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Bellevue Arts Museum Announces BAM Biennial Award Winner
Nathan Craven (Helena, MT), Kosmeo Wall. Ceramic, glaze. Courtesy of the artist. Photo: Nora Atkinson.

BELLEVUE, WA.- Bellevue Arts Museum just launched the first edition of its new signature exhibition series, BAM Biennial. The Museum is excited to announce that ceramic artist Dirk Staschke is the recipient of one of two prestigious awards given in conjunction with this juried exhibition. The John & Joyce Price Award of Excellence, selected by the curatorial staff of the Museum, comes with a $5,000 cash prize and the opportunity of a future solo exhibition at BAM.

"The BAM Biennial celebrates the extraordinary work of artists and craftsmen working and living in the Northwest," says Stefano Catalani, Director of Curatorial Affairs/Artistic Director of Bellevue Arts Museum. "By establishing this important exhibition series, we are filling a unique niche that allows us to capture the very moment in which craft is gaining a tremendous amount of momentum."

The first edition of the BAM Biennial focuses on one of the oldest and most versatile media known to man: clay. Dirk Staschke is one of over 30 artists participating in the BAM Biennial 2010: Clay Throwdown! which will be on view at BAM though January 16, 2011. He lives and works in Vancouver, British Columbia, and has maintained an ongoing studio practice and extensive exhibition record for the last 12 years. He has taught at many notable universities, including Emily Carr, Alfred University and New York University. Staschke’s work resides in the permanent collections of several museums, including the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, DC; Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, TX; and Icheon Museum, World Ceramic Center in Gwango-dong, South Korea.

"Dirk Staschke's 'My Beautiful Nothing' is as striking as it is perturbing," Catalani notes. "Masterly crafted and visually arresting, the sculpture commands the space with its cascading presence. In its fleshy appearance the piece is a contemporary memento constructed around the polarities of bounty and decay, fullness and emptiness, movement and stillness. Reaching out to a scale bigger and more complex than previous works, Staschke pushed himself to create something unique in conversation with the grand architecture of the museum."

The second award in conjunction with the BAM Biennial is the Samuel & Patricia Smith People's Choice Award. Between now and October 27th, Museum visitors have an opportunity to cast a vote for their favorite artist. The award, which is also recognized with a $5,000 cash prize, will be announced at the October 28th Members' Reception.

Bellevue Arts Museum | BAM Biennial | Stefano Catalani |

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