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  • Writer's pictureIssis Macias

Forward Art Prize Finalist, Issis Macias!

Last Thursday, not only did I have the honor of sharing space with 44 artists in the group applicant exhibition, titled "Women's Work" at Arts + Literature Laboratory, but I was also selected as one of the five finalists: @inspiritartist @kautzart @hklebesadel @tl.luke for the prestigious 2023 Forward Art Prize!

Photos: 1. (Left to right) WAFF Co-Founder Brenda Baker, Mary Bero, Rebecca Kautz, Jessica Gutierrez, Babette Wainwright, WAFF Co-founder Bird Ross, and Issis Macias. 2. Finalists Jessica Gutierrez, Rebecca Kautz and Issis Macias. Finalists Helen Klebesadel and T.L. Luke not present. 3. Finalists Issis Macias, Jessica Gutierrez and Rebecca Kautz

As a creative mother, first-generation Mexican American, and self-taught artist, this recognition touches the depths of my soul like a bolt of electricity. I am overwhelmed with deep feelings of gratitude. I would not be here without my husband's unconditional love and support, and the endless inspiration I receive from my little muse, Inez.

Photos of Issis Macias and daughter, Inez.

My art journey continues to remind me that I am on the right path. I feel seen and loved. Thank you art lovers, collectors, friends and family for your unconditional support!

I am especially grateful to the Women Artists Forward Fund co-founders Brenda Baker and Bird Ross. It is because of their vision and passion for the arts that women artists like myself are being recognized and supported in incredible ways.

A huge thank you to all those who worked behind the scenes to make this prize possible - Arts + Literature Laboratory (Jolynne Roorda and team), Dane Arts (Mark Fraire and Augusta Brulla), jurors (Simona Chazen, Alice Traore, Nancy Mladenoff, Kelli Kadokawa, and Melanie Herzog), and Sarah Stankey for curating and installing the artworks by this years Forward Art Prize applicants.

Congratulations to the 2023 Forward Prize winners, Mary Bero and Babette Wainwright who are phenomenal! Their art and journeys serve as an inspiration for every artist to keep creating because the world needs us right now.

Read more about the 2023 Forward Art Prize in The Capital Times.

Photos of Mary Bero and Babette Wainwright at the Forward Art Prize 2023 reception.

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