Santa Cruz Artist Mary Karlton Awarded First Prize in California
Pomegranate Festival Art Exhibit
Santa Cruz artist, Mary Karlton, was
awarded first prize for her painting
entitled "How Are You M'Lord?" by the
Madera County Arts Council's Celebrate
Agriculture with the Arts juried art
exhibition, Pomegranate Festival
category. The annual art exhibit is
currently being held at the Circle Gallery
Mary Karlton and Frank Award copy
SANTA CRUZ, Calif. - October 11, 2012 -- Santa Cruz artist, Mary Karlton, was awarded
first prize for her painting entitled "How Are You M'Lord?" by the Madera County Arts
Council's Celebrate Agriculture with the Arts juried art exhibition, Pomegranate Festival
category. The annual art exhibit is currently being held at the Circle Gallery in Madera.
According to 2012 exhibition judge Jerome Grimmer, renowned painter and art educator,
Ms. Karlton's painting displays "great use of the elements and principles of design" and
"brings an awareness that helps us see things differently."
On display are two of Ms. Karlton's figurative paintings from her "Pomegranate Portrait"
Series, both of which proved extremely popular on the night of the gallery's opening
reception. Ms. Karlton's piece, "How Are You M'Lord?" was especially admired and was
awarded first prize for its vibrant celebration of the pomegranate. The pomegranate not
only holds special significance to the agricultural community of Madera, it has also been
imbued with deep symbolic and mystical significance by cultures all over the world since
ancient times. With its abundant seeds and sweet ruby red juice, this fruit symbolizes
fertility, prosperity, royalty, and marriage.
Ms. Karlton's painting is an homage to the late Frank Snell of Santa Cruz, medical
professional in the US Army who served in Vietnam, educator, world traveler, and
benefactor. The pomegranate held special significance to Mr. Snell as well, as he had had
hoped to publish a book about his life experiences which he planned to call "The
Pomegranate." The project was cut short by his untimely death. Ms. Karlton's portrait of
Frank is the keystone piece for her ongoing "Pomegranate Portrait" series of bright and
lively portraits of individuals from all walks of life and diverse ethnic backgrounds.
Also on display at the Circle Gallery is Ms. Karlton's painting entitled Kynthia, which, in a
similar style, features a sleeping young female figure that represents the Greek goddess,
Artemis, or Kynthia, holding a pomegranate in her hand and dreaming of her lover,
symbolized by a stag. These works as well as many others will be on display at the Circle
Gallery until November 17. For more information about Celebrate Agriculture with the Arts
and the Madera County Arts Council, visit http://www.maderaarts.org/?page_id=334.
About Mary Karlton
Mary Karlton studied painting and printmaking in Chicago, San Francisco, and Santa Fe.
Her style is eclectic with highly textured works that combine elements of collage,
photography, and abstraction. She is captivated by the versatility and expressive potential
of acrylic media. Her heroes in the art world are multifaceted and innovative - DaVinci,
Lautrec, Van Gogh, Picasso, Dali, Magritte, Klimt, Kandinsky, Schiele, DeKoonig, and
Her work has been included in a wide array of exhibitions in Northern and Southern
California, including various books, galleries, and wine labels.
Recently, her acrylic painting "Anima," a timeless rendering of the female archetype, was
honored by placing in the Top 5 from more than 700 submissions for the Light, Space, and
Time Gallery's juried 2012 Figurative Art Competition.
Mary lives and paints in the scenic coastal town of Santa Cruz, CA with her husband,
musician and photographer Peter Sterbach. To learn more about Mary Karlton or to view
her online gallery of artwork, please visit http://www.marykarlton.com.
About Madera County Arts Council's Annual Celebrate Agriculture with the Arts
Originally funded by a grant from the California Arts Council, Celebrate Agriculture with
the Arts has been a tradition and source of local pride in Madera County for nearly 20
years. Though it has since lost its government funding, various donors and volunteers
have come through to keep the event moving forward year by year. 2012 saw the
introduction of a Pomegranate Festival category to honor one of the key crops in the
region, as well as the first ever photography section entitled Celebrating Agriculture... the
Human Factor. Despite its initial financial setbacks, more than one member of the Madera
County Arts Council has voiced the opinion that 2012 is Celebrate Agriculture with the
Arts' best year yet.
For this year's list of winners, or for more information about the Circle Gallery, "Celebrate
Agriculture with the Arts," or the Madera County Arts Council, please visit
Mary Karlton Fine Art
303 Potrero St., Suite 12B
Santa Cruz, CA, 95060