenda Pollreisz (Fair Grove); Debora Reed (Joplin); Linda Rhoads (Sedalia); Fred Schollmeyer (Chamois); and Nathen Reynolds, John Short and Blake Willis Tiggemann (Springfield).

The Museum has continued to make efforts to reach out to more artists working in a broader range of media. Curator of Art Sarah Buhr notes, “Watercolor U.S.A. continues to expand and adjust with contemporary artistic practice. We are excited to see a continued increase in new artists entering the exhibit. These artists are continuing to push the boundaries of watermedia and are not only expanding into sculpture and artists' books, but are also applying watermedia to very untraditional supports with exciting results including paper bags and cut and molded Lexan.”

Other top award winners include:

o Greg G. Thielen Memorial $2,000 Cash Award: Paula Henderson, "Groundwork V"

o $1500 Cash Award: Gail Delger, "Silhouettes"

o Robert E. Goodier Memorial $1,000 Cash Award For Traditional Transparent Watercolor, Given By His Children, Winslow And Elizabeth: Vicky Lilla, "Synergy"

o Pearl Appley Memorial $300 Cash Award, Given By Her Husband, Harry Appleby: Sarah Capps, "Golden Years"

See all the award winners and more at Watercolor U.S.A., beginning with a reception on June 3 from 5:30 to 7 PM and running from June 4 through August 28 at the Springfield Art Museum, located at 1111 E. Brookside Drive. Admission is always free. Major support for Watercolor U.S.A. is generously provided by Southwest Missouri Museum Associates. Additional cash awards are provided courtesy of the Watercolor U.S.A. Honor Society.


The Springfield Art Museum is Springfield, Missouri’s oldest cultural institution, founded in 1928. A department of the City of Springfield, we are dedicated to enhancing the education and documenting the cultural heritage of the people of southwest Missouri through the collection, preservation, and exhibition of art objects. For more information, please visit

For more information, please contact Joshua Best, Development and Marketing Coordinator, 417-837-5700 ext. 224 or

Watercolor U.S.A. 2016
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