Local wins in national competition…againJudy Ritger of River Falls, won the Best of Show Award in the “National Exhibition of Folk Art in the Norwegian Tradition” at Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum.
Judy Ritger of River Falls, won the Best of Show Award in the “National Exhibition of Folk Art in the Norwegian Tradition” at Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum.
This exhibition is Vesterheim’s major summer show and was held June 7-July 28. The awards were announced in conjunction with Decorah’s Nordic Fest celebration July 26-28.
Ritger won the Best of Show in rosemaling with a corner cupboard painted in the Gudbrandsdal style. Most rosemalers paint in a style specific to one of the different areas of Norway, and each style has very distinct characteristics.
“Rosemaling developed in Norway about 200 years ago, and was revived by Norwegian Americans in about 1930,” Vesterheim Curator Laurann Gilbertson said.
“It continues to be one of the most popular and refined of the Norwegian arts and crafts in this country,” she added.
The exhibition also includes woodworking, weaving, and knifemaking. Vesterheim, established the rosemaling exhibition at the first Decorah Nordic Fest in 1967 and added weaving, woodworking, and knifemaking in later years.
“Some of the best practitioners of these traditional Norwegian arts enter the exhibition, which attracts national attention,” Gilbertson said. “This year’s exhibition included over 150 pieces of beautiful contemporary folk art.”
Each year, judges award blue, red, and white ribbons representing points that accumulate over successive exhibitions toward a Vesterheim gold medal.
Ritger is a Vesterheim gold medalist and has earned national awards in several other years. Judges also present Honorable Mention Awards and Best of Show Awards.