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The Basil H Alkazzi Award for Excellence

NYFA announces the winners of $40,000 Basil H. Alkazzi Award for Excellence

The New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) is proud to announce this year’s two winners of The Basil H. Alkazzi Award for Excellence, in painting, which grants $20,000 each to artists Daniele Genadry and Richard Saba. Nine semi-finalists were also selected and named as Marissa Bluestone, Stephanie Brody-Lederman, Janet Culbertson, Erik den Breejen, Hilda Demsky, Kimia Ferdowsi Kline, Mollie Hosmer-Dillard, Federico Infante, Krassimir Mihaylov.

The Basil H. Alkazzi Award for Excellence was established in 2010 from British artist Basil Alkazzi’s desire to recognize and encourage the work of all painters. Currently in the third year of the program, the award was co-judged by Basil Alkazzi and artist Michael Rich. The award is open to painters of all nationalities, provided they are residents of New York State. All those who applied to NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellowship Program in Painting, that is granted every three years due to triennial rotations of 15 disciplines, had the option to be considered for this award. 

Mr. Alkazzi’s generosity and aspiration to support artists and give back to the artist community have been incredibly inspiring and NYFA is very grateful to Mr. Alkazzi for the opportunity to contribute to his endeavor by administering this award. The impact it has and will continue to have on the individual artist’s practice is immeasurable,” said NYFA Executive Director Michael L. Royce. 

Co-judge and artist Michael Rich is himself the 1996 recipient of the Basil H. Alkazzi Award (USA), with his work featured in private and public collections nationally, including, the Museum of Southern Art, New Orleans, LA and the Springfield Museum of Art, Springfield, OH. 

One of this year’s winners Daniele Genadry emphasizes that “the fullness of Mr. Alkazzi’s generosity that is evident not only from the incredible award itself, but also in the way he describes specific pieces that moved him, and his appreciation of other artists and their work. It seems an understatement to say how inspired and full of gratitude I am for this kind of support from a fellow artist”. 

Artist Richard Saba expressed how the award has “given me an instant lightness of being as it affords me the opportunity to work unencumbered by the weight of financial burdens. However, the reaffirmation that comes when your work finds an empathetic recipient gives more than words can say”.


About Basil Alkazzi:

The British artist Basil Alkazzi is a prolific and, in his own words, a “compulsive” painter. His distinguished career as an artist spans almost 50 years. Six monographs of work have been published, which includes The Rites of Spring by Donald Kuspit, Resonant Echoes – The Art of Basil Alkazzi by Dennis Wepman, and An Odyssey of Dreams – A Decade of Paintings 2003-2012 by Donald Kuspit. His work is held in the public collections of many museums including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Hirshhorn Museum – Smithsonian Institute in Washington, the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, Missouri, Santa Barbara Museum of Art, California, The Tel-Aviv Museum of Art in Israel, The National Council in Kuwait, The National Museum in Gdansk, The Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase, NY and The Grey Art Gallery, NY. In addition to being a gifted painter, Basil Alkazzi is also a generous philanthropist supporting other artists. In 1986, he established The Basil H. Alkazzi Foundation Awards, at the Royal College of Art in London, where he was made Senior Fellow recently. A cosmopolitan, he has traveled widely for long periods of time, and has lived and exhibited in London and New York. He currently resides in Monaco in the south of France.

For more information on Basil Alkazzi visit his website at www.basilalkazzi.com.

About Michael Rich:

The American artist completed his graduate work in Painting at the Savannah College of Art and Design, where he also taught for a number of years. Returning to Rhode Island in 2000, Michael Rich now lives and works in Providence, RI and Nantucket, MA and is a Professor of Art at Roger Williams University in Bristol, Rhode Island. A dedicated practitioner of yoga, Rich is influenced greatly by Eastern philosophy and art in an approach to nature and landscape as a wellspring for spiritual investigation and meditation.

Recent featured museum exhibitions include the Bristol Art Museum, Bristol, RI (2014), the Newport Art Museum, Newport, RI (2008) and the Walton Arts Center, Fayetteville Arkansas (2007). Rich is the 1996 recipient of the Basil H. Alkazzi Award (USA) was included in Sotheby’s auction series, International Young Art 2000. His work is featured in private and public collections nationally including, the Museum of Southern Art, New Orleans, LA and the Springfield Museum of Art, Springfield, OH.  


Previous Recipients of The Basil H. Alkazzi Award for Excellence, in painting:

Daniele Genadry (2015) 
Richard Saba (2015)
Gabriele Evertz (2012)
Holly Sears (2012)
Bruce Pearson (2010)
Mary Temple (2010)