Top 5 winners won honorariums of $500 each.

The Kent Arts Commission is pleased to announce winners of the most recent exhibit on Kent Creates, the web platform for sharing art, culture, and creative endeavors.

Kent Creates: Almost Home by Mary Ann Cagley
Kent Creates: Almost Home by Mary Ann Cagley. Courtesy of Kent Arts Commission and Kent Creates.

The “Home” exhibit asked the community to respond to the prompt, “What does home mean to you?” The exhibit was open January through March 2017, and it received 33 submission, including paintings, photographs, drawings, collages, poems and dance pieces.

The Kent Arts Commission voted on submissions and, in keeping with the Commission’s commitment to pay artists for their work, the top five pieces receive $100 honorariums. The winners’ work also appears on the featured carousel on the Kent Creates homepage.

The five winners from the “Home” Exhibit are:

  • Mary Ann Cagley for “Almost Home” (encaustic photo transfer),
  • Sheldon Ickes for “Home out in the Cold” (acrylic painting),
  • Naoko Morisawa for “Memory of Home” and “Home: My Town as far as I know” (mosaic collage), and
  • Liza Ruest for “Building Blocks” (digital collage).

The entire exhibit, as well as the five winning pieces, can be viewed at

Mary Ann Cagley, a Kent-based artist working in encaustic – a medium using layers of bee’s wax, says of her work, “I can spend hours, always amazed at how the melted wax medium and color move, merge and flow together.”

Sheldon Ickes is another Kent-based artist, known for both drawing and painting.

Naoko Morisawa was born in Tokyo and now lives and works in Seattle. Her wood mosaics are hand-made of thousands of very small slices of natural and oil-dyed wood chips. “When seen from a distance, my artwork looks like a painting,” Morisawa explains. “The details of the work and mosaic technique slowly emerge when viewers come closer.”

Bellevue-based artist Liza Ruest creates digital collage with a warm color palette and a sense of place and history. She describes her work as “multilayered” and says “my degree in computer science, with electives in art, have come together again in this digital world.”

Kent Creates is a community of imagination and inspiration for anyone who creates or seeks to be inspired by creativity. Creative work of all kinds may be shared on Kent Creates is free to use and anyone can sign up; there is no requirement to live in Kent, Washington.

Contributed by Ronda Billerbeck, Cultural Programs Manager, for the City of Kent

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