Strange Bird Landing takes Best in Show Award

The St. Augustine Art Association presented awards to ten artists featured in the “Not-So-Still Life” Exhibition, on display at 22 Marine Street through February 25th.  St. Augustine artist Nancy Hamlin-Vogler won the Jean Wagner Troemel Best in Show Award for her mixed media work entitled, “Strange Bird Landing”.

The top prize was established by the late Jean Wagner Troemel, who attended the monthly award ceremonies at the St. Augustine Art Association for nearly ten years, prior to her death on January 18, at the age of 96.  Troemel was a celebrated artist, benefactor and art advocate.

“I am so humbled and grateful to receive such an important award,” Hamlin-Vogler told local Historic City News reporters.  “This is a real honor. Jean was our inspiration.”

The first-place award was given to David Menichiello for his mixed media painting, “Still Life Reflections.”  John Gamache received second place for “Fleurs dans une Cuvette Jaune,” a floral oil painting. Iryna Hamill took third place for “Sweet Morning,” a miniature food-inspired pastel, and Xi Guo was honored with fourth place for “Tangle #8,” a watercolor.

Toni DeWitt, Elaine Stecker, Randon Eddy, Joseph Paul Getchius and Sharon Belinski received honorable mentions. Award sponsor Karen Zander, owner of 97 Park Realty, handed out the artistic excellence awards.

Gretchen Ebersol judged the exhibition, which consists of nearly 80 pieces that push the boundaries of the still life genre.  “There are stellar works of art in this exhibit and a diversity of interpretations that give a fresh perspective to what could be a very predictable theme,” said Ebersol.

Installed by a team of volunteers under the direction of Bill and Marcia Pappas, the exhibition is open free to the public.  Gallery hours are noon to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and 2 to 5 p.m. on Sunday.  For information, call (904) 824-2310 or log on to

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