((L) Poster by Toni Del Guidice, (R) Cascade A&E February 2021 Cover | Poster Image courtesy of Sisters Folk Festival)
Sisters Folk Festival (SFF) is getting ready to host its largest annual fundraiser and community arts celebration, My Own Two Hands (MOTH), taking place virtually May 10-15. Proceeds from the event support SFF’s mission of strengthening community and transforming lives through music and art. Selecting this year’s MOTH award winners was both challenging and humbling with nearly 80 incredible pieces of art donated by generous artists and organizations to choose from. It is with great excitement that we announce this year’s My Own Two Hands awards of excellence.
Ben Westlund Advocate for the Arts Award — Cascade A&E Magazine
Cascade A&E Magazine has been showcasing and promoting the arts and entertainment scene in Central Oregon since 1995, with a beautiful print and online magazine. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the creative economy in a big way, resulting in significant ad revenue loss for the publication over the past year. Despite this challenge, publisher Jeff Martin and his team have soldiered on, even as other arts-focused magazines around the state have folded under the financial strain. Sisters Folk Festival acknowledges Cascade A&E’s generosity toward our organization and many others throughout their 26-year history, and we are thrilled to honor them with the 2021 Ben Westlund Advocate for the Arts Award for their dedication and ongoing contributions to Central Oregon’s thriving arts community.
“The Cascade A&E team is very honored by this award,” said Martin, upon receiving the notification of the honor. “Pamela Hulse Andrews, founder of Cascade Publications, is looking down with much pride and joy. She was good friends with Ben, and while they didn’t always agree, they agreed on the importance of arts and culture in Central Oregon and beyond.”
“We are humbled by this recognition,” said Marcee Hillman Moeggenberg, editor and production director of Cascade Publications. “When the pandemic hit, our focus shifted into how we could best support the artists in our community, as much as they have supported us throughout the years. It is an amazing honor to receive such recognition; Pamela would be so proud.”
Design Award — Toni Del Guidice’s mixed media original, aptly titled Holding Hope
Del Guidice’s original mixed media piece was chosen for the 2021 My Own Two Hands poster art. Del Guidice shares, “Holding Hope is literal to me: Hope for our planet. Hope for the pandemic. Hope for integrity in government. Hope for equity.”
Theme Award — Jan Hansson’s wood sculpture on swiveling platform, Together We Are Hopeful
Hansson states, “Born and raised in Sweden, I am inspired by the clean lines of Scandinavian design. Less can often tell you more. I hope to inspire people to look beyond the sculpture itself.”
Awards of Merit:
- David Rock’s striking acrylic painting on board, Chrysalis.
From Rock, “A monarch butterfly chrysalis. It seems to me to be the epitome of ‘Holding Hope.’ A cocoon is a perfect symbol of the promise of re-creation from old to new, from past to future. Yet the form itself is completely alien to its previous existence or future manifestation. It is at once: sarcophagus, jewel, and egg. The image in this painting is separated from any reference to the natural world so that it can be considered and contemplated on its own.”
- Bob Wade’s ball point drawing of a Sisters Folk Festival fan favorite, Ron Artis II.
Wade describes his use of medium, “I draw the dark and let the light show through.”
- Mary Jo Weiss and Dennis Tower’s collaboration in their beautiful pendant, Hope Grows.
Weiss and Tower have traditionally collaborated for MOTH each year to put together a one-of-a-kind piece of jewelry that combines Tower’s lapidary arts and Weiss’ jewelry design skills. They reflect, “To us, combining beautiful natural stones with outstanding jewelry design brings beauty, inspiration and hope. Of special note, inscribed on the back of the piece through the silver backing is an iris, which is the flower of hope.”
- Lawrence Stoller’s impressive, illuminated gemstone sculpture, Frozen Sky.
Stoller explains, “I was first drawn to working with crystals because of their beauty, mystery, and mysticism. What started as a fascination led me on a verdant path through the fields of mineralogy, technology, art, metaphysics and healing.”
Americana Folk Award — Carly Garzón Vargas for her dynamic papercut, Our Hands, Our Work.
Garzón Vargas shares, “We have a lot of work to do moving towards the world we hope for. These hands hold some of the tools for music making and hope building. I hold onto the hope that we will stay in the struggle and expand who is truly included in our community.”
Spirit of Giving Award — Tony Cosby, the engineering, construction and woods teacher at Sisters High School.
Cosby has provided inspiration and hope for so many aspiring creators, builders and students. He co-created the Americana Luthier Project with Jayson Bowerman at Sisters High school in 2005, and has since built more than 450 handmade acoustic guitars, and helped create the ukulele building program with the late Bill MacDonald, helping to finish some 175 handmade ukuleles built by students. Cosby connects with his students as a friend and mentor and provides for them a “home” in his classroom. He gives tirelessly to the school community. Continually improving and seeking best practices for classroom engagement, Cosby has successfully combined engineering, math, music, construction and adventure recreation for more than two decades to inspire students, showing that the Spirit of Giving is alive and well in this tremendous teacher and friend. Cosby — along with his students and dedicated volunteers — has produced a guitar, an Adirondack chair and/or a ukulele every year for the past ten years in support of My Own Two Hands.
Sisters Folk Festival invites the public to join us for the My Own Two Hands collective show opening on Friday, April 23 from 4-7pm in the Duncan and Cindy Campbell Gallery and upstairs studio space located at the Sisters Art Works building, 204 W Adams Ave. in Sisters. All visitors will be expected to practice social distancing and proper mask wearing at all times while inside the building.
All of the MOTH art will be on display Monday-Friday, 10am-4pm from April 23 through May 14, with private art viewings available outside of those times upon request. Please contact email@example.com to make an appointment. Art lovers are highly encouraged to make time to see all of the amazing artwork that has been so generously donated by the talented 2021 MOTH artists.
High quality photos of the artwork, which will be available to bid on at the online auction platform from May 10-15, will be featured on SFF’s website for virtual viewing beginning April 22. Follow Sisters Folk Festival on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter for up-to-date event information.