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Springfield Art Museum News Releases

Posted on: May 7, 2018

New York Artist Takes Top Award in Watercolor USA 2018

Kathleen Giles, "Queen of Hearts"


Springfield, MO. (May 7, 2018) – The Springfield Art Museum is pleased to announce that Gasport, New York artist Kathleen S. Giles has won the Kenneth M. Shuck Memorial $3,000 Cash Award for her entry Queen of Hearts, in this year’s Watercolor USA annual juried exhibition. Gasport is a hamlet located near Niagara Falls, New York.

Giles is a signature member of the National Watercolor Society, a member of the Watercolor USA Honor Society, the Pennsylvania Watercolor Society, and the Niagara Frontier Watercolor Society. She is a watercolor instructor at the Kenan Center in Lockport, New York and co-hosts a weekly cable show, Watercolors with Jody and Kathy, on Lockport Cable Television.

Organized in 1962, this year marks the 57th year of Watercolor USA. The nationally known exhibition is open to artists from all 50 states and U.S. territories, and seeks to discover what is new and what is next in the world of contemporary American watermedia. This year’s exhibit was judged by Kelly Kane, a 20-year veteran in the art publishing world, and current Editor-In-Chief of PleinAir Magazine.

Of the 464 entries by 264 artists from 45 states, Kane selected 82 works by 81 artists representing 31 states for inclusion in the exhibition. Overall, 11 artists from Missouri were selected for the exhibition including Robert Langford (Branson); Jerry Ellis (Carthage); Jennifer Wiggs (Columbia); Richard Dutton (Hallsville); John Keeling and Marlin Rotach (Kansas City); Kelly Eddington (Monroe City); Alicia Farris, John Fitzgibbon, and Sharon Warren (Springfield); and Terry Lay (St. Louis).

Kane has assembled an exhibit that highlights high-realism, and an abundance of traditional transparent watercolor works on paper, many with a large format that will certainly make an impact. She notes, “I selected paintings that not only demonstrate the artists’ command of design and craft—making the most of the unique qualities of watercolor—but those that also tell a compelling story or offer a statement about the artist’s unique view of his or her world. Together, the works in this show illustrate the rich diversity and skill that characterize the medium today.”

Other top award winners include:

Greg G. Thielen Memorial $2,000 Cash Award: Sydni Reubin (Illinois), Two Ones

Bill Armstrong Memorial $1,500 Cash Award: Susan Weintraub (New York), McDonald Avenue

Robert E. Goodier Memorial $1,000 Cash Award For Traditional Transparent Watercolor: Robin Erickson (California), Galleria Reflection

In addition to the Springfield Art Museum awards, the Watercolor USA Honor Society provides ten additional cash awards, three merchandise awards, and new this year, a $500 reciprocal Award of Excellence from the National Watercolor Society. These awards are selected by Watercolor USA Honor Society members Karla Breeding Trammel and Jerry Ellis.

See all the award winners and more at Watercolor USA, beginning with an opening reception on June 1 at 5:30 PM, graciously sponsored by the Southwest Missouri Museum Associates. The exhibit runs through August 26 at the Springfield Art Museum located at 1111 East Brookside Drive. Admission is always free. Donations are gratefully accepted.


 The Springfield Art Museum is Springfield, Missouri’s oldest cultural institution, founded in 1928. A department of the City of Springfield, the Museum invites you to connect with the world, your community, and yourself through active engagement with art objects. For more information, please visit

Watercolor USA 2018
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