Winefest’s 20th anniversary celebrated with art

Sarah Catlin, executive director of Colorado Mountain Winefest, shows a painting by Front Range artist Patricia Carroll that was the winning work in the 2011 Winefest art contest. Carroll’s painting, “Colorado Nectar,” and other works were displayed Tuesday during a reception at Blue Pig Gallery in Palisade for the 2011 Colorado Mountain Winefest, which will be Sept. 15-18.

Three of the great things in Bennett Price’s life were showcased Tuesday night in downtown Palisade.

Those are art, wine and the festival he helped launch some 20 years ago, albeit on a much smaller scale and with the help of four other wineries: Colorado Mountain Winefest.

Two decades later, Price, 75, is proud of what he sees of the festival.

“This is exactly what I thought it would be back then,” said Price, owner of De Beque Canyon Winery.

“Fruit of the vine, Wine-fest style” was the theme of a reception Tuesday at Blue Pig Gallery, where the walls are holding entries for the 2011 Winefest art contest.

Twenty works were submitted by artists local and statewide, compared to 11 for 2010, said Winefest executive director Sarah Catlin. The works will remain on display through March 11.

Among them is the 2011 winner which will be featured on the festival poster:  “Colorado Nectar” by Front Range artist Patricia Carroll, an oil work with a simple display of wine glasses and bottles.

Catlin said work which was geographically neutral was an important factor in choosing this year’s winner.

“We’ve got 18 wineries in Colorado, and we wanted something that wasn’t specific to this region,” Catlin said.

Approximately 85 percent of the grapes feeding the state’s wine industry are grown in the Grand Valley, she said.


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