The 57th Street Art Fair judging committee is pleased to announce the recipients of their coveted “Newcomer Award,”
including jewelers, Aaron Sault and Debra Dembowski and woodworker, Marc Lamm. The three newcomer award-winning
artists for the 2016 Fair will receive complimentary booth space and will also have prominently displayed booths.
The process is certainly not taken lightly. Six members of the jury and nine members of the Art Fair committee reviewed
the work of 25 artists. They poured through images, artist statements and descriptions, in addition to having lengthy
discussions and implementing a several step voting process.
Jeweler Aaron Sault first fell in love with the twisted creations of Juniper trees while living in Durango, CO., and it was this
new affinity that sparked his desire to carve, to work with his hands, though he had no experience. Sault’s curiosity led him
to Northern Michigan University’s furniture design program, but it wasn’t until a blacksmithing course that everything
clicked for the artist. It was then that Aaron changed his major to Metal Smithing. Unfortunately, a diagnosis of nerve
damage and carpal tunnel sentenced Sault to alter his senior show from a series of sculpture furniture forged from steel
to a body of precision jewelry pieces, primarily using his left hand. He has created jewelry ever since.
The focus of Debra Dembowski’s jewelry is predominately figurative. She hand fabricates her stylized people using small
chasing and repousse tools to create arms, legs and other dimensional details. She fashions her faces from polymer clay
using a hybrid molding / sculpting technique, then further defines the details with washes of acrylic paints and chalks to
achieve the doll like appearance that she desires. After polishing the metal and setting any necessary stones she then
constructs the beaded hair by sewing each and every strand. When completed she attaches it to the metal using a
technique that she developed and has become her signature look.
Marc Lamm started building furniture and experimenting with simple but uncommon shapes in 1973. In 1996, Lamm
developed a new technique in woodworking he named curved joinery- solid wood joined along curves with solid wood
strips inserted between all sections. In 2012, he began making wood wall sculptures. His work is in hospitals - including the
Mayo Clinic - colleges, corporate offices and more than 180 homes all over the country.