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First Phase Of Art Prize Voting Nearly Over


So, how is Art Prize going so far?  Have you had a chance to look at some of the art and vote?  How is the voting going?  Who are the leaders?

The Grand Rapids Press reported that the Grand Rapids Public Museum on Monday afternoon was leading all of ArtPrize’s 164 venues with the most artists — 16 in all — among the top 25 vote-getters in its respective neighborhood.

With two days left to go in the first round of voting for ArtPrize 2011, the 1,582 artists competing are making the most of their opportunity to chalk up more votes.

ArtPrize this year is listing on its website the top 25 vote-getters in each of the event’s five downtown neighborhoods, plus the five leading pieces at Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park for a total of 130 artists in all.

The 25 in each neighborhood are listed randomly and unranked so the total vote remains unknown.

What’s more, top 25 in the Monroe North/Bellknap Neighborhood, the smallest of the five, are from a pool of 93 entries in 10 venues.

Center City, the neighborhood with the most artists, has 665 in all. The B.O.B. by itself has 100 entries.

Voting ends at 11:59 p.m. Wednesday. The top 10 overall, which will be announced Thursday evening in Rosa Parks Circle, will advance to the next round of voting.

Five days after the Sept. 21 opening of ArtPrize 2011, with more than 210,000 total votes cast as of Monday evening, a few familiar names and faces are in the running for the third competition offering nearly $250,000 in prize money.

Two finalists from ArtPrize 2009 are among the 130 with the highest vote tallies in their respective neighborhoods.

Bill Secunda, of Butler, Pa., who won fifth place in 2009 for his sculpture “Moose” and seventh place last year with “Dancing with Lions,” is among the top 25 in Center City with “Mantis Dreaming” at The B.O.B.

Tracy Van Duinen, a Grand Rapids native now living in Chicago, who won second place in 2009 for “Imagine That!” at the Grand Rapids Children’s Museum, is among the leaders in the Heartside neighborhood with “Metaphorist Project” on the wall of the West Michigan Center for Arts & Technology.

A couple of finalists from ArtPrize 2010 remain popular among voters this year.

Chris LaPorte, of Grand Rapids, who won the $250,000 first prize last year for “Cavalry, American Officers, 1921,” is among Heartside’s top 25 in the popular vote.

Mia Tavonatti, of Santa Ana, Calif., the $100,000 second-place winner last year for her mosaic “Svelata,” and Paul Baliker, the $7,000 fourth-place winner with his sculpture, “A Matter of Time,” both are among Center City’s 25 leaders in the popular vote this past week.

Better hurry if you want your vote to count in this first round of voting.

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