Conway artist James Arendt takes top Artfields prize

Congratulations to Conway artist Jim Arendt for winning the $50,000 top prize at Artfields in Lake City! Arendt’s cut-denim piece “Jamie” (pictured below) was selected by the judges from the 50 pieces receiving the most votes from the public.

An excerpt from the Florence Morning News article announcing the prize:

“From nearly 800 entries, 400 pieces made the cut, six artists dropped out and three winners — claiming $100,000 in prizes — were announced Saturday at the conclusion of the inaugural, 10-day, ArtFields festival that brought thousands of people to the streets of downtown Lake City.

James Arendt’s cut-denim piece “Jamie” —located in the Ragsdale Old Building — won the $50,000 top prize when it was selected by the five judges from the top 50 pieces selected by the popular vote. Leanna Knapp’s clay and fabric piece titled “Shell” — located in Becky’s Salon — won the Juried Panel Prize. John Cooper’s oil on canvas piece titled “Warsaw Ghetto 1943” — located in 104 East Main Street — won the $25,000 People’s Choice award.

Arendt’s wife Yvette Cunningham’s excitement made him realize that ArtFields executive director Karen Fowler did not say someone else’s name. Arendt uses denim in his piece because it represents durability, just like his sister who was his subject.

“You try to not get your expectations up too much, but when you are honored, it’s a little overwhelming when all those emotions are coming back,” Arendt said. “Art making is a lot of time alone, so to walk across that stage and have someone and a community appreciate your work is just tremendous. It’s a great honor to be here.”

Arendt, his wife and two daughters live in Conway and plan to give some money to art students at South Carolina State University.”

Read the complete article.

James Arendt, "Jamie"

Via: SC Now