The annual award is presented to a figurative or realist sculptor who has demonstrated a commitment to sculpting and outstanding ability in his or her body of work. The grant consists of an unrestricted $5,000 cash award, a half-page ad in Fine Art Connoisseur magazine (worth $2,150), and a quarter-page ad in Sculpture Review magazine (worth $545).
Sculptors Tom Durham, Alicia Ponzio and Wesley Wofford served as the 2019 Ettl Grant jury. “Stefanie Rocknak has a distinctive body of work that transcends anatomy and form to elicit a tangible emotional response in the viewer,” says Wofford. “She uses the art of emotion as a way of communicating an idea or narrative that goes beyond the academic and becomes unique in her individuality. Her public works have a strong conceptual approach that is dynamic and thought provoking. We are proud to award her this grant to invest in more explorations of her vision.”
In 2007, National Sculpture Society first recognized Rocknak’s talent in our 74th Annual Awards Exhibition, when she received the Dr. H.A. Fadhli Award for her piece Seeing a Jewel Hang in Ghastly Nights. In 2011, she sculpted Robert Morris, a 9-foot tall bronze permanently installed in The Gori Collection, Fattoria di Celle, Pistoia, Italy. The following year, the Edgar Allan Poe Foundation of Boston, selected Rocknak from a pool of 265 artists to create a bronze statue of Edgar Allan Poe. The resulting life-size sculpture, Poe Returning to Boston, is full of movement. In 2018, she was selected as one of five finalists for the National Native American Veterans Memorial in Washington, DC. In addition to her vocation as a sculptor, Rocknak is Chair and Professor of Philosophy at Hartwick College. She specializes in David Hume and the philosophy of art.
The National Sculpture Society will present the grant on Saturday, June 15, 2019 at the Honors and Awards Dinner. The Dinner is part of the Sculpture Celebration Conference held June 14-16, 2019 in New York City.