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We are delighted to present the awards winners of our 2022 Members Show!

From the Judge, Michele Poirier Mozzone:

Thank you to Jane Robbins for inviting me to judge this year’s CMPS members’ show! It was an honor to review each one of the 96 entries and encouraging so see that the new Central Massachusetts Pastel Society Members’ Show is so strong. I know what it’s like to put your heart into a painting and how vulnerable you may feel when submitting it to a show. To those just beginning their pastel journey – congratulations for overcoming the negative voices in your head and putting yourself out there! The high quality of work and obvious enthusiasm for this expressive medium within your group is wonderful to see. I had a difficult time narrowing the selections down to just a few. There are many more deserving paintings than there are awards. Thank you again for inviting me, it was a pleasure!

First Place

Mary Villon de Benveniste

The Siblings

Although a traditional depiction of a young brother and sister, the artist has expertly captured the innocence of youth and a unique personality in each expression. I am drawn to this portrait by the decisions the artist has made to keep the palette high-key and limited, contrasting soft, cool notes of the paper and clothing with the warmth in the faces and hair. The artist has edited detail in the lower half of the piece to focus attention on the exquisitely rendered faces. Each has a distinct character, but they are linked by repetition of tone and the slight overlapping of form. This piece – beyond being a lovely portrait – demonstrates a level of skill and decision-making that puts it over the top. A winner! Bravo!

Honorable Mention

Janet Schwartz

Good Day to Stay Inside

This unexpected subject matter might have been easy to pass by except the complimentary color palette grabbed me. I then noticed the beautiful sense of light, confident marks and “unfinished,”raw areas. The use of line is especially nice in this piece – note the sunlit edge of the pillow and the graphite lines in the window moulding. Lost edges work beautifully to convey a ray of sunshine on the arm of the sofa. Layering of complimentary color adds sparkle and life to this quiet interior. Indeed, the perfect spot for a day inside.

Second Place

Allison Krajcik

Coming Together

There were so many exceptional landscape entries to choose from in this show! I kept coming back to this painting for its dynamic energy and contrast of warm and cool. I can feel the solid, sun-warmed rocks and cold rushing water. The artist has chosen the perfect value of blues, purples and greens to push the distant falls into shadow and pull the eye toward the turbulent, sunlit focal point. Expressive, varied mark-making, careful attention to color and value shifts and a great composition is the winning recipe in this piece!

Developing Artist Award

Anne DeBenedictis


This painting is remarkable for the 3D turtle shells that jump off the picture plane! The application of pastel in the shells feels fresh, not overworked. Line and scumbling over the top layers beautifully depict texture and reflected sunlight. The quiet background works well to distinguish the turtles and suggest water. The complimentary palette holds the composition together nicely. Overall, a wonderful piece!

Third Place

Karen Israel

Holding Court

Because the artist chose a palette of predominant muted, dark greys, the child and toys seem to almost glow. The artist carefully avoids being overly sentimental here by rendering with gestural, sketchy marks and omitting all but essential details. Edges are beautifully lost and found and compositional elements direct our attention to the child. Very well done!

Developing Artist, Honorable Mention

Pamela Sorensen

Far Mor's Danish Table

The artist’s decision to place these silver utensils on a colorful cloth was a good one. This afforded a lovely palette of colors to echo throughout the piece. Reflective surfaces such as these are challenging but the artist has done a convincing job of rendering. The cloth is beautifully done and looks to have a satin sheen – a pleasing compliment to the flatware. The title provides us insight into the sentimentality and deeper meaning of these objects for the artist, making the piece even more captivating to the viewer.

<< All album photos 18/96 photos
Dahlia Heat Map by Keith Demanche (NFS)

Some works in our online show are for sale, as indicated. To purchase a painting, please email and we'll put you in touch with the artist! 

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