Wednesday, January 28, 2009

2nd Annual Sculpture Competition

GCA's 2nd Annual Classical Figure Sculpture Competition is open to all figurative sculptors. Professional sculptors, past participants and advanced students will be considered. Twelve finalists will be selected from the online applicants to compete June 8 - 12, 2009, in modeling a half-size figure from life. The model will pose for 8 hours each day for a cumulative 40 hour pose. The participants and winners will be chosen on the basis of their modeling ability and demonstrated aspirations to make beautiful, excellent classical sculpture.

Public Viewings:
On Monday & Wednesday evening, we will open the competition room for public viewing and informal dialogue, and the competitors are warmly invited to stay.

On Friday evening, the panel of judges will announce the winners at a public Gala.

Applications will be accepted by email only.

For an application, please email:

For competition details, please visit:

Monday, January 26, 2009

Portrait Painting

In the core student program we have portrait painting on Monday afternoons with Camie Davis. The paintings below were started and finished in a 4 hour class period and we have a different model each week. On Monday evenings, a similar class is offered from 6:30-9:30 PM (The Painted Sketch, taught by Richard Piloco) that anyone can sign up for on a monthly basis.

by Carla Crawford

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Ariadne, new painting by Camie Davis

GCA instructor Camie Davis has just shared with us this image of her most recent painting, Ariadne. You can click on the image to get a closer view. The inspiration for this painting comes from the Greek myth of Ariadne who fell in love with Dionysus the god of wine, when he found her abandoned on the island of Crete. They were married and lived happily until Dionysus went to war with Perseus at Argos, who had slain Medusa and wore her severed head on his sheild. Durring the battle Ariadne stayed by her husbands side and was turned to stone by Perseus who was aiming for Dionysus. It is said that on her wedding day Ariadne was given a golden crown by the goddess Aphrodite and when Ariadne was turned to stone Dionysus threw the crown into the heavens where it remains today as the constellation Corona Borealis.

Ariadne 28"x40" oil on linen by Camie Davis

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Thomas Hill painting chosen for Obama's Inaugural Lunch

"View of Yosemite Valley" by Thomas Hill (American, 1829-1908) was the painting chosen for President Obama's inaugural luncheon on Tuesday. The painting, on loan from the New York Historical Society, had the place of honor behind the head table in Stuatuary Hall.

This work of art reflects the majestic landscape of the American West and the dawn of a new era. The subject of the painting, Yosemite Valley, represents an important but often overlooked event from Lincoln's presidency—his signing of the 1864 Yosemite Grant, which set aside Yosemite Valley and the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias as a public reserve.
This painting is of special importance to our community, since Thomas Hill came from the Hudson River School painters and had a background in classical training. The Hudson River Fellowship, a program affiliated with GCA/Water Street Atelier and founded by Jacob Collins, is seeking to build a new movement of American art today, modeled after the artistsic, social and spiritual values of the Hudson River School painters. The goals of this new fellowship program aim to bring back the skills and spirit of the pre-impressionist landscape painters. The program focuses on careful study of nature while nurturing a renewed reverence for the land. Ideally, these artists and their beautiful representations of nature will help to lead the culture back to a stronger connection to the landscape. The school seeks to make a contribution both to the art world and the conservation movement.

Here is a video clip showing the painting. About 3 minutes into it Dianne Feinstein starts talking about the painting and why it was chosen.


Congratulations Barack Obama! We're all pretty excited.

The scene in Times Square, 2 blocks away from us. There was some confusion among the ranks at school as we tried to figure out a way to listen or watch the ceremony without stopping our classes. The sculpture room was able to get a radio station going while some of us ran down to the bar to watch Obama give his speech live. Carla was actually there in Washington, so we all got a first hand account when she came back on Wednesday.

Portrait sculpture of Barack Obama by GCA instructor Jiwoong Cheh, life size clay, 2008

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Still Life painting.

In addition to cast drawing/painting, figure drawing/painting, and figure sculpture, students also have the opportunity to study still life painting. Here are some pictures from today at the studio.

Arturo Garcia's still life in progress. He has done a value study (above right) and is now finishing a color study (below right) before he starts the final painting. You can click on these images to see larger versions of them.

This is a still life demonstration in progress by instructor Tony Curanaj.

Monday, January 12, 2009

ARC scholarship awards

Water Street Atelier/Grand Central Academy students Joshua LaRock, Carol Broman, and Hyeseung Marriage-Song just cleaned up at the Art Renewal Center 2008 Scholarship awards. This year, the ARC gave away $21,ooo in scholarships to students who are studying at ARC approved Ateliers. Congratulations on your wins!!!

First Place: Joshua LaRock
Ann Marie (2008)
Oil on Linen
28x25 inches

Second Place: Carol Broman
Julie (2008)
Graphite on Paper
14x11 inches

Third Place: Hyeseung Marriage-Song
Grisaille of a Seated Female (2008)
Oil on Linen
24x20 inches

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Alma Schapiro prize winner Jeffrey Mims

Congratulations to painter and muralist Jeffrey Mims who just won the Alma Schapiro prize! The prize is offered by the Instituted of Classical Architecture and Classical America every other year to advance the career of an artist recipient and to foster the continuity of knowledge of the classical tradition as a vital aspect of contemporary culture around the globe.

The centerpiece of the prize is a three-month affiliated fellowship at the American Academy in Rome, the premier American overseas center for independent study and research in the fine arts and humanities. The total award will include Academy fees, travel allotment and award stipend.

Jacob Collins, founding director of the Grand Central Academy of Art, ICA&CA board member, and Schapiro Prize jury chairman, said, "Jeffrey Mims has been at the forefront of the revival of classical art for the last 20 years. He has made great contributions as an artistic leader as well as a teacher. His school, Mims Studios, plays an important role in the training of young classical artists. We are delighted and honored to be able to offer the Alma Schapiro Fellowship at the American Academy in Rome to him."

Paul Gunther, president of the ICA&CA adds, "I am grateful to Jacob Collins and his fellow jurors for the decision made, despite once again the fierce competition from exemplary classical artists at work across the country today. In particular, the choice for the 2009 Fellowship of Jeffrey Mims reminds us all of the value of a mid-career sojourn at the Academy unfolding as it will among such committed creative trailblazers of many disciplines both artistic and scholarly. I know that both Mims' own work as well as his commitment to teaching will be duly enhanced. Of the Institute's two alternating American Academy prize fellowships, Schapiro in the fine arts and Rieger-Graham in architecture, Mims is the first recipient, who can bring to bear an already well- and long-established career with the prospect of renewed achievement in its promising wake."