Legacy Trust Award Collection picks artists for ArtPrize entries


"Angel Fiancee," an oil painting by Tom Rundquist. Courtesy Legacy Trust Award Collection

For the fourth year in a row, the Legacy Trust Award Collection is hosting a statewide competition for adult artists with disabilities — the winners of which will be entered in ArtPrize 2013.

One of the three winning artists will be selected by a panel of five local celebrity judges at a special awards reception on Wednesday night and the other two by a public vote that will be held from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Thursday. The pieces will be on display in the Grand Rapids Art Museum that day.

One artist also will be selected by the LTAC Advisory Committee to receive the Lillian Perry Walker Award, a special juried award that is being presented for the first time this year. It was named in honor of the young woman whose spirit was the spark that brought LTAC to life in 2010.

Winners of the 2013 LTAC will be announced the week of May 27. Along with having their artwork entered into ArtPrize, the winning artists will receive a cash prize of $500. Legacy Trust will also work with each of the four artists to market their entries, secure media coverage prior to and during the event and support their entries into the world’s largest art competition.

The 2013 LTAC celebrity judges are:

Jim Albright, a Hudsonville native and entrepreneur who is the president and founder of Albright Insights. He holds a patent on Xcess-Able, a mobility and accessibility smartphone app that will assist those with disabilities to navigate through buildings.

Elaine Dalcher, a talented Grand Rapids artist who has earned a reputation over the last 30 years for creating bold and colorful oil paintings. During her 34-year career with the Grand Rapids Public Schools, she has been an instructor to artists with disabilities. Dalcher is the recipient of the 2012 YWCA Tribute Award for the Arts. Her work is represented in public, corporate and private collections throughout the United States and beyond.

John Gonzalez, the statewide entertainment editor for MLive, who reports, blogs, hosts a weekly radio show and is fully immersed in all the fun things Michigan has to offer. His travel stories and “best of” pieces have taken readers from Traverse City and Flint to Kalamazoo and Detroit.

Hon. Robert J. Jonker, a federal judge for the U.S. District Court of the Western District of Michigan who was appointed by President George W. Bush in 2007. A native of Holland, he practiced litigation at Warner Norcross & Judd LLP for 20 years before moving to the bench.

Chris LaPorte, a professor at Aquinas College who captured the attention of the art world when he secured the top spot in ArtPrize 2010 with his spectacular pencil drawing “Cavalry.” LaPorte also was one of the top 10 artists in last year’s competition for “City Band.” LaPorte recently launched a new website, drawingsdaily.com, where he auctions a small drawing each day.

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