Tracey Pennington, 2014 Hadley winner, Katy Delahanty, Julie Leidner, & Susanna Crum, 2013 winner.
Photo-Sarah Davis Photography


By Keith Waits

Entire contents copyright © 2015 by Keith Waits. All rights reserved

The Community Foundation of Louisville and Louisville Visual Art — formerly the Louisville Visual Art Association, have awarded the 2015 M.A. Hadley Prize for Visual Art to Louisville artist Julie Leidner.

The $5000 prize, which has been awarded since 2013, is selected by a select jury of arts professionals from a field of more than 50 submissions. It seeks to encourage professional and creative enrichment for the worthy recipient.

Leidner, a 31-year-old painter, writer, illustrator and collage artist who earned her Master of Fine Arts degree from the Rhode Island School of Design, will use the prize to research a graphic novel project she is developing in collaboration with fellow artist Katy Delahanty.

The subject of the project comes from a highly personal place. After Leidner’s paternal grandmother passed away in 2014, she and Delahanty began pursuing a story idea focusing on the legacy of fourteen women of her generation, beginning with Delahanty’s own paternal grandmother and including other “pioneering feminists” such as Judi Jennings, Suzy Post and Elmer Lucille Allen.

Leidner and Delahanty plan to attend the tenth annual New York Art Book Fair, and the related 7th Annual Contemporary Artists’ Book Conference. While in NYC they will also view museum exhibitions, attend panels, and participate in workshops directly related to the collaborative project and goals.

The first two recipients of the Hadley Prize, Susanna Crum and Tracy Pennington, attended the announcement, made at PUBLIC, LVA’s gallery in downtown Louisville. Although the application process is open, the history of the prize so far is one that recognizes strong creative women, a fitting tribute to the innovative and indomitable ceramicist Mary Alice Hadley, for who the prize is named.


Keith[box_light]Keith Waits is a native of Louisville who works at Louisville Visual Art during the days, including being one of the hosts of PUBLIC on ARTxFM, but spends most of his evenings indulging his taste for theatre, music and visual arts. His work has appeared in Pure Uncut Candy, TheatreLouisville, and Louisville Mojo. He is now Managing Editor for[/box_light]