Awards for the arts
Cultural Confidential Contributor
Since the early 1990s, The Champion of the Arts Awards has be held annually. It encourages the community to nominate individuals and businesses they feel go above and beyond in supporting the arts and cultural community in Grand Junction.
This year’s awards go to several deserving individuals and one organization.
A reception will be held to honor the Champions of the Arts at Grand Junction City Hall on Wednesday, Jan. 15, from 6-6:45 p.m. The awards will be presented during the City Council meeting at 7 p.m. The public is invited to attend.
BUSINESS AWARD — SUPER RAD
Jason Bradham, Naomi Barlow, Jess Rigg and Bryan Wade of Super Rad were nominated by Gary Hauschulz, a retired art teacher from Grand Junction High School.
Super Rad is home to the Super Rad Art Show, a student-driven event held annually, and Mural Jam, which marries the idea of skateboarding and spray paint art. Super Rad is instrumental in fundraising for and instructing in local schools.
“Our school art programs have been blessed by various groups,” Hauschulz said, “but nobody has done it like Super Rad. They got the kids themselves to be actively involved.”
This year, the Arts Commission voted for two individual awards.
The first goes to Lois and Edward Gardner, who were nominated by Peter Booth, the executive director of the Museum of Western Colorado.
Booth said the Gardners’ ongoing support of the annual Cowboy Poet Gathering since 1992 is the reason for their nomination. The Gardners also support and volunteer with the Two River Chautauqua, and Edward Gardner has served on the museum’s Board of Directors since 2005.
The second individual award goes to Vera Mulder. She had five nominations from across the valley — Palisade to Fruita — from individuals, municipalities, and businesses alike. Many cited Mulder’s untiring commitment to inspire students in the arts throughout her career as an art teacher spanning three decades. They talked of her lifelong passions for art and encouraging countless art enthusiasts, gallery owners, and art center executives.
Work by local artists — Diana Woods, Ellen Wilson and Wendy Videlock — will be presented to award recipients.
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