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Nelson County High School teacher’s art featured in Venice exhibit of world-wide artists

Two visual images of a painting by Nelson County High School art teacher are on display in a world-wide art exhibit in Venice. Photo courtesy of the Biennial 2024 Project.”

 Nelson County High School art teacher Terry Ward’s art has been on display among world-wide artists in The Biennial Project’s “Biennial 2024 at the Venice Biennale.”

Two digital images by Ward of his multi-panel mixed-media painting made a final cut and will be on display through November 24, 2024. Ward said the online presence of the exhibit is expected to remain viewable.

The Biennial Project’s “Biennial 2024 at the Venice Biennale” includes video projections at certain galas and in some of the city’s outdoor public squares during the Venice Biennale.  Ward’s two images will be in the slideshow along with images made by more than 130 other winning artists from around the world.

“My messy mixed-media paintings usually have lots of smushy brushstrokes plus areas of collaged-in bits of books or documents. I found a wonderfully-weird 1890s health and exercise manual made by the historical anti-alcohol crusaders of the Temperance Movement.  The old book’s illustrations show people assuming strange positions while exercising in their Victorian-era clothing. I liked the goofy and dated look of the full-body striped bathing suits and such. I knew it had to go into some paintings. Officially, most of my painting series can be called Untitled, but they also have nicknames. While making Untitled / Series 646, I started pondering some bad effects from years of my unwise health choices and I decided this series’ nickname/s could be: ‘So Much Advice / Cannot Say I Was Not Warned.'” Ward said of the inspiration for his art.

Ward’s actual paintings are six-and-a-half feet by 1′.  The images in the exhibit are photographic close-ups of the paintings’ details.

Ward said his art has been on display at MoMA, The Corcoran and a Smithsonian-affiliate, as well as on digital highway billboards from Chicago to Los Angeles. Four museums plus Al Gore and Jimmy Carter own Ward art, as do famed artists Sally Mann and Cy Twombly. He had a solo in the New York Mercantile Exchange in the World Trade Center/World Financial Center complex and another solo at an accredited regional museum. By invitation, the artist made the “largest legal street art roof mural in New York City.”

Ward’s blog is available online.

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca J. Barnabi is the national editor of Augusta Free Press. A graduate of the University of Mary Washington, she began her journalism career at The Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star. In 2013, she was awarded first place for feature writing in the Maryland, Delaware, District of Columbia Awards Program, and was honored by the Virginia School Boards Association’s 2019 Media Honor Roll Program for her coverage of Waynesboro Schools. Her background in newspapers includes writing about features, local government, education and the arts.