Submissions Now Open!
12th Biennial Alexander Rutsch Award
and Exhibition for Painting
Pelham Art Center is pleased to announce a call for entries for the 12th Biennial Alexander Rutsch Award and Exhibition for Painting. This juried competition is open to U.S.-based artists aged 19 and older. The winner is awarded a $5,000 cash prize, a solo exhibition and printed catalog at Pelham Art Center and $2,500 is divided among the finalists. Pelham Art Center is proud to sponsor this competition and award honoring the memory and artistic achievement of artist Alexander Rutsch (1916 – 1997). Rutsch actively supported Pelham Art Center for more than 25 years. After his death, friends, family and supporters established a generous fund to support a biennial, open, juried competition in painting.
The Alexander Rutsch Award and Exhibition program continues Rutsch’s belief that art transcends all of our humanity. Rutsch saw art as “the stone in the water sending ripples throughout the universe.” His extraordinary work, rich in the celebration of life and our shared human experiences, is included in many public and private collections throughout the U.S. and Europe.
All entries must be submitted through https://artist.callforentry.org/festivals_unique_info.php?ID=9629. Entries will be accepted through December 1, 2022. Only U.S.-based artists, 19 years of age and older, are eligible to apply.
The entry fee is $35 per applicant, for five images of available work. Pay by credit card through the secure online entry form. Payment must be made through the entry form. Entry fees are non-refundable.
Finalists will be notified by January 23, 2023. The winner will be notified by February 27, 2023. The exhibition date is May 18 through June 29, 2023.
The prize winner will be awarded a solo exhibition at Pelham Art Center and a cash award of $5,000. The award finalists will also be receiving cash stipends totaling $2,500.
The artist must submit between 5 and 8 pieces of artwork. All artwork submitted must be available for the exhibit in the event that they are chosen as the winner. Submit only files in .jpeg format. Files must be no smaller than 1200 pixels wide. 72dpi (standard web resolution) is acceptable and the file size should not exceed 5MB. Actual painting must not exceed 84 x 84 inches.
Finalists will be contacted and required to submit an artist’s statement, resume, and images of 20 additional available works. Artists must be U.S. Citizens, 19 years of age or older.
Alexander Rutsch was born in Vienna, Austria. After studying voice in Austria, he became an opera singer like his parents, but after WWII, Rutsch’s love for visual expression propelled him to change careers. He was a painter, sculptor, philosopher, musician, singer, and poet. His life as a romantic is reflected in his work, as he sought to perfect his soul and humanity. “I paint my dreams,” said Rutsch. “My dreams are color and life. They soar in my head like millions of symphonies. I can never stop building dreams.” In 1952, after studying under Josef Dorowsky, Josef Hoffmann, and Herbert Boeckl at the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts, Alexander Rutsch received a scholarship to study in France, where he made contacts and began collaborations with his contemporaries Picasso and Dali, among others. Rutsch said of his experiences with Picasso, “Picasso played a short but important moment in my life in Paris that affected my entire artistic future. I learned from him that it is not important if art is not aesthetically finished. It can be raw, uncooked, rough. If an artist feels he has said it – it is not important to polish or finish it. Because of Picasso, I learned that if I don’t feel the need to finish – I don’t have to.” In 1954, he exhibited his work at the Salon Artistique International de Saceux and won first prize for abstract painting, the first of many awards during his prolific career. During the 13 years he lived in Paris, Rutsch exhibited in many prominent galleries there and throughout Europe. In 1958, the City of Paris awarded him with the prestigious Arts, Science and Letters Silver Medal. In 1966, Jean Desvilles presented his prize winning film “Le Monde de Rutsch” at the Cannes Film Festival and the Venice Biennial. In 1968, Rutsch moved to Pelham, New York, where he continued to work in his studio and exhibit in galleries and museums worldwide. Rutsch’s work, as seen through his mastery of various art forms – sculpture, painting, print-making, and drawing – has been described as “vibrating showers of lines, bold geometries, wounded anatomically rambling scrap-wood skeletons, enigmatic totem figures, and congregations of fetishized, domesticated, and recycled rubbish heaps [that] conspire to a fantasy of Expressionism, Cubism, Dada, Fauvism, Cobra, and Primitivism.” His pieces, as described by Emily Genauer, impart silence and the monumentality of primitive statuary. His sculptures are stylized to abstract construction made of “found” objects, welded and reshaped into bronze figures and animals of uncommon wit, airy grace, and individuality. His portraits are crisp, intense, spare linear characterizations that convey empathy. Pelham Art Center is proud to sponsor a competition and award to honor the memory and artistic achievement of Alexander Rutsch.
Visit www.alexanderrutsch.com to learn more.