Salmagundi Art Club of New York


Salmagundi Art Club's 150th Year Anniversary - Prestigious Library Commission Competition
Online, February 01, 2021 - June 01, 2021

Allegorical Figure by Abbott Thayer      

Competition For A Prestigious Salmagundi Club Library Commission - In Celebration of the 150th year Anniversary of the Salmagundi Club

Sponsored and organized by the Salmagundi Library Committee and Alexander Katlan

To do: Create and paint two panels for  the Salmagundi Club Library inside-facing doors with an award of $15,000 ($7500 per painted panel.) These paintings will be permanently attached to the Salmagundi Club Library entry doors.

Open to: All schools of art, ateliers, academies and artists. Limited to 70 artists on a first-come, first-served basis. Only members of the Salmagundi Club can apply for the commission. All artists (including invitational artists) will be required to become members of the Salmagundi Club in order for the award commission to be considered. To expedite Salmagundi Club membership application each applicant should apply as a Patron Member and  note on application “ applying for Salmagundi Club Library Commission Competition.”   Under recommendations, please use my name “Alexander Katlan”

For Salmagundi Club membership please click HERE, choose Patron member, complete the application and send in your fee. Each application will be expedited for the competition. Do not submit art as you are applying as a patron member.

Theme For Door Panels: The two panels should contain  Allegorical figures; for example could be Wisdom and Knowledge or Wisdom and Truth. Figural, architectural, florals, trompe l’oeil and landscape elements are acceptable additions and/or background to the allegorical painting. Additional figures and objects can be included in the two panel paintings. Each panel can contain multiple figures and the main central figure of the primary allegory. The exact size of each panel is 66 ¼” x 23 ½”.

Inner Library Doors, photo by Joe Goldman  


  1. Purchase ticket ($65) for Competition of  Salmagundi Library Commission when listed on Club web site on Eventbrite starting February 1, 2021. The competition is limited to 70 artists.
  2. If not a Salmagundi member, please apply on-line via the club web site for patron membership and indicate on application “applying for Salmagundi Library Commission Competition”. To expedite application, do not submit art with your members application as you are applying as a patron member.
  3. The deadline for on-line submission of the two door painting panel designs (compositional studies) and proposal is by June 1, 2021 on-line only.  No original studies should be sent to the Salmagundi Club. All designs and painting compositions will be done in the artist’s studio and not on-site at the Salmagundi Club.  Artists should submit oil studies and finished compositional sketches as the proposal for the design of the door  panels. Colored oil painting studies of each door size 16” x 6” should be prepared and photographed as part of the submission, as well as a  final detailed compositional drawing study of each door .  Photographs of these oil and graphic studies , designs, written proposal, descriptions and explanation of allegorical symbols should be sent on-line to by the deadline of June 1, 2021. If the submission is a collaboration with another artist please indicate this, with the collaborating artist’s name, in your submission. Only the ticket purchaser needs to be a member of the Salmagundi Club. The two door painting studies will be judged by five outside jurors by on-line photographs of the art designs and descriptions. At the discretion of the Judges, the five jurors may request to see the actual physical finished composition studies and oil studies of the door panels by the five finalists after June 1. Arrangements will be made for delivery of these finalists’ work. Only serious submissions of the highest professional level will be considered.
  4. The commission award announcement will be made on Monday  June 28, 2021 by panel of judges who will have considered both the artists’ vision and their ability. The two  door panels made of ACM/Di Bond will be sent to the winner for completion.
  5. On November 1, the winning  artist will deliver the two door panels to Salmagundi Club for installation on the Library doors. Unveiling of the doors will take place at the Club’s annual Library Dinner in November.

Payment: On Monday June 28st, upon the announcement of the winner of the commission a deposit payment of one-third will be sent to the artist/ or artists. The final payment will be paid upon the delivery of the completed two paintings on panel to the Salmagundi Club by November 1, 2021 for installation in the library.


Library Doors  

Statement of the Library: Since its inception in 1891, the Salmagundi Library has been a signature part of the Salmagundi Club experience. For early artist members in the 19th-century, the Library provided important visual references to produce illustrations for pre-photography magazines and newspapers. During the 20th-century, the Salmagundi Library offered educational lectures, dinners, auctions and other events that brought together Club members and the local community in an intimate space. In the 21st-century, the Library continues to build on the 20th-century events and provides a serene oasis from the hustle and bustle of the world. The Library opens a window into the lives of the earliest artist members and attracts new membership to our Club.


Inner Library Doors size 82 ¾” H x 34 ¾”W each door, inner panel 66 ¼”H x 23 ½”W each door 


History of the Library: The Club’s membership created a unique cataloguing and classification system for the organization. It is one of America’s only surviving pre-Dewey Decimal system libraries created by artist and illustrators. This unusual system separates general topics within lettered bookcases, specifies the book shelf number, followed by the point at which the book is located on that shelf (for example, 1st position, 2nd position on the shelf, 3rd position on the shelf, and so on, resulting in spine labels of Z1-10 for example.) The system, created before wide distribution of the newly formed Dewey Decimal system, highlights the artist’s concerns, provides a snapshot into the membership’s minds and is a reflection of the era. The collection contains approximately 5,800 volumes. Most volumes are pre-1923 editions and are out of copyright. The bulk of the books from the 1880s-1910s are printed on acidic paper requiring extensive conservation today. About 2% of the collection contains rare or valuable books. The collection contains J. SANDFORD SALTUS LOUIS VII COLLECTION & COSTUME BOOK COLLECTION, LIBRARY MUG FUND COLLECTION, CLUB MEMBER PHOTOGRAPH COLLECTION, HENRY “HENNO” MICHAEL O’CONNOR, 1891-1975 PAPERS, WILLIAM JOHN WHITTEMORE, 1860-1955 PAPERS, DISPLAY OF THE ARTIST’S PALETTE COLLECTION, ARTIST SCRAPBOOKS, ARTIST LETTERS, AMERICAN ILLUSTRATION COMPILED BY ANTONIO CIRINO, ILLUSTRATION POSTER DOCUMENTATION, etc.




Historical Reference: In the first Salmagundi Clubhouse  at 14 West 12th Street there were commissioned  Painting Datums on wood panels for the entrance hallway of the clubhouse. Many of these panels are still in the collection of the club and can be seen outside of  the Library in the hallway on the second floor of  the Club.

Award: $15,000 in cash prize for the two door panels to be announced on June 28, 2021. The winning commission is subject to Salmagundi Club Board of Directors approval. If the winner’s compositional study is not accepted by the Salmagundi Board a fee of $1000 will be paid to the winning artist . The deposit of one third  will not need to be returned as it reflects time and materials already consumed. The top four artists  runners-up will each receive a  $500 award  and will provide the final compositional drawing and oil studies to be exhibited at the Salmagundi Library. The four runner’s up will retain ownership of the studies.

The two door paintings by the winning artist/artists of the commission  will be delivered to the Club by November 1, 2021 for installation. The unveiling of the painted panels will be held at the Salmagundi Club Library Dinner in November.

Materials: The two metal panels, either Di Bond or ACM panels will be provided by the Salmagundi Library for the winner of the commission.
Shipping of the paintings will be paid for by the Library. The preparation of the two panels is at the artist’s discretion.

The exact size of each door panel is 66 ¼” x 23 ½”. No panels larger or smaller will be accepted as they must fit within the inner door panel.
No panels with canvas layer, wood, paper, Masonite, fiber board or on stretchers will be accepted due to fire regulations. The paintings may be executed in oil, acrylic or mixed media.

Fees: Artist participant fees are $65 per application. No refunds or extensions will be given if unable to complete painting design by deadline of June 1, 2021.  Submissions of painting compositional studies and designs may be submitted earlier than the deadline.

Please click HERE to register for the Competition Library Commission.  Two artists may apply on one application---for example: One artist creates an architectural background another paints the central figure, or one artist paints the background landscape and another the figures.

Click HERE for participant tickets, available online only.

Limited to 70 artist applicants on a first-come first-served basis.

For Wait List: Please contact Alexander Katlan 718 445-7458 or

The Salmagundi Library reserves the right to reject any commission chosen by the panel of Judges if the paintings designs are not considered of the highest standards.

Art Jury

Five Distinguished Members of the New York Metropolitan and New England Art Scene:

Artist Jordan Sokol

Born in Queens, NY, Jordan Sokol studied and taught drawing and painting in Italy and Spain for 11 years before returning to the United States in 2014. In 2015 he participated in establishing the U.S. branch of The Florence Academy of Art in Jersey City, NJ, serving as its Academic Director for five years. In 2020 Sokol taught as an adjunct professor at the New York Academy of Art until moving to Old Lyme, CT in 2021 to serve as the Artistic Director of the Lyme Academy of Fine Arts. 
Sokol’s work has exhibited in galleries and museums throughout Europe and the United States, including London’s National Portrait Gallery in 2015 as part of the BP Portrait Exhibition. His work has been featured in numerous publications including several books by Juliette Aristides, American Artist Magazine, American Art Collector, Artists on Art, Fine Art Connoisseur, and the Epoch Times.


Artist Amaya Gurpide was born in Spain. She began formally studying art at the age of 16 in the School of Arts of Pamplona. In 1999, she moved to New York City to broaden her studies in figure painting and drawing at the Art Students League, the National Academy of Design and the Grand Central Academy, all of which awarded her various scholarships. After a decade in New York, Amaya returned to Spain in 2009 to concentrate on her painting and offer figure drawing, anatomy and painting classes from her private studio in Madrid. In 2014 Amaya was invited to move back to the U.S. to take part in the creation of the U.S. branch of The Florence Academy of Art in Jersey City, where she currently has a studio and is a Principal Instructor. Amaya is now co-director of the Lyme Art Academy. Amaya has also taught as an adjunct Professor at The New York Academy of Art. Amaya’s work has exhibited internationally, and her drawings and paintings are in private collections throughout Europe and the U.S.



Artist Robert Telenick is a painter living in New York.  He is originally from Arizona and has studied art at the University of Arizona, Arizona State University and the Art Students League of New York. He also holds a MPA in Nonprofit Management. He is a long time ASL employee and is currently the Director of Programs.









Artist Steven Assael was born in New York, New York in 1957.  He attended Pratt Institute and presently teaches at The School of Visual Arts in New York.  Assael balances naturalism with a romanticism that permeates the figures and surroundings of his paintings and drawings.  The focus of his work is the human figure, either individually or in a group, rendered in glowing relief by gentle beams of warm and cool light.  Steven Assael’s classical talents are as rare as they are essential to the diverse art world of the 21st Century. Steven Assael’s work was the subject of a one-person exhibition at the Naples (FL) Museum of Art from October, 2010 to January, 2011.  Assael’s paintings were also included in the exhibition “New Old Masters”, curated by Donald Kuspit, at the National Museum in Gdansk, Poland in 2006. A retrospective exhibition was held at the Frye Art Museum, Seattle (WA) in 1999.  Single-person exhibitions of works by Steven Assael have also been featured at the Cress Gallery of Art at the University of Tennessee, Lowe Gallery (Atlanta, GA) and Ann Nathan Gallery (Chicago, IL).  His work has been exhibited at The Arkansas Arts Center, The New York Academy of Art and The Arnot Art Museum (Elmira, NY), and is in the permanent collections of The Hunter Museum of Art (Chattanooga, TN), The Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art & Design (Kansas City, MO), The Columbus Museum of Art (OH) and the Metropolitan Museum of Art (NY). Steven Assael is currently represented by Forum Gallery, New York, NY.




Artist Jacob Collins is a leading figure in the contemporary revival of classical painting. Collins's style of painting is considered Classical Realism, and his subject matter focuses on the figure, portraiture, still life and landscape as well as the occasional interior. Collins is the founder of the Water Street Atelier, The Grand Central Academy of Art, and the Hudson River Fellowship. Jacob Collins is a resident artist member of the Salmagundi Club.  Collins' drawings and paintings have been shown with museums and galleries in North America and Europe, and he has been commissioned to paint portraits of J. Paul Getty Jr., President George H. W. Bush and U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren E. Burger and Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.







Cash award for Library Commission is made possible through the generous donation of a  private Salmagundi Club member.

Special thanks to the following for their assistance: Alexander Katlan, Elizabeth Spencer, Roger Rossi, Carole Teller, Jacob Collins, Justine Kalb, Jason Ward, Joan Marie Palmer, Dylan Gillespie, Donna Prizzi, Tahseen Ali  Kahn, Landon Clay, Dan Bunn, Brian West, Patrick Okrasinski, Claudia Seymour, Liz Beard, Regina McGrade, Joan Forbes, Brenda Tribush, Richard Rosenblatt , Anthony Almeida,  and Bill Indursky.


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