Dear Friends and Art Lovers,
It has once again been quite awhile since I made a Blog post! Life gets busy and suddenly so much time goes by!
But it is not for lack of wonderful events not happening! Throughout this crazy covid time - I have had an amazingly productive, and exciting year! It's actually kind of hard to believe!
I'm gong to create 2 or 3 Blog postings at this juncture, as I my Art events from this year are really quite monumental! From winning the amazing Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau Wine label competition, to having one of my paintings featured in the lovely 'Better Homes and Gardens' magazine - to working on a couple of very powerful and amazing commissions. Then being asked to do a Radio Interview, and then a T.V. Interview - WOW!
So, Firstly - the information on Winning the Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau ART Competition.
Les Vins Georges Duboeuf is a truly outstanding French Winery and Vineyard. I am utterly thrilled to now be a part of their 'wine family'!
The late Georges Duboeuf seems to be responsible for making the Beaujolais Nouveau Wine as well known and loved as it is today. With very careful hand harvesting, using grapes from the Beaujolais region the 'Beaujolais Nouveau' - the first wine of the harvest - is made each fall in France. This 'first wine' gives hints of the what the same grapes will produce once aged over more time. The Beaujolais Nouveau is meant to be enjoyed in the first year or two of being harvested and bottled.
The Beaujolais Nouveau wines had been being sold in the U.S. for many years, but about four years the Le Vins Georges Duboeuf decided to have a competition among American artists to have their art featured on the label of their Beaujolais Nouveau.
I learned of the 2020 competition in late March - as the first Covid lock downs had begun. Actually, another artists' email alerted me to the competition - 2 days before the deadline to submit my Art!
I submitted my painting, 'Russet Vines', 18" x 24", Oil on canvas - and quickly asked my supporters and friends to 'vote' for my painting. Amazingly, out of over 1,000 entries, my painting became one of 14 finalists! It was incredibly exciting - but I hadn't won - Yet...
Russet Vines, 18" x 24", Oil on canvas
At this point, I had to once again ask my amazing and incredible supporters and friends to 'Vote' for me! After 2 weeks of voting from around the world (!), and then another 3 weeks of waiting to hear the results, I was finally given the fantastic news that I had WON! WooHoo!! This meant my painting was to appear on over 1,000,000 bottles of wine, plus I was to receive prize money. It was (& is) Really Fantastic amid all the uncertainty and negativity of covid. It very much gave me hope and promise for a brighter future!
However, I couldn't alert my supporters until Georges Duboeuf officially made their announcement, so in all my excitement, I had to keep this amazing news quiet - for awhile...! So, finally after the first week of June - I was able to share the wonderful news with my supporters.
Once the Competition became Public, and I was able to share with my supporters and friends this wonderful achievement. And since then, more great events have happened!
"Island Artist Maeve Croghan Wins Wine Label Art Competition
Mendocino artist honored in France
Maeve Croghan’s art will be on 1 million bottles of French wine
MENDOCINO — Local artist Maeve Croghan has won a prestigious — and tasty — award: Her original painting “Russet Vines” will appear on more than 1 million bottles of wine from the Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau winery in France.
In addition to being the contest winner, Croghan will receive $3,500 in prize money.
Originally from Virginia, Croghan is the founder of the Mendocino Eco Artists group, a group that holds regular art showings to bring awareness and generate income through sales for local environmental groups and causes. She is also a long time member of the Mendocino Plein Air Painters group and has worked on the exhibits committee at the Mendocino Art Center.
Taking home first place from more than a thousand entries, Croghan’s artwork “evokes a sense of timeless appreciation and connection to nature and the vines that give birth to the annual harvest,” states the winery’s announcement.
This is the Beaujolais Nouveau Artist Label Contest’s fourth year running, and the first wine of the vintage is always released on the third Thursday in November with a featured, American artist’s work on the label, said an announcement from Les Vins Georges Duboeuf.
Beaujolais Nouveau is a red wine that is made every year, only six to eight weeks after the grapes are harvested. Les Vins Georges Duboeuf is a family-owned-and-operated winery in the heart of the Beaujolais region of France, founded in the early 1960s, with a long history of collaborating with artists to create their iconic labels.
For the last four years, the first wine of the vintage has been released every November with a different artist-designed label. “The annual reveal of the label and design was almost as exciting as the wine itself,” said a release from the winery. “The different label designs reflected the wine inside — Beaujolais Nouveau is a new and different wine each year.”
Using vibrant golds, oranges and reds for 2020’s vintage, “I wanted to relay a feeling of warmth and happiness, bringing attention to the beauty and splendor of the vines,” Croghan said.
Even though the painting will grace the bottles of French wine, Croghan said she based her artwork after the vineyards of Mendocino County. And what’s more, she said, Croghan didn’t even hear about the contest until two days before the deadline.
“In a time where there is so much uncertainty, I cannot express how elated and thankful I am for this opportunity,” says Croghan. “It is an amazing feeling to have my work recognized by such a remarkable brand as Georges Duboeuf.”
The wines with the special label were released Nov. 19, and will only be available in stores until mid-January, Croghan said. “And the wine is delicious — it is a delicious, deep, fruity wine — from Beaujolais, France!”
Croghan also currently has a small showing of her art in the bar area of the MacCallum House Inn, in Mendocino. The show is open Thursday-Monday, 3:30 to 9 p.m.
For more information about Croghan’s artwork, visit her website at www.maevecroghan.com. For more information about the Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau winery, visit their website at nouveaulabelcontest.com.
As soon as 'Nouveau Release Day' happened - I began receiving photos from all over the country of my painting in people's local wine shops and grocery stores! It was quite exciting! Photos were received from Michigan, California, Florida, Indiana, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Virginia, New York, Idaho, Minnesota, Illonois and more - with the brilliant wine box cases and the bottles with my paintings on them! It was - and is - very exciting to be able to share my Art so broadly. I am very happy to have my Art be able to be 'in the world' this way.
Then - even more publicity happened - including a LIVE Radio interview (at 4:30a.m. PST!), and a T.V. interview!
I will include these fantastic events in a separate Blog!
The 2020 Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau box covered with my 'Russet Vines' painting on all sides in a wine shop.
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Original rendition of my Painting, 'Russet Vines' on the 2020 Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau Wine Bottle. In this version, my whole painting was featured. However, their designers used their 'artistic license' to morph the painting a bit.
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There are actually three wines that were released as the 2020 Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau Wines.
The 2020 Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau Wine
What makes most happy is that my Art, my painting 'Russet Vines' will be being shared with the world ~ on over 1,000,000 bottles of wine! I feel having my Art out in the world, is most important. Hopefully somehow the Art will positively affect the purchasers and enjoyers of the wine, and my Art can bring more goodness into the world.