Watercolor Society awards HR artist Van Voast

Winning painting was one of nearly 200 entries judged

Hood River artist Dick Van Voast was awarded first place in the Watercolor Society of Oregon’s fall 2002 show.

Van Voast’s painting was one of 199 entries submitted to the organization.

Eighty paintings were selected for the 37th annual Transparent Watercolor Exhibition that was displayed at the Riversea Gallery in Astoria. The 20 award winning paintings — including Van Voast’s — are now touring the state.

The Watercolor Society of Oregon has more than 800 members who exhibit their work and encourage education about watercolor art. This year’s show was juried by Dale Laitinen, a signature member of the National Watercolor Society and Watercolor West.

Van Voast, who has lived in Hood River for 15 years, has “worked in art” all his life — mostly in commercial and advertising art. He began working as a fine artist in 1991, when he became “addicted” to watercolor. He now paints in his attic studio.

Since joining the Watercolor Society in 1996, Van Voast has won honors in the annual show four times — including the overall sweepstakes award.

Van Voast paints a variety of subjects, but favors wildlife. Many of his paintings come out of observing wildlife at his beach house at Neskowin.

“I also like bright colors,” he said. “That’s why I do flowers a lot.” Each of his award-winning watercolors has been of flowers.

Van Voast’s award winning painting — along with the top 20 from the Watercolor Society show — will be displayed at the Columbia Art Gallery Feb. 6-25, 2003.

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