Betsy Evans and her first-place artwork, Trojan Goat.

A white billy goat astride gear-shaped wheels is the sculpture, titled the Trojan Goat by Betsy Evans, that received first place in Archway Gallery's Tenth Annual Juried Exhibition.

The whimsical and unique interpretation of the subject matter is how this year’s juror, Diane Gregory, chose the 62 pieces to be displayed in the front gallery. A record-breaking 295 pieces were submitted.

Gregory says the selection is a visual process. “I am looking at what the image is saying, how well the artist has crafted it, and how well it fits with the other images,” she says.

Archway is an artist-operated private gallery with about 30 members. The Juried Exhibition gives the opportunity for non-members to display their work, and many of the artists chosen for the exhibit are less established—in some cases even untrained—and this provides a way to get their work out in public. “Archway has been around for 42 years, it has a long history and a great reputation,” Gregory says. “An artist gets the credibility that they’re looking for here.”

Gregory was particularly touched by the artist who received third place, Habibah Haugstad, who crafted a wire sculpture depicting a woman adorned with a green and white fabric dress and headpiece, titled Songs from my Childhood. Haugstad brought her entire family to the opening reception of the exhibit.

Third-place winner Habibah Haugstad.

“It is so wonderful to be able to give an award to somebody for something that means so much to them that they bring their family,” Gregory says.

“I was fascinated by her craftsmanship,” Gregory adds. “Not only are you looking for craft, you’re looking for a different view of life.”

Half of the proceeds from the exhibit go to Archway’s charity partner, Rescue Bank, a non-profit that supports animal welfare groups by providing pet food. 

At the exhibit opening, Executive Director Elizabeth Asher said Rescue Bank responded to Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria last year. They distributed over 1 million pounds of pet food to Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands after hurricanes battered their homes. 

Asher says Rescue Bank has 25 distribution centers throughout the United States. “We are making it our mission that Puerto Rico will now be a permanent distribution center for our organization, and we are very proud to support their work,” Asher adds. “Locally, we work with 60 animal rescue groups in the Houston area.”

Archway will also begin a pet food drive July 17 to support Rescue Bank in addition to their monetary donation from the exhibit proceeds.

Tenth Annual Juried Exhibition, Thru August 2. Archway Gallery, 2305 Dunlavy St. 713-522-2409. More info at archwaygallery.com.

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