Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Art Contest 2013

I have some of my best ideas early in the morning.  This must have been an excellent one because it came to me about 4:00 AM. 
We should have an art contest.  The winning work could be photographed and used as a souvenir poster for those attending the 2013 Alianza Vendimia.  I ran the idea past Eduardo, Stanley, and Conchita.  They all approved, but nobody had time to really help so I suckered my friend Estela into the combined roles of translator, guide, and public relations administrator. 

Together we went to the Casa de Cultura.  The director agreed to let us use the museum as a venue.  We gathered up judges, visited several prospective entrants to encourage them.  Together we wrote the invitation, designed the poster and then went all over town taping them on store windows.  Estela was a world of help.  I could not have done this without her.

According to the invitation, 4:00 PM was the deadline for entries, but at 2:00 PM we only had two paintings on display.  I started to panic.  Conchita came about 3:00.  She told me not to worry.  She assured me that we would have entrants.  She helped me set up the room and brought in trays of delicious and beautiful canapés.  The tables were set with tall vases of lilies, blue and white table cloths.  Still we only had two paintings.  It was depressing.  

At about 3:45, just as Conchita was bringing in the chocolate covered cherries and grapes, the place began filling up.  It was amazing.  In the end we had 11 entries from seven artists and a room full of parents, wives, husbands, children, and well-wishers.  We could have used more food and more chairs, but no one complained. 

Eduardo delivered a very nice talk about the importance of art in the community.  

The judges talked about the importance of encouraging art in the schools.  The director, the judges, and the participants were all acknowledged.  

At last it was time to present the winners.  Can you guess which one was first place?
I have 200 copies of the poster ready to distribute at the vendimia. 

I did not send the official invitation to very many folks in the United States because in the past there has been a definite lack of interest among my friends there.  However, I want to make it perfectly clear that we love to have visitors.

 Just in case . . . here is the invitation.  And the deadline for confirming could certainly be extended.  Just let me know! 

By the time everyone cleared out, I was exhausted – mainly from the stress of spending several hours believing I had hatched the biggest failure of my life. 

Back at home, folks were exhausted for an entirely different reason.  The Zinfandel had demonstrated its complete inability to cope with rain and humidity.  The decision had made shortly after I left home that afternoon to pick.  Of course, that meant that the grapes also had to be sorted, crushed, and then pressed.  Usually, we start this process early in the morning, not in the middle of the afternoon, and never in the rain.  But this was the day for a whole new adventure.

For your viewing pleasure, here are some of the other entries!