Sunday, October 21, 2012

Elegance and Art in the Hill Country

Cana Ballroom, Entrance Tower and Catwalk
© Bill Brockmeier, 2012
The Preview night and opening of the 2012 edition of the Texas Hill Country Invitational was an elegant evening and celebration of the creative arts. The show's venue at the new Cana Ballroom was the perfect location for such a fete. With the panoramic vista of the sun setting beautifully over the Texas hills, the wine corks popped and the crowd buzzed. The grand piano near the lobby served up a musical breeze that wafted through the night air.

The art collectors and lovers who came from across Texas to enjoy this weekend of art were not disappointed. The fine art displayed at the Preview party covered a wide spectrum of media, styles, and subjects. From the intricately executed, but boldly designed "tribal art" of Chris Gray to the sensitively modeled and dynamic western women sculptures of John Bennett, there was something to intrigue everyone. This was a veritable smorgasbord of fine art fare.

Halfway through the evening, the results of the independent judging of entries was revealed. I was quite surprised and pleased to hear that one of my own entries, "Beyond the Stone," captured the award in the photography division. John Bennett's powerful "Accordianist" sculpture was awarded the "Best of Show." Although having been named "Texas State Sculptor" in 2010, John Bennett was visibly quite moved to receive the "Best in Show." John is not only an amazing artist, but a wonderfully humble man as well. Well done, John.

BEYOND THE STONE, © Bill Brockmeier, 2012, all rights reserved by the artist, 1st Place Photography 2012 THCI
On Saturday, the day began with an opportunity for art patrons to gab informally with the artists over coffee and fresh pastry before the show itself formally opened. Then the QuickDraw event witnessed the rapid-fire work of a half-dozen or so painters as they created "instant" works of fine art in the brief span of only 60 minutes. Later in the afternoon, these works would be sold in a live auction to the gathered crowd. These works were so new and fresh, that the new owners had to be careful taking them home so the still-wet paint wasn't smudged. Kind of like getting incredible fresh-baked bread, still warm from the oven.

The afternoon was a rich opportunity for those who attended the many art-related demonstrations and lectures. These twenty-minute segments showcased diverse techniques and offered insight into creative efforts.

Sunday will see the final installment of this year's edition of the Texas Hill Country Invitational. Although all of the other surrounding events are now history, you still have one last opportunity to see (and own) some marvelous creative works. Come out to Boerne, enjoy a beautiful Hill Country October afternoon, and take home something you will treasure for years.

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