SFA Art Student Silcox Awarded Frields Scholarship
The Friends of the Visual Arts at Stephen F. Austin State University have selected Allison Silcox, a senior student in sculpture from Winnie, as this year’s recipient of the Gary Q. Frields Art Scholarship. To be eligible for the Frields award, students must “demonstrate an exemplary work ethic, show versatility in the use of media and techniques in two or more areas, and show innovation and quality in their work,” according to the criteria established by Frields.
Jeff Brewer, a former assistant professor at SFA, nominated Silcox for the award that honors the late SFA art professor. In his recommendation letter, Brewer wrote: “As Art Alliance faculty advisor and sculpture professor, I have had the pleasure of knowing, teaching, working with and mentoring Allison for the past two years. She is a talented student and budding young artist.
“Often, students at the undergraduate level lack the focus or understanding to move forward successfully with a body of work or a consistent work ethic,” he added. “Allison is a wonderful exception to this. She is in the studio, rain or shine, always pushing her creativity as well as her skill sets. From my first memory of her learning to weld to her recent creative successes, I am always impressed with her diligence and drive. Having known Gary Frields and understanding what motivated the requirements for his scholarship, I believe Allison fits the bill.”
Brewer added that Silcox shows versatility in the use of media and techniques with a love of sculpture, metals and printmaking. “Allison puts in the long hours and spurs others into pushing their time in the studio,” he wrote. “Allison is active in entering art competitions at SFA and outside of Nacogdoches, always pushing herself. Gary Frields had a passion for the freedom of expression and laser focus on the creative process, and I believe Allison gets this.”
The FVA established scholarships in the name of retiring SFA art professors who were employed in the School of Art for minimum of 10 years before retirement and who contributed in a significant way to the mission of the Friends of the Visual Arts board and its fundraising activities.
Known among his peers as a great advocate for SFA’s art students, Frields taught courses in design, drawing and sculpture and served as graduate program coordinator for the School of Art before his retirement in 2012. He was a recipient of the SFA Fine Arts Teaching Excellence Award and was appointed to the board of directors for the Texas Association of Schools of Art. Frields’ involvement in national juried exhibitions helped in establishing the SFA Texas National, originating the concept, name and designing the logo. The event brings to Nacogdoches some of the most celebrated contemporary artists as jurors. He originated the Art Prom and was a founding member of The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House, creating the logo and contributing to concept planning.
The SFA Friends of the Visual Arts is made up of community members who support the arts in East Texas and provide monetary assistance to students enrolling in the School of Art by conducting fundraisers, such as the annual 12 x 12 event each July.