Michigan Fine Arts Competition returns to BBAC

By: Tiffany Esshaki | Birmingham - Bloomfield Eagle | Published June 24, 2015

 Bloomfield Hills artist Helen Vlasic entered her charcoal portrait, titled “George,” into the annual Michigan Fine Arts Competition, on display throughout the summer at the Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center.

Bloomfield Hills artist Helen Vlasic entered her charcoal portrait, titled “George,” into the annual Michigan Fine Arts Competition, on display throughout the summer at the Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center.

Photo provided by PublicCity PR

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BIRMINGHAM — Aren’t we lucky?

The 33rd annual Michigan Fine Arts Competition — which draws talent from across the state and as far as Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin — will again be shown right in our own backyard at the Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center.

The annual juried competition opened to the public last Friday and will remain on exhibition at the Art Center through Aug. 28. This year’s show features 104 works created by 95 artists in 57 cities across five states.

BBAC President and CEO Annie VanGelderen said the exhibit is always a popular event for the Art Center, drawing lots of visitors wanting to get a look at original works of local, contemporary art.

“For art enthusiasts and casual observers alike, it’s exhilarating to see more than 100 works of art created just within the past year,” said VanGelderen in a prepared statement. “It’s always inspiring to see what new techniques and perspectives are represented, and (it’s) definitely a show not to be missed.”

Helen Vlasic, of Bloomfield Hills, takes classes at the BBAC and decided this year to submit a piece of work to the MFAC for the first time. Her charcoal portrait, titled “George,” will be on display throughout the summer as part of the exhibition.

“I’ve been drawing for 40 years, with what I call a big 25-year gap in the middle there where I was working and raising kids,” said Vlasic with a laugh. “I took a couple classes in college, but I didn’t major in art. But I love it. I love that you look really, really deep into the subject and pull out what’s important to you,” said Vlasic, who has a background in business.

Just before the exhibit opened last week, the winners of the competition were announced, taking away $5,000 in cash prizes. Chicago oil painter Zachary Williams took the top spot. Among the seven other winners was Rochester Hills’ Brian Caponi.

All MFAC-related events are free and open to the public. For more information, call (248) 644-0866 or visit BBArtCenter.org/MFAC.

The Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center is located at 1516 Cranbrook Road in Birmingham.

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