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Judges Panel

Our selection panel and juried panel bring together a diverse group of curators, art professionals, and art enthusiasts.

2020 Selection Panel

Selection Panel | Atlanta, GA

Shanequa Gay

Citizen Artist

Shanequa Gay, an Atlanta native, received her MFA at Georgia State University. Gay was one of ten selected artists for OFF THE WALL a city-wide Mural initiative led by WonderRoot and the Atlanta Super Bowl Host Committee (2019). In 2013, Gay was chosen by The Congressional Club to be the illustrator for the First Lady's Luncheon hostess gift for First Lady Michelle Obama. Gay is a 2019 Do Good Fellow. Gay's work includes television and film features. She has presented her work in various solo and group exhibitions locally and nationally at venues including Art Basel Miami (2018). Residencies include Independent Study, Iwakuni, Japan (2014); The Creatives Project Artist-in-Studio Program, The Goat Farm Arts Center, Atlanta, GA (2015) (2017); and Baldwin's Room Artist in Residence, Johannesburg, South Africa (2017).

Gay’s work evaluates place, tradition, storytelling, and the experiences of African-Ascendant people to develop imaginative dialogues and alternative strategies for self-imaging by uprooting social proscriptions and challenging political norms; by exploring the historic and contemporary social concerns of hybrid cultures through the gaze of the African-Ascendant female progenitor and multimedia exploration. She creates ritual, community, and healing through new pathways for a nation of people to cope.

Selection Panel | Los Angeles, CA

Erika Hirugami

Founder and CEO of CuratorLove

Hirugami holds an MA in Art Business from the Sotheby’s Institute of Art, in conjunction with the Drucker School of Management and Getty Leadership Institute at Claremont Graduate University. As well as multiple BAs from UCLA in the fields of Art History, Chicano Studies, and Mexican Studies. She is currently a doctoral student at UCLA, where she challenges the convergence of transnational aesthetics with a special focus on undocumented experiences.

As a Getty and Kress Foundation Fellow Hirugami has developed curatorial statements at museums such as CMA, MOLAA, MAZ, MUAC, and Bellas Artes, in Mexico City. After being a Public Art Curator for the Department of Cultural Affairs in the City of Los Angeles, Hirugami became the Curatorial Director for the Ronald McDonald House Charities, and later the Curatorial Director of The KNOW Contemporary while becoming a visiting Lecturer for Universities across the United States. She has curated exhibitions for multiple spaces across the globe, and her written work has been published internationally.

Selection Panel | Washington, DC

Don Kimes

Senior Full Professor of Art at American University

As an artist, Don Kimes' work has been included in more than 50 solo and 100 group exhibitions internationally. He is currently the senior Full Professor of Art at American University in Washington, DC where he served as head of the studio art program for 19 of the past 30 years (and department chair for 11 years). Additionally, Kimes is Chair of the Board of Advisors for the DC and International edition of The New Art Examiner, an historic publication which currently has editorial staff in New York City, Washington, DC, Toronto, Detroit, Berlin, Rome, Paris, London, Southeast Asia and other locations internationally.

In 2018 he was named the inaugural Sonkin-Segal Endowed Chair in the Visual Arts at the the Chautauqua Institution, where he had served as Artistic Director in the visual Arts for more than three decades (the first endowed artistic director position in the 144 year history of that venerable institution). Kimes' curatorial practice is extensive, having organized dozens of major exhibitions throughout the United States and internationally over the past 30+ years. As an educator and cultural builder he is in his fourth decade as a practicing artist who also teaches: more than 5,000 art students have worked with him directly, and many thousands more indirectly, in the programs he has built and led in New York, Washington, DC and Italy.

Selection Panel | Dothan, AL

Dana Lemmer

Executive Director & Curator of the Wiregrass Museum of Art

Dana-Marie Lemmer is the executive director and curator of the Wiregrass Museum of Art (WMA) in Dothan, AL, where she oversees the strategic vision, administration, and artistic direction of the organization.  She specializes in building relationships between artists and institutions and works to build meaningful connections with the audience through diverse public programming.  She curated Alabama Reckoner, featuring the work of Douglas Pierre Baulos, and has contributed to the publication Alabama Creates: 200 Years of Alabama Art. Upcoming projects include Synchronized Swimmers, a continuation of her work with artist Jenny Fine which also includes Flat Granny and Me: A Procession in My Mind and In Unison, and the museum’s biennial exhibition B20:Wiregrass Biennial which features dozens of artists from the Southeast.

Prior to her role at WMA, she served as the director of global operations for Slow Art Day, an annual event encouraging art appreciation through nontraditional programming, and where she worked with over 300 museums and galleries. She worked with ROLLO Contemporary Art in London, England which featured a roster of international art and artists, and the Florida Attractions Association in Tallahassee, FL where she partnered with professionals across the state's tourism industry.

Lemmer is a published writer and has curated independent projects focusing on various professional interests including: the (under)representation of emerging and female artists; regionalism and contemporary practice in the South; developing interpretive strategies through technology; and creative placemaking as a catalyst in social and economic development.

Selection Panel | Charleston, WV

Renee Margocee

Executive Director of the Tamarack Foundation for the Arts

Renée Margocee has served as the Executive Director of the Tamarack Foundation for the Arts since March 2017. Renée received her B.A. in English Literature from Marshall University and studied ceramics at West Virginia University. With a background in liberal arts and arts administration, she is also an accomplished ceramic artist. She is at the forefront of growing West Virginia’s creative economy by promoting quality of life, economic development, social equity and connecting artists and creatives to their communities in new ways that truly raise the value of art and creativity. Her nonprofit affiliations include Americans for the Arts West Virginia State Captain for National Arts Advocacy, the Friends of West Virginia Public Radio, BB&T Community Development Committee, National Consortium for Creative Placemaking 2018 Leadership Summit Planning Committee, and grant reviewer for the National Endowment for the Arts, the Mid-Atlantic Foundation, the Kentucky Arts Council and the Beckley Area Foundation.

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