On Display April 15 – May 31, 2023

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Introducing Reflections

Reflections can appear in many different forms – they can be both literal or metaphorical. Reflections found in shop windows, still ponds, or on faces in mirrors can surprise and delight. The physical nature of light reflecting changes appearances and reveals unexpected sensations. Reflections can also be internal; emotional, cerebral, or spiritual, bringing back memories or causing new ways of thinking that could change the world or just stay personal. Maryland Federation of Art (MFA) asked artists to show us what reflection means to them. Entry was open to all artists residing internationally. All original 2D or 3D artwork in any media was eligible for this online show. Works selected by the juror will be on display in MFA’s online gallery, Curve Gallery, from April 15 – May 31, 2023. Exhibition Chairs: Richard Niewerth and Wil Scott. 

 Click this icon to view and print the downloadable prospectus.

Juror: Denise Carson, Professor of Painting at the Savannah College of Art and Design

Denise Carson completed both her BFA and MFA at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She is a professor of painting at the Savannah College of Art and Design. Carson has a comprehensive exhibition history, twenty-six international exhibitions (solo and group), seven solo in the United States. Notably, her work was highlighted at the 2001 International Young Art Auction at Sotheby’s in Chicago, New York, and Tel-Aviv, Israel. Her work was also selected for the Southern Edition of New American Paintings. Denise Carson’s work is in the Smithsonian Museum American Art Collection (Denise Falk), The Plaza Hotel in NYC, and numerous private collections in the United States and abroad.

Juror’s Statement

Viewing art is a constant subjective experience. I’m looking for what the artist is trying to say and what they are actually saying about society and the conditions of reflecting the world we live in today.

Artists continue to explore “What is beautiful?” Edmund Burke’s “A Philosophical Enquiry into the Origin of Our Ideas of the Sublime and Beautiful” offers some insight into subjectivity and objectivity. The dichotomy of beauty and the sublime are valuable as artists inquire about their personal artistic applications. 21st century critique artists ask themselves the mystifying question: “Is my work important, significant, and relevant?” Burke alludes to sublime beauty as uncertain, mysterious, and intrepid. The works selected for the show speak to sublime beauty.

Emanuel Kant argues that understanding sublime beauty is to empower reason. Over half of the works in the exhibition were chosen for their multiple levels of appropriation from the original sources of inspiration. Whether it is a reflection, a chance encounter of vague narratives, implying paradox (titles) each artist chose to make the decision to explore reflection from behind their own lens. The most successful works in the show offer more questions with the visual imagery than an answer. Common ambiguity succeeds in creating a visual selection of mysterious depictions beyond the artist’s true intent.

Denise Carson
Reflections Juror 2023


Best in Show

  • Punctum Caecum, photography, Brian Cox

First Prize

  • Pink Fantasy, oil, Rhiannon Valenti

Second Prize

  • Mirror, Mirror…, digital photo, Alan Kolnik

Third Prize

  • Abraham Lincoln Observes 2023 with Furrowed Brow, photography, Suzanne McIntire

Honorable Mention

  • Street-level Madonna, digital photography, Joanna Madloch
  • Everted Sanctuaries VI, single channel video, Ryan Lewis

*Award contributors and recipients will also be listed in the exhibition catalog.

Information for Accepted Artists

Exhibition Schedule

Exhibition Schedule:

  • Dec 14 Online Entry Open for Submissions
  • Feb 8 Entry Deadline
  • Mar 14 Notification @ 5 PM
  • Apr 15 Exhibition Opens Online
  • May 1 Awards Announced @ 5 PM
  • May 31 Last Day of Online Exhibition



MFA shall not be liable for any special or consequential damages that result from the use of, or inability to use, MFA’s online exhibition gallery.



  • Only artists in the 48 contiguous United States may set a price. MFA will reimburse appropriate shipping costs to those artists for online sales shipments.
  • Artist members will retain 75% from sales; non-members will retain 70%.
  • The sale of artwork is taxable and all sales tax processing will be handled by MFA.
  • All other artists must enter Price on Request (POR) and purchase inquiries will be referred by MFA to the artist.
  • MFA asks that artists donate 20% from any sale made through a direct referral from MFA within three months. All donations are used to help defray operating costs of Maryland Federation of Art and are tax-deductible by the artists to the full extent of the law.


All entrants will receive notification by email. Accepted artists will also be posted on MFA’s website. Artists who have unsubscribed from MFA emails will not receive notification. The notice to accepted artists will include specific details and could vary from the prospectus. Please set your email account to recognize notification@mdfedart.org. Contact Circle Gallery if you do not receive notice.