2013 Bethesda Painting Awards Finalists

Joan Belmar, Takoma Park, MD
Joan Belmar was born in Santiago, Chile, and came to Washington, D.C. in 1999. Belmar's work is in the permanent collections of the DCCAH Art Bank; the District of Columbia's Wilson Building; the Airport Art Collection in Ibiza, Spain and the Union of Concerned Scientists permanent collection in Washington, D.C. His work has also been shown in national and international exhibits. Belmar was a Mayor's Award Finalist in 2007 as an outstanding emerging artist in Washington, D.C. Additionally, the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities awarded him an artist fellowship grant in 2009. In 2010, the Maryland Arts Council awarded Belmar a 2010 Individual Artist grant in Visual Arts: Painting.

Dennis Farber, Lutherville, MD
Dennis Farber’s work has been exhibited regularly in the United States and abroad. It was included in MoMA's millennial exhibition, OPEN ENDS, 1960- present, Innocence and Experience, and has been included in major museum exhibitions and traveled by both the Museum of Modern Art and the Jewish Museum in New York. Farber's work is in permanent collections of major museums, universities and corporations around the United States. Dennis Farber has been a professor at Maryland Institute College of Art since 1998. Prior to working at MICA, Farber taught at the University of New Mexico, New York University and Claremont Colleges in Claremont, CA. 
Christine Gray, Alexandria, VA
Christine Gray received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from The University of Texas at Austin and a Master of Fine Art from the University of California, Santa Barbara. She is currently a Visiting Artist at the George Washington University. Gray has participated in a number of group exhibitions across the United States, most recently at Torrance Art Museum in Torrance, CA and Salisbury University Art Galleries in Salisbury, MD. She received Dean's Faculty Research Grant from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2011. She has also received the Jentel Foundation Residency Fellowship, Golden Foundation Fellowship, 7 Below Arts Initiative Residency Fellowship, and more.

Hedieh Ilchi, Rockville, MD
Hedieh Ilchi was born in Tehran, Iran and draws her artistic intentions directly from her dual cultural identity as an Iranian/American. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts with honors from the Corcoran College of Art + Design and her Master of Fine Arts in Studio Art from the American University. Ilchi has received many awards and was recently selected as the semifinalist for the eighth annual Janet & Walter Sondheim Artscape Prize. She is currently an artist in residence at the Arlington Arts Center in Arlington, VA. Ilchi has shown her work in numerous group exhibitions in the Washington D.C. area. and had a recent solo exhibition at the Contemporary Wing gallery. 


Barry Nemett, Stevenson, MD
Barry Nemett has received numerous awards, including The Hugh Fraser Foundation, Ford Foundation Grant, MICA Trustee Grant for Excellence in Teaching and Maryland State Arts Council Individual Fellowship Grant. Nemett has curated numerous traveling exhibitions and has exhibited his own work nationally and internationally. His publications include: Images, Objects, and Ideas: Viewing the Visual Arts and Crooked Tracks and has published articles in Arts Magazine, Museum & Arts: WashingtonNew Art ExaminerWashington Review, Baltimore magazine, Forays Review and many artist catalogue essays. Barry Nemett studied at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, received his Bachelor of Fine Arts at Pratt Institute and his Masters of Fine Arts at Yale University. Nemett has been a Visiting Artist and Artist in Residence at numerous colleges, universities and programs in the United States, Japan, Italy and Scotland. 

Cara Ober, Baltimore, MD
Cara Ober earned a Master of Fine Arts in painting from the Maryland Institute College of Art and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from American University. Cara writes art reviews for The Urbanite Magazine and ArtNews Magazine, and publishes her own award-winning art blog, BmoreArt.
Ober is commercially represented by Civilian Art Projects in Washington, D.C., with solo exhibits in 2012 and 2009. She has participated in numerous international art fairs and her work has been featured in The Washington PostThe Baltimore SunWashingtonian Magazine and US News and World Report. In 2009, Ober received a “Best Of Baltimore” award from Baltimore Magazine, which called her “practically an art scene unto herself.” In 2007, Ober took second prize in the Bethesda Painting Awards, after being a finalist in 2006. 


Erin Raedeke, Gaithersburg, MD

Erin Raedeke earned a Bachelor of Fine Art from Indiana University and a Master of Fine Art from American University. She has participated in exhibitions at many galleries in the United States and London. Raedeke is a 2013 winner of the Maryland State Arts Council Individual Artist Award. Past honors and awards include a Carnegie Melon research grant, William H. Calfee Foundation Painting Award, Merit Scholarship at American University, First Prize in Particular Places and a Creative Arts Research Grant at Indiana University.


Bill Schmidt, Baltimore, MD
Bill Schmidt has exhibited his artwork extensively in the Mid-Atlantic region. He has received numerous grants and awards including two Maryland State Arts Council Individual Artist Awards. In 2004 he attended the Alfred and Trafford Klots Residency Program in Rochefort-en-Terre, France. Schmidt studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Skowhegan, ME before moving to Baltimore in 1969. He received a Master of Fine Art from the Hoffberger School of Painting at Maryland Institute College of Art in 1971. In 2007, he was named the Director of the Post-Baccalaureate Program at the Maryland Institute College of Art after being its Resident Artist since 1996. 


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