Plaquemine Bank holds 30th Annual “Art Alert” Art Show

Staff Report @ThePostSouth
Photograph of all winners present at the show, with the two judges, Judi Betts and Nikki Spencer, International Acadian Festival Queen Victoria Savoy and, far right, Art Alert Art Show emcee Totsie Tempanaro, Plaquemine Bank Chief Financial Officer.

Plaquemine Bank and Trust held its 30th Annual “Art Alert” Art Show on Wednesday, April 26, 2017 which was open to all natives and current residents of Iberville and West Baton Rouge parishes.

There were 99 total entries in this year’s “Art Alert” with a limit of one entry per artist in all categories, except adults and professionals.

Entry categories included Under 10 Years of Age, 10-13 Years of Age, 14-18 Years of Age, 18+ Years of Age and Professional.

A community-wide reception was held in the Plaquemine Bank lobby to recognize all participating artists.  Totsie Tempanaro, CFO of Plaquemine Bank & Trust Company, emceed the reception.  She thanked bank employees who planned the event, as well as Jan Herrington with Positive Results Advertising, the bank’s marketing firm, and introduced Victoria Savoy, the reigning International Acadian Festival Queen.  Then she introduced the Art Alert art show judges Nikki Spencer and Judi Betts, aws, nws.  She thanked everyone who entered the contest and the teachers who encouraged their students.

Judi Betts, aws, nws is highly respected as a painter, author, instructor and juror.  She graduated with a Fine Arts Degree from Indiana University, received a Masters in Education from Louisiana State University and has done post graduate work at both Brigham Young and Southern Oregon State Universities.  Her paintings are included in museum, corporate and university collections.  Many of her works can be seen on network television shows.  Betts also produces a line of designer silk scarves.

More than 450 watercolor workshops have been conducted by Judi Betts in the USA, foreign countries and aboard cruise ships, including the QE2.  Betts' judging and jurying history dates to 1981.  Betts’ paintings have won well over 100 awards in major competitions including The National Academy of Design, American Watercolor Society, National Watercolor Society and Watercolor USA. After 25 years of full membership, Judi was invited in 2016 to do a demonstration in New York City for their exhibit.  Invitational exhibitions include State of the Art, Taiwan Art Education Institute, Federation of Canadian Artists, Walt Disney’s EPCOT Center, Allied Artists of America at the Butler Institute, Pogan Galleries (CA), “Masters of Watercolor”, and Selected Artists of the National Arts Club. Betts was selected for a special award for ”Contributions to the medium of Watercolor” by Watercolor USA Honor Society and in 2012 received their Lifetime Achievement Award, their highest honor.

She is the author of award winning books WATERCOLOR…Let’s Think About It! and PAINTING…a QUEST toward XTRAORDINARY and is also a contributor to many prominent art magazines. Judi Betts is a signature member of the American and National Watercolor Societies. She also holds memberships in both the National and Salmagundi Art Clubs in New York City; and is listed in “Who’s Who in American Art”. 

Nikki Spencer, a Baton Rouge artist, received her undergraduate degree in Interior Architecture and a Masters of Architecture degree, from the University of Oregon. She taught design graphics, rendering and drawing for 30 years in the Interior Design Program at Louisiana State University. Nikki currently serves on the Workshop Committee of the Louisiana Art and Artists Guild and participates in its member shows.

Nikki provided the artwork and design for many Boy Scout patch sets and has been named the Istrouma Area Council (BSA) Council Artist.  Her work has also been shown locally at Frameworks Gallery and the annual LPB Art Auction.  Ms. Spencer is a member of the Urban Sketchers, a global community of artists who practice on-location drawing.  She has experience working in a variety of media, including encaustic monoprints, mosaics, watercolor, collage and calligraphy.  Travel and sketchbook journaling are two of her favorite activities.

Bing Zheng’s “Take Red Door” took home first place honors in the Professional category.  Second place went to Randy LaPrarie’s “Ahead of the Storm” and third place was awarded to Amanda Landry’s “Outside,” a portrait of her dog in foliage.  Honorable mention was awarded to Joan Landry Lasak for her abstract work entitled, “Fantasy.”  Amanda Landry also received the Bankers Choice award in this category.

First place in the 18 Years + category was awarded to Jeanita Tortorich for “Lady with Flowers”, while Gloria Genusa’s “Hooyah” and Tomi Taylor’s “A Friendly Disagreement” received second and third places, respectively.   Steve Martin’s “The Ghost House” earned honorable mentions.  Steve Martin’s “She’s Leaving Home” was selected as the Bankers Choice award in this category.

In the 14 to 18 Years of Age Category, first place went to Haleigh Babin’s “Enjoying the Sun.”  Daryana Fernandez’s “The Big Drip” won second place.  The third place winner was Daniella Guiterrez’s “Humble Scenes.”  Honorable mention was awarded to Leeland Williams’ “The Other Side of Me.”  The Bankers Choice Award went to Daryana Fernandez for her Oreo cookie.

In the 10 – 13 Years of Age category, “Purple Patch” by Jana Wilkinson earned first place honors.  Emma Hargrove’s “Nectar Collector” butterfly received the second place award.  Third place honors went to Mariah Granger for “Colorful Night”.  Honorable mention was awarded to Jeremiah Jones for his untitled abstract.  Morgan LeBlanc’s painting of wisteria, a garden shovel and fence earned the Bankers Choice prize.

In the Under 10 Years of Age category, Michael Campbell’s untitled fish face received first place honors.  Second place was awarded to an untitled dinosaur by Austin Mendoza and third place honors were awarded to Alyana Williams’ untitled piece.  Jonathan Harris received an honorable mention for his untitled abstract.  Calise Landry’s untitled dragon girl received the Bankers Choice award.

Betts and Spencer commended Plaquemine Bank for hosting this event and for the area art teachers for participating.