The New Art Dealers Alliance (NADA) and Artadia announced today that Summer Wheat is the recipient of the 2016 NADA Artadia Award, a $5,000 unrestricted, merit-based Award granted to one artist exhibiting at the fair.

Wheat’s work is exhibited at Fridman Gallery at NADA New York. A jury comprised of two curators, Ian Alteveer, Associate Curator, Department of Modern and Contemporary Art at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and Amanda Hunt, Assistant Curator at the Studio Museum in Harlem, selected Summer Wheat.

“We were intrigued by Summer Wheat’s process and use of material, pushing the boundaries of acrylic paint to create works that are compelling and visceral, and are thrilled that the Award goes directly to the artist in Artadia’s great tradition,” according to joint statement by Alteever and Hunt in the award announcement.


"Monkeys in Trees" by Summer Wheat, 2016. Acrylic on aluminum mesh, 72 × 96 inches.

"Monkeys in Trees" by Summer Wheat, 2016. Acrylic on aluminum mesh, 72 × 96 inches.


Summer Wheat was born in 1977 in Oklahoma City, OK. She currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. Her recent exhibitions include: Institute of Contemporary Art Boston (Boston, MA); deCordova Museum and Sculpture Park (Lincoln, MA); The Torrance Art Museum (Torrance, CA); Cress Gallery of Art (Chattanooga, TN), and Samson (Boston, MA).

"Wheat's paintings and sculptural forms are typified by multi-layered dimensional surfaces of expressive structure and color that challenge the limits of material and process," according to Fridman Gallery's website. "Interested in the dichotomy of “high” and “low” culture, the intersection of fine art and craft, and our society’s notions of “beauty”, Wheat centers her subject matter upon the figure and narrative, both imagined and recollected, to explore vulnerability and contradiction in life and story with tender humor and generous curiosity."

Summer Wheat's work is currently the subject of a solo show at Oklahoma Contemporary museum in Oklahoma City. "Pry the Lid Off" is on view from February 25 to  August 8, 2016. The exhibition features site-specific works Wheat made recently while an artist in residency there, according to the museum. The work springs from inspiration found in Johannes Vermeer’s The Milkmaid. 

The NADA Artadia Award acknowledges innovative voices working in contemporary art today. The unique collaboration highlights the ways in which nonprofit organizations and art fairs can come together to celebrate artistic excellence. This is the seventh time NADA and Artadia have partnered to present the Award.

Artadia is a national nonprofit organization that supports visual artists with unrestricted, curator-driven Awards and a lifetime of professional opportunities. Since 1999, Artadia has provided over $3 million to more than 300 artists in participating cities of Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco.

The New Art Dealers Alliance (NADA) is the definitive non-profit arts organization dedicated to the cultivation, support, and advancement of new voices in contemporary art.

NADA New York is presented at Basketball City, 299 South Street on the Lower East Side of New York City. The fair takes place from May 5 - 8, 2016.


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