THE DOG AND PONY SHOW: A SONDHEIM FINALIST ALUMNI EXHIBITION
Dates: June 30 – July 30, 2017 at Area 405
Fancy Opening Reception June 30: 7-9 pm
Curated by Cara Ober & Stewart Watson
After twelve years, The Janet & Walter Sondheim Prize has generated an elite alumni of
visual artists from the Baltimore / Washington region. Each year, esteemed international jurors select 6-7 finalists for a museum exhibition and the chance to compete for the $25k prize. At this point there are approximately seventy former Sondheim finalists.
The Dog and Pony Show is an Artscape Satellite exhibition that recognizes those who
have been previously selected as Sondheim finalists as a community of high achieving
visual artists. The exhibit at Area 405 is curated by Stewart Watson, Director of Area
405, and Cara Ober, Editor of BmoreArt, who reached out to all seventy former
Sondheim Finalists and invited them, to the best of their ability, to participate. The result
is an exhibit featuring over a third of the former finalists designed to celebrate the award and
their evolving careers.
Although the title of the exhibit is a tongue-in- cheek response to the spectacle of
competitive art, the exhibit will function as a celebration, as well as a critique, of
Baltimore's most prestigious art prize from the perspective of those who have
experienced it directly.
Participating artists have been encouraged to create new works in response to the
phenomenon of art prizes, both the positive and negative aspects of the experience, and
can function as a critique of the artifice inherent in theatrical display. Using serious and
humorous approach, as well as metaphorical imagery of dogs, ponies, and stage acts,
the artists in this exhibit will honestly examine the vulnerability of artists, definitions of
success in the art world, and performative public experiences. As Area 405 is a large
space with inherent personality, large installation work and sculpture will form the
centerpiece of the show.
The Dog and Pony Show seeks to build community and advocacy within a growing
family of Sondheim Finalists, to recognize their achievements and struggles, and to
visualize the long-term impact of this prize upon the careers of regionally based artists.
Participating artists include: Chris Lavoie, Chris Palios, Laure Drogoul, Darcie Book,
David Page, Frank Day, Hasan Elahi, Jon Duff, Jason Hughes, Jim Leach, Karen
Yazinsky, Lauren Frances Adams, Lisa Dillin, Leah Cooper, Magnolia Laurie, Mark
Parascandola, Melissa Dickenson, Molly Springfield, Neil Feather, Ryan Hackett, Ryan
Syrell, René Treviño, Stephanie Barber, Stewart Watson, Tony Shore, Wickerham &
Lomax, and Zoë Charlton.