July 17 - September 26, 2020
B20: Wiregrass Biennial is a juried exhibition that encourages innovative and progressive work and showcases the South’s most talented contemporary artists, illustrating the region’s rich cultural heritage. Selected work utilizes a variety of art forms and media, including paintings, sculptures, mixed media, new media, and installation art. Three jurors chose from a field of over 130 entries for this year’s exhibition — the first virtual exhibition ever for WMA — featuring 39 artists from 11 states.
B20: Wiregrass Biennial is being held online this year due to the ongoing need for physical distancing in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Artists would normally travel from around the Southeast to deliver and install their work, attend the traditional exhibition opening, and hold in-person artist talks and workshops. This year’s online presentation will give the public new ways to engage with artists, with plans for virtual artist talks, online workshops, virtual studio tours, artist conversations, and social media takeovers. All programming will be archived on the website alongside the virtual exhibition.
Rather than postponing or cancelling B20, WMA made the decision to hold the exhibition in a new format, recognizing the benefit of providing exposure for participating artists, especially those who may be at the beginning of their careers. This platform to introduce their work to new audiences is especially important now as exhibitions and gallery shows have been cancelled throughout the country.
WMA will present five awards to this year’s participating artists: the Judge’s Award ($1,000); the new Alabama Award ($1,000), which will be given to an Alabama artist in the show; and three People’s Choice awards.
The winners of the Alabama and Judge’s awards will be selected by B20 judge Jackie Clay, the executive director at the Coleman Center for the Arts, a contemporary art space in York, Alabama. The People’s Choice Award will be decided through online voting by the public from the exhibition’s opening date through September 26. In addition to the $1,000 prize for the work that receives the most votes, a second and third place prize of $500 has been added this year to provide additional financial support to artists during these challenging economic times. The awards are intended to give artists funding to continue to develop new work and support their studio practice.
Featured Artists Include:
This exhibition has been made possible by grants from the Alabama State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts.