Public voting wrapped up May 18th in the competition for adult artists with disabilities, which is co-sponsored by Legacy Trust and Artists Creating Together, formerly VSA Michigan-Grand Rapids. Each Legacy Trust Award Collection winner received a cash prize and will be entered in ArtPrize 2012. Cooper, who was selected by a panel of celebrity judges, was also one of the top vote-getters in the 2010 LTAC competition.
“We were very pleased once again with the results of the LTAC competition and the winning pieces,” said Bill Walker, CEO and president of Legacy Trust. “Many tremendously talented artists submitted to the growing competition and the three winning pieces are particularly impressive works. I am always inspired by this competition and so glad to be able to host it. I look forward to sharing these works with the rest of Grand Rapids and visitors to the area during ArtPrize 2012.”
The three recipients of top honors in the Legacy Trust Award Collection include:
• Lane C. Cooper, who displayed "Dining on the Grand," a work created with found objects. Cooper, originally from Ludington and now a resident of Freeport, was in a severe car accident in 2003 that left him with a closed-head injury. In order to cope with violent headaches, he used his talents with welding to create sculptures. He has won awards at Festival for his artwork. He also sells his pieces through his Freeport business.
• David Chupp, who displayed "Formosa Arena," an intricate sand painting. Chupp, a resident of Kentwood, Mich., has been creating art since he was a teenager. He was introduced to the Navajo art of sand painting while on vacation in New Mexico during that time and was inspired to begin working with sand as an art medium. Ten years ago, he suffered a closed head injury in an accident that occurred while he was fixing a tractor. Chupp has had to overcome several challenges that resulted from his brain injury, including the loss of a photographic memory. One thing that did not change, however, was his love of art. Today he is a full-time artist working primarily in acrylic, sand painting and sand sculptures.
• Leanne Vandenbos, who displayed "Untitled," a mixed media painting that is a tribute to her dog, Baggins. The Grand Rapids resident, who has learning and developmental disabilities, has been expanding her experience as an artist through her involvement with Artist Creating Together, or ACT, over the past six years. Vandenbos began participating in ACT art classes through her Kent Vocation Options School in Grand Rapids. Since graduating, she has continued as a participant in ACT’s graduated art adult classes and as a volunteer. She also takes private lessons with a local professional artist to further hone her skill. She enjoys all mediums of visual art, however, her work focuses primarily on painting.
ArtPrize, an international art competition in Grand Rapids decided solely on a public vote, returns on Sept. 19-Oct. 7 for the fourth year. Part arts festival and part social dialogue, ArtPrize attracted submissions from more than 1,800 artists – and tens of thousands of supporters – from around the globe.
About Legacy Trust
Legacy Trust is an independent, locally owned, Michigan-chartered bank that specializes in providing investment and wealth-management services to individuals, families, foundations and non-profits in West Michigan. Legacy Trust delivers highly customized financial and investment solutions tailored to meet the unique situation of each client. For more information, visit us at www.legacygr.com.
About Artists Creating Together
Artists Creating Together is a non-profit organization that brings children, youth and adults with disabilities together with artists, the arts and art projects. Formerly known as VSA/Very Special Arts, Artists Creating Together has been a part of the Kent County landscape since 1986. Today, Artists Creating Together helps more than 6,000 individuals from West and Northwest Michigan celebrate, succeed and grown with art. Since its inception, Artists Creating Together has benefitted more than 20,000 individuals with disabilities from throughout West Michigan. For more information, please find us on our website at www.artistscreatingtogether.org or call us at 616.885.5866.