Meghann Hlibichuk, art senior at MSUM, was chosen to show one of her paintings at the North Dakota Museum of Art’s Fifteenth Annual Autumn Art Auction in Grand Forks last Saturday at 6:30 p.m.
The Autumn Art Auction is an annual live auction celebrating artists from the region. The auction was created in order to develop a buyer’s market for artists living in North Dakota and the surrounding region. In addition, the auction’s goals are to exemplify local artists, help them sell their work and get their name known.
Hlibichuk’s piece is an abstract oil and acrylic painting titled “Athazagor.”
“My paintings are random and vary a lot depending on my mood,” Hlibichuk said. “I would describe my work as a mixture of figurative and abstract.”
Laurel Reuter, director for North Dakota Museum of Art, each year asks Zhimin Guan, art and design professor at MSUM, to select a talented student whose work will be shown at this year’s auction.
“I am looking for a cross of work and artists varying in ages,” Reuter said. “Hlibichuk had a beautiful piece and is a talented artist.”
Hlibichuk felt beside herself when she was chosen and didn’t expect such an extraordinary privilege. This is the first auction in which Hlibichuk’s work has ever been presented.
“The director selected a few pieces from the ones shown, and she said, ‘These are the ones that I want to put in the auction,’” Hlibichuk said. “I was the only one from MSUM that was chosen, but a few other students’ work from other colleges were chosen too.”
In the auction, artists set their minimum prices on their work and then the live auction is held for buyers to bet on the artists’ pieces.
“I don’t know if my piece was sold since I had to leave early because my friend was feeling sick,” Hlibichuk said. “But I think it was sold because everyone was making a big deal about my piece when I was at the auction, and I haven’t heard otherwise.”
According to Hlibichuk the auction was busy, and the small room showing the artwork was packed with several artists, art collectors and other art enthusiasts.
In addition, some of Guan’s paintings are sold at the auction almost every year.
“He is a really great professor,” Hlibichuk said. “He really helped me develop my talent … before I didn’t know how to paint as well but he taught me how to really open up my ideas and push me further.”
At the auction, there were 45 individual artists and 56 pieces of artwork represented. Every piece at the auction was sold including Hlibichuk’s painting.
BY SAMANTHA STARK