December 29, 2011

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The Association for Visual Arts late last week announced Laura Linz of Greenville, S.C., has been selected as the organization’s new major projects manager, which includes the role of director of the 4 Bridges Arts Festival, replacing outdoing director Jerry Dale McFadden, who has relocated to Florida.

“Laura brings the highest level of enthusiasm, professionalism and experience to the table,” AVA executive director Anne Willson said. “We have the utmost confidence in her ability to make the 4 Bridges Arts Festival the best it can be.”

Linz, who graduated from Furman University with a degree in studio art, has worked in the arts community for nearly a decade and has a comprehensive background in nonprofit arts management and in directing art festivals. She has she been executive director for two nonprofit art organizations and served as festival director for three major arts and crafts festivals.

The jurying process for selecting artists to exhibit in the 4 Bridges Arts Festival occurred on Dec. 10 and 11, just two weeks after Linz began in her new position. About 700 applicants vied for a spot in the festival, of which the three-person jury selected approximately 175 artists from the pool. The jurors for 2012 included Daniel Stetson, Sylvie Fortin and Amy Pleasant.

Stetson, director of the Hunter Museum of American Art, came to Chattanooga earlier this year from the Polk Museum of Art in Lakeland, Fla., where he served as executive director for nearly 15 years. A native of Oneida, N.Y, Stetson holds a bachelor’s degree in art history from SUNY Potsdam and a master of fine arts from Syracuse University.

Fortin, editor-in-chief of Art Papers Magazine, is an independent curator, art historian, critic and editor who has worked internationally since 1991. Fortin studied art history and theory at the University of Toronto, Université Laval and Duke University. She has received numerous grants and awards as a critic and curator, as well as for her academic research. Fortin was named Lexus Leader of the Arts in December 2007.

Pleasant received her bachelor of fine arts degree from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and her master’s from The Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia. She has held solo exhibitions at Jeff Bailey Gallery, The Birmingham Museum of Art, The Atlanta Contemporary Art Center, Rhodes College, Tandem Gallery, The Ruby Green Center for Contemporary Art and the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

“The expertise of this jury is at the highest level we have ever had,” Willson said. “We will undoubtedly have a standout festival this year.”

December 29, 2011

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