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Barbadian artist wins several awards in Kentucky State Fair

Sugar cane fabric with its award winning creator Judy Layne-Banks.

Sugar cane fabric with its award winning creator Judy Layne-Banks.

When one is blessed with creativity and chooses to explore it, beautiful and rewarding things can happen.

Such is the case of Barbados-born artist Judy Layne-Banks, who now lives and teaches art in the United States. Known on the clothing and textiles scene in Barbados once upon a time where she taught at the former Erdiston Primary, now the George Lamming Primary School, Layne-Banks is celebrating this week after winning several awards in Louisville, Kentucky.

Layne-Bank, who along with several of her students entered ceramics and batik into the Kentucky State Fair, walked away with awards and accolades.

Taking a bit of her local culture to Kentucky, Layne-Banks entered a batik on silk fabric piece titled Bountiful Harvest, based on the sugar cane harvest and utilising colours reminiscent of the crop leading up to our biggest festival, Crop-Over.

The piece, which was originally white but dyed into many colours, cut into pieces and sewn into tubes as long as ten feet and stuffed with batting to resemble stalks of sugar cane, won The Alma Wallace Lesch Memorial Award.

The artist said the work took a long time to complete and was awarded for her use of innovation in colour or technique. She is known for batik and tie-dye designs.

The teacher of art and humanities relocated to Louisville in 2005. In 2008, she also won first prize for a ten-foot batik design which was highlighted in the local newspaper, the Courier Journal, and in 2009, another batik design won honorable mention.

In this year’s fair, Layne-Banks also entered a second silk piece in yellow, orange, red and blue called Ripples, which won second prize.

Students art work was submitted as well and ten awards were received for their ceramic pieces. The works were displayed until last Sunday.

Of her success, Layne-Banks could only say: “To God be the glory!” (LB)

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