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The Yankee Express

Sixth Annual Fine Art and Photography juried exhibition

The 2023 Small Stones Festival of the Arts announces a new schedule for the Sixth Annual Fine Art and Photography juried exhibition with run dates of December 8 – 17 at the Grafton Public Library, 35 Grafton Common, Grafton, MA. The Festival opens with the reception and awards ceremony from 7-8 p.m. on December 8. The free exhibit is open to the public.
The Festival’s exhibit schedule has been changed to accommodate scheduled remediation work required in the Library’s community meeting room due to the unprecedented August flood.
The exhibit is open daily from 12 – 4 p.m. with extended hours on Saturday, December 9, Friday, December 15 and Saturday December16 until 6:00 p.m.
Artist and juror presentation dates will be announced soon. Artists will discuss their inspiration and the techniques used in their work. The jurors will explain their thoughts and perspectives on the juried art exhibit and provide insights on why they liked their favorite artwork.
The Blackstone Valley Art Association and the Worcester County Camera Club have collaborated to create one of the region’s largest juried exhibitions to provide a venue to showcase artists’ work and to elevate the practice and appreciation of fine art.
This year the festival received a generous festival grant of $2,500 from the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency as well as additional grants provided by the towns of Grafton’s and Millbury’s cultural councils administered through the nonprofit organization.
A distinguished panel of six jurors (three for each category) have selected 144 works to appear in the exhibit and printed catalog. The hardback exhibit catalog is for sale online and at the festival. All submissions meeting minimum requirements are featured in the Festival’s web gallery.
 Awards are given for both fine art and photography categories. Cash prizes of $500 for first; $250 for second; and $100 for third are awarded. Additionally, each of the six jurors selects a Juror’s Choice. The public votes for a Popular Choice winner in each category.
This year’s masterful fine art jurors include Michael Rose, gallery manager of the historic well-known Providence Art Club since 2014, art historian, gallerist and popular ‘Inside Art’ columnist; Glenn Murray, a traditionally trained, award winning contemporary realist painter whose work is included in numerous private collections and has received many international and national competition awards; and Kim Morin Weineck, an artist who works in all fine art mediums, is signature member of the Pastel Painters Society of Cape Cod and whose artwork is widely collected and exhibited.
The photography jurors are accomplished photographers – Ron Rosenstock, a highly regarded professional whose work is in the collections of the Fogg Art Museum, the Worcester Art Museum and the International Center of Photography as well as many private ones; Shane Gutierrez, a master working in portraiture, corporate, product and architectural photography for over 40 years with a variety of film cameras, plastic and digital cameras; and Tom Nault, a professional commercial and fine art photographer who presents the unique in a setting, forcing the viewer to step back to see the image clearer and is adjunct professor at New England Institute of Technology.
The mission of the Small Stones Festival of the Arts is to elevate the practice and appreciation of fine art and photography in the Blackstone Valley and beyond. The Festival is under the aegis of fiscal sponsor, Grafton Arts, Inc., a nonprofit 501 (c) 3 organization.
Small Stones Festival of the Arts has been awarded grants from the Mass Cultural Council and the cultural councils of Grafton and Millbury. Donations from Homefield Credit Union, The Town House Tavern, One Grafton Common and Yesod Foundation, Inc. also made the Festival of the Arts possible. 
Financial support from community businesses has included Art and Frame Emporium, Gaudette Insurance Agency, JCSI, Pepperoni Express, Roney Funeral Home, Mathieu Newton Sotheby’s International Realty – Sydney Padgett, Theroux Dental Associates, Touchstone Crystal – Kathleen Schaker and the Uncommon Cow. For more information, visit