(Columbus, OH)—Fifteen artists were honored with awards of excellence in Ohio Designer Craftsmen’s 25th annual juried members’ competition, “The Best of 2008.” Opening May 4 and continuing through June 22 at the Ohio Craft Museum, the exhi- bition features approximately 130 works in glass, metal, fiber, clay, wood and mixed media by nearly 90 artists. Juror Brion Clinkingbeard, deputy director and curator/ director of exhibitions at the Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft in Louisville, chose the work from over 325 entries by 100 artists. “The greatest pleasure I get as a juror is seeing work by new artists for the first time, and this jury session did not disappoint,” Clinkingbeard commented. Recipient of the Emerging Craftsmen Award, Tadashi Koizumi’s copper and bronze figures “are monumental in their concept and execu- tion, if not their scale,” while Geoff Riggle’s “architectonic jewelry speaks of relation- ships, structural integrity and mastery of materials. It is an intriguing body of work that left me wanting to see more from this talented artist.”

“In the end, the piece for me that best embodies the spirit of creativity as shown by the ‘Best of 2008’ is Dinner Ring for a Last Supper II by Susan Ewing,” Clinking- beard remarked. Recipient of the Pamela Morris Thomford Award for Excellence in Metals, “this one piece was more than enough to make the trip worthwhile. It stands alongside the other works in this show as representing the ‘Best of’ traditions of this powerhouse organization.”

Clinkingbeard chose other award winners as well: The $1000 Challenge Award for Excellence—the exhibition’s top prize—went to Janis Mars Wunderlich for her figura- tive clay sculpture, Laundry Time.

Metalsmith Cynthia Cetlin of Delaware received the Watkins Printing Poster Award for Excel- lence for Necklace #8, and ceramist Julie Byrne of Groveport received the Postcard Award for Excellence for Bang Bang. Winners of cash awards are (name, title of work, award): Susan Ewing, Dinner Ring for a Last Supper II, Pamela Morris Thomford Award for Excellence in Metals; Kaname Takada, Masu Series (ceramics), Jane H. Zimmerman Award for Excellence in Body of Work; Carrie Longley, Double Jar Set, Wooster Functional Ceramics Award for Excellence; Kathleen Hagan, Reflections, Ruth Lantz Award for Excellence in Fiber; Susan Broidy, Body Chair I, Lonsway Memorial Award for Humor in Craft; Mike Wallace, Addiction, Labino Memorial Award for Excellence in Glass; Don Leman, Apex (wood), Barbara Robinson Award for Fine Craft or Traditional Craft; Rita Steffenson, Precarious, Quilt Surface Design International Award; Judy Kahle, The Measure of a Woman, Tracy Ruhlin Memorial Award for Excellence in Fiber; and Tadashi Koizumi, copper and bronze figures, Emerging Craftsmen Award. Leslie Schug’s Apple Pie Betty received the ODC Purchase Award.

Award winners will be honored during the exhibition’s opening reception, to be held May 4 at the Ohio Craft Museum from 1 to 4 p.m. The public is invited.

After closing at the Ohio Craft Museum, the exhibition will travel to the Springfield Museum of Art in Springfield, Ohio, where it will be on view June 28–August 20. Select pieces will then travel to the French Art Colony in Gallipolis, September 5–October 26.

The Ohio Craft Museum is located at 1665 West Fifth Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43212. Park- ing and admission are free. Hours: Monday–Friday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.; Sunday, 1–4 p.m. Closed Saturday. Telephone (614) 486-4402, or see our website www.ohiocraft.org, for further infor- mation. The museum is owned and operated by Ohio Designer Craftsmen and receives ongoing funding from the Ohio Arts Council and the Columbus Foundation.