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Art In Literature: The Mary Lynn Kotz Award

ART IN LITERATURE: The Mary Lynn Kotz Award recognizes an outstanding book that is written primarily in response to a work (or works) of art while also showing the highest literary quality as a creative or scholarly work on its own merit. This unique award is cosponsored by two prestigious Virginia cultural institutions, the Library of Virginia and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.

The award is named for journalist Mary Lynn Kotz, author of the award-winning biography Rauschenberg, A Life. For years, Kotz has spoken publically and passionately to arts and literary organizations and general audiences about the need for clear, exciting writing about art.

The Art in Literature Award was launched in 2012 under the auspices of a distinguished Founding Committee: Katherine Neville, Chair (Board, Smithsonian Libraries); Alex Nyerges (Director, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts); Karl H. Pribram, MD (Distinguished Professor, Georgetown University); Clarice Smith (Board, Smithsonian American Art Museum); Lindley Smith, MD (Board, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts), and Sandra G. Treadway (Librarian of Virginia).

Works eligible for submission for the award must be published for the first time in English in the U.S. in the calendar year before the award is presented. New editions of previously published works are eligible for consideration if the new edition contains a substantial amount of new material. The topic of the book submitted must be the visual arts, including but not limited to painting, carving, sculpture, printmaking, textiles, glass, and the artists or milieu of such works—but excluding such arts as dramatic and performance arts, music, literature, and interactive or computer art. Categories of acceptable work include: fiction, journalism, poetry, history, biography, art history, social history of art, catalogs of qualified museum exhibitions, and young adult books.

The 2016 winner of the Art in Literature Award is Portraits at an Exhibition by Patrick Horrigan. Horrigan will be recognized at a special event at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts on Friday, October 14, 2016 and on Saturday, October 15, 2016, at the Library of Virginia’s annual Virginia Literary Awards Gala.


Friday, October 14, 2016
Art in Literature: An Undying Love Affair
VMFA, Pauley Venter Parlor, 6–7:30 p.m.
This event will feature a presentation by the award recipient, Patrick Horrigan, followed by a book signing and reception in Marble Hall.
Visit www.vmfa.museum to purchase tickets for this event.

Saturday, October 15, 2016
Library of Virginia Literary Luncheon
Greater Richmond Convention Center, 12 noon–2:00 p.m.
The Library of Virginia's annual Literary Luncheon feature medal presentations for all Virginia Literary Award finalists and a keynote presentation by the 2016 Lifetime Achievement recipient, Nikki Giovanni. Virginia Literary Award finalists will be available for book signings after the luncheon.

Library of Virginia Literary Awards Celebration
Library of Virginia, 6–10:30 p.m.
The Library of Virginia Literary Awards are given to outstanding Virginia authors in the areas of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction, as well as a Lifetime Achievement Award.

Visit www.thevirginiashop.org/LiteraryAwardsEvents.aspx to purchase tickets for the Saturday events.

A list of past finalists and winners can be viewed on the Literary Awards website.

Nominations for the 2017 Art in Literature: The Mary Lynn Kotz Award will be accepted through April 28, 2017. Entry forms can be submitted via e–mail to jean.strohm@lva.virginia.gov or via regular mail:

The Library of Virginia
800 East Broad Street
Richmond, Virginia 23219-8000