GREATER FLINT ARTS COUNCIL Annual Member Show – Feb. 2009 – Juror:  James Tottis, Curator for the Department of American Art at the Detroit Institute of Arts.

“Judy Enright’s “Cranes and Peaches of Immortality” recalls the northern European Renaissance triptychs and diptychs illuminating correct moral paths.” (HONORABLE MENTION - See Series 22 – ISLANDS)

THE ANN ARBOR NEWS – Sunday, Feb. 8, 2009 – John Carlos Cantu’

“….Enright engages viewers with images of fantasy”……At the far end of the idealized spectrum resides Judy Enright.  One of Ann Arbor’s most fantastical artists, in every sense of the word, Enright  chooses to paint oil landscapes of expansive settings that have never existed.  Her five oversized oils on display at Sweetwater mingle anachronistic imagery with phantasmagoric idylls that are decidedly otherworldly.

In her “Bestowing Ribbons,” a calm afternoon features a midground grove in which wisps of ribbon  are floating around tree trunks. This placid state of affairs is abetted by a pack of dancing foxes busily bedecking the trees. (See Series 20 INTO THE WOODS)

Even more peculiar is Enright’s masterwork, “Atlantis,” in which the city above and below a hazy waterline reveals layers of architectonic legend.  What’s up with the sunken grand piano sitting abandoned at the town’s outpost?  Well, it’s a different view from the mind’s eye indeed.  (See Series 18, THE SEA)

ANNUAL  STATE OF THE ARTS EXHIBITION  - Saginaw Township, MI - June-July, 2008

Peggie Mead Koroncey -Juror’s Statement

I enjoyed the jury process at the Saginaw Art in Public Places Art Exhibit….There is an excellent group of paintings using figurative realism….It thrills me to see such talent in our state. I applaud all our artists.   (BEST OF SHOW AWARD – ‘POWER TO SUPERPOWER’ – see Series 21)

SAGINAW TOWNSHIP STATE OF THE ARTS PROGRAM – ANNUAL EXHIBITION – Oct. – Nov. 2007 –Juror: Gregory Wittkopp, Director of the Cranbrook Art Museum

“…Based on the evidence of the work that was submitted for this exhibition, the region’s cultural community continues to grow and attract some of Michigan’s best artists…. Quite frankly, I found all of the work to be of a consistently high quality, both in terms of technique and content… In the end, I always look for works that have a “spark,” that quality in a work of art that both visually seduces me and then keeps me emotionally engaged as I keep looking at it several times. If a work of art does not continue to reveal itself over time, it probably is not the artist’s best work.

Finally, I would like to offer my personal congratulations to all of the artists in the exhibition,….and thank you for having the courage to share your dreams and visions with the many audiences that will see this exhibition….”

(See Series #23, Part I,  FORE! and CHECKERS)


“….Displayed in the Skylight Gallery (Downriver Council for the Arts ) will be oil paintings by Brighton artist Judy Enright. Enright creates work that symbolically explores the concept of paradox, transcending the barriers of language and religion.”

45TH ANNUAL GREATER MICHIGAN ART EXHIBITION, MIDLAND CENTER FOR THE ARTS, OCT.- DEC. 2005 – Juror Leslie Exton, Professor at the Corcoran College of Art and Design. 

“ …I found the work entered in the 2005 Greater Michigan Art Exhibit to be of the highest caliber. The technique, craft, ideas, approaches to imagery and personal vision demonstrated a standard of excellence not often seen in  group art shows. The edginess and stretches of imagination were both provocative and stimulating; I came back again and again to many of the pictures in this show—which of course is the proof of good artwork….Congratulations to all the artists….”

(See Series # 19 – TELEGRAPH ROAD)

Ann Arbor News -The Livingston Community News –Friday, July 25, 2003
By Lisa Carolin

Brighton Township painter passes on a passion for art.

Judy Enright finds time to teach amid her creative endeavors.
“Between 9 p. m. and 1 a. m. there is always a light on at the home of Judy Enright.

Though her husband is fast asleep, those are the hours when the self-proclaimed night owl gets her inspiration and paints.  While Enright is an artist with many talents –she sculpts wood and alabaster and creates wood block prints—she mostly paints.

The couple’s spacious basement is filled with what Enright calls her inventory—23 years of paintings—dozens and dozens of sizable canvasses and frames she builds herself. She also uses the basement as a classroom for both the adult and children’s classes that she teaches through Brighton and Pinckney Community Education. She says that she has too many supplies to carry if she taught elsewhere. The classes are called Still Life Painting for adults and Art Workshop for children.

…Upstairs in the Enright home, the space designated to be a storage room …is her wood block room. She uses blocks of wood that she carves to make prints. Enright went to Kyoto, Japan, in 1990 to learn the finer points of wood-block printing.

On her back patio, which overlooks Evelyn Lake, Enright has sculpted large pieces of wood into primitive faces she uses as bird feeders. She also has alabaster sculptures that took her years to create.

Enright grew up in Canton, Ohio and knew in elementary school that she enjoyed art. Teachers often recognized her paintings. She liked to create portraits in junior high school, but by high school there was no time for art.

She focused on business classes and went on to major in business and economics at St. Mary’s College in South Bend, Ind. She met her husband at nearby Notre Dame. They got married, had three children and moved to Oak Park, Detroit, Bay City and Brighton Township 20 years ago, (and then Genoa Township in 2000.)

Tom had a graphic design business, and Judy was busy raising children. During that time, she took art classes at various schools. She also taught shorthand, (advanced) typing and Journalism at a high school in Bay City. Enright considered working on a master’s degree in business, but in 1980, while living in Brighton Township, decided to go back to college to study art. She went to the University of Michigan part time and earned a bachelor’s degree of fine arts in painting. Over the years, art has become a full-time job.

Enright describes the majority of her work as icon art, new mythology, modern folklore, contemporary art and some surrealism. She uses a lot of symbolism and predominantly does oil paintings. She has one many series focusing on single subjects, including “The Procession”, a celebration of important events; “East Meets West,” Eastern ideals versus Western materialism; “Sea to Shining Sea,” getting in touch with one’s spiritual side; and “The American Scene,” old wisdom that has been lost and new wisdom tat is needed. There are five to 18 paintings in each series.

She enjoys listening to music while she paints and uses music as an inspiration for her paintings.

“All of my series have a musical theme,” says Enright. “I’ve used Russian classical music, modern music from composers like Philip glass Vangelis, Patrick O’Hearn and Dire Straits, for example. I like all music, especially abstract music, which helps me put my own thought in my paintings.”

Enright is a disciplined artist. “I work all the time, more than eight hours a day,” she says. “I also paint almost every night for up to four hours. I find that kind of discipline can get me over any painter’s block.”

She says one of the hardest parts of being an artist is the isolation that it requires in order to be able to create. Enright describes herself as an extrovert. She’s currently creating a Web site and that is her main goal right now. She has successfully sold a variety of her paintings, the most recent two to the Bank of Ann Arbor….”

Livingston County DAILY PRESS & ARGUS  - TUESDAY, OCTOBER 10, 2000

“An exhibit of oil paintings by Judy Enright of Brighton…... will be on display Oct. 17 through Nov. 12 at the Shiawassee Arts Center, 206 Curwood Castle Drive, Owosso.

Judy Enright’s  colored large-scale oil paintings are  filled with symbolic images. Of her work, Enright states, ‘My  goal is to help viewers see in my paintings the icons of their background, to celebrate their ancient/mythical history and develop the myths that are in process today.’”

THE BRIGHTON ARGUS AND LIVINGSTON COUNTY PRESS – Sunday, November 7, 1999- Maureen Patzer

“At one point in her life, artist Judy Enright lived in a city  in Michigan where she says the residents favored bowling and snowmobiling over most other cultural activities. 

“Living in Brighton is like heaven to me: Enright says “There’s a lot more offered.”

Enright herself is one of the many talented artists in Livingston County making a difference in the way residents view art: Currently, one of Enright’s works is on loan to the Brighton District Library and the congregation at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Brighton is familiar with her work through the detailed decorating projects she brings to the church.

“My spiritual background does have an influence on my work.” Enright said “Though there aren’t overt religious images, it’s very spiritual in a different kind of way.”

Enright’s work—she prefers painting in oil over any other medium—also incorporates a musical selection.

“I combine a lot of disciplines,” Enright said.

The same holds true for Enright’s personal life: Along with a bachelor of arts in economics and business, she holds a bachelor of fine arts in painting, is a spiritual director at her church, and teaches yoga twice a wee.

Ironically, though Enright sensed her artist soul as early as grade school. It wasn’t until the oldest of her three sons was a senior in high school that she began to paint as a professional.

Currently, Enright’s studio is in the basement of her home.

“I’ve taken it over,” Enright said. “My husband refers to the house as the “national Endowment for the Enright Arts.”

Though she works on her projects 12 to 14 hours a day in some aspect—Enright makes her own frames as well as stretching her own canvas—she generally waits until 9 p.m. to take a brush in hand. The, for the next three or four hours, something sort of amazing happens.

“I’ve heard other artists say it before, but sometimes it’s almost like I’m not the one painting, that another force is taking over,” Enright said. “Sometimes, what comes out isn’t really what I had in mind”

By next fall, Enright hopes to be teaching art through the Brighton Adult Community Education program; since she and her husband Tom are planning to move to a new home, Enright hopes her students can join her in that setting.

My husband jokes that we’re building a studio with a home attached,” Enright said.


“BRUSH STROKES: Judy Enright’s “Rooms with a View” exhibit at the Ann Arbor District Library features this local artist’s 11 most recent searches for world peace.  This time out, Enright has set her sights on transcendental wisdom from cultures around the world.  Her Native American ‘Calumet’ leads the way to ‘The Jungle’s” verdant landscape. ‘The Old Guard’s” conquistador defends against the Y2K bug. And “Heavenly Sophia’s” timeless female wisdom shines forth brightly.” 

(See Series # 13)

PAINT CREEK CENTER FOR THE ARTS – Juried All Media Exhibition – March-April, 1998

 Jene Highstein - Juror’s Statement – “As the juror of the Paint Creek Center’s All Media Exhibition, I reviewed all the entries … There were over three times more artists submitting work than available space. I tried to choose an exhibition that represented the best work without regard to its look or style. I chose some works that did not appeal to my particular taste but that obviously had merit…. Looking at the submissions, I felt the range of work submitted was so diverse that it was most important to select those artists whose statements were the clearest and most focused even if they seemed to contradict another artist’s point of view.” (“ See Series #16  ‘GOING HOME’)

THE ANN ARBOR NEWS – Saturday, January 3, 1998

“This year’s annual salon at Clare Spitler Works of Art is titled “More or Less”

The theme is a bit of a misnomer, because there’s nothing less than the best of regional art to be found at the gallery …..

Among the painters, Judy Enright’s “Early Morning Papers” is a marvelous example of surreal expression blended with representation. This affecting oil painting illustrates a silhouetted procession of children being wheeled down a darkened city street  …..” (See Series 16)

THE DETROIT NEWS – FRIDAY, APRIL 11, 1997 – Joy Hakanson Colby

…..” best fine arts show in years.

Juried by new York painter John Walker, this version of Fine Arts Competition looks better than it has in years. Look for…. Judy Enright’s fantasy scapes….”

Birmingham-Bloomfield Art Association -Michigan Fine Arts Competition , April – May 1996 – Juror, Jane Hammond

Juror Statement:  “….The desire and the need to make art and the discipline and tenacity to follow up that need exist within individuals, not institutions. Art is, above all else, a focus on and by extension, a celebration of our individualism our particularity….

I hope that all of you in this show will keep up your own fine work, but also that you will speak up for art in our culture.”


Livingston County Home Town Newspapers - July 5, 1995

For the Love of Art.  By Matthew Bach, Staff Writer

“…. A lot of people want art to decorate their walls,” Enright said. “That’s fine, but it’s not lasting. It has no value down the road. My work has more depth, more feeling and my soul is out there……”

MICHIGAN ANNUAL XXIII, The Art Center, Mount Clemens, MI 48043, Feb. – March, 1995 – Juror: Dennis Nawrocki, Center for Creative Studies.

“What is it that distinguishes one work of art from another, one artist from another…that out of a very large pool of talent…. causes some works to stand out from others? 

I think it has something to do with whether an individual work has an aesthetic edge, a surprise or snap to it, whether it is uncommonly well-crafted or rendered, l whether it displays a fresh direction, a personal or even eccentric point of view, and ultimately whether it is compelling on some level.

The result here, as I see it, is an eclectic gathering of a diverse array of works of art, as well as one in which the works selected participate in many, if not all of the above qualities.”

(See Series # 15, THE CALL)

THE ANN ARBOR NEWS – Sunday, July 17, 1994 – John Carlos Cantu

“We’ve all heard of the proverbial horse of a different color…but what about birds of a different feather?

Its been one short year since the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service accused Brighton artist Judy Enright of breaking a 1918 federal regulation that prohibited the use of feathers from protected migratory birds for decorative purposes.

If you’re new to the story it’s a good one and it attracted national attention last year.

During the 199 Ann Arbor art fairs, one Enright mixed-media work, “The Phoenix,” was on display in the first-floor window of the Washtenaw Council For the Arts loft.

When officials of the Wildlife Service found blue jay feathers were among the media Enright was mixing in “The Phoenix,” they confiscated the art  work—despite Enright’s protests that the feathers had been given to her by friends or simply found by her on the ground. The painting since has been returned and has been donated to a Grand Rapids hospital and no charges were filed against Enright. (*see  footnote)

The confiscation, mocked as bureaucratic overkill by no less a critic than than Chicago Sun-Times humor columnist Mike Royko, spurred Enright to create for her current exhibit a remarkable series of kites made of—you guessed it—feathers.  Feathers, that is, of non-threatened species and all of which the artist says, have documentation of the legality.

“Paintings and Kites of Judy Enright,” currently on display at the Washtenaw Council for the Arts Visual and Performing Arts Loft, is an aesthetic payback of considerable accomplishment.

By draping this expansive gallery space with 38 kites, which hang gaily from the ceiling above a series of 15 paintings, Enright has realized a multi-media arts event as challenging intellectually as it is challenging professionally.

Her elegant kites, each named after a different species of bird, are a multi-colored delight, crafted after a specific mask and with a birdlike outline.

The paintings—a series of works entitled “Rooms with a View”—follow through with Enright’s adaptation of representational surrealism. Adapting Magritte’s opening of a mundane foreground plane into a fantastic background, Enright adds her own iconography. Each work incorporates a personalized item—a chair or boor, for example—into a decidedly fantastic setting.

Considering the size and scope of this series, “Rooms with a View” is a formidable accomplishment. Enright’s otherworldly representation mingles the real, the possible and the impossible with relative ease.

“Café View” shows Enright at her most relaxed. An art work in which living-room drapery is drawn aside to reveal a sidewalk café, “Café View” is an improbably study where a woman reads a book while a violinist plays.

The gentle setting of the café subdues the hermetic nature of Enright’s images. Like mush representational Surrealism, the why and what of her painting eludes explanation. The tableau seemingly exists merely to exist. By contrast, Enright’s equally fantastic “The Department Store”: falls on the other side of reasonableness.

Where the fantastic in “Café View” is inferred (although not impossible), the fantastic in “The Department Store” is beyond the bounds of reality.

In this instance, a uniformed arm (belonging, say, to an employee of a swank department store) holds an elevator door open for our inspection. The elevator sign says “Bed and Bath,” but tumbling out of the elevator is a tiger in full stride. A menagerie of other exotic animals and fauna occupies the background.

In this work, as in all the paintings in this display and the jaunty kites swaying in the WCA Loft, Enright’s  phantasmagoria  suggest an imagination in full flight.

(*The painting “THE PHOENIX” is currently in Detroit, MI at the Swords Into Plowshares Peace Center.)

THE FLINT JOURNAL – Sunday, May 1, 1994 – Jessie Sirna

The Annual All Media show at Left Bank Gallery, 503 East St., represents the efforts of both professional and amateur artists from the Flint area as well as from around Michigan. ….

While it is often difficult to arrange such a diverse group of works effectively, that is one of the strong points of this show….

Landscapes play a big role in this show—in fact one room is almost entirely given over to the theme and depicts great diversity in style.

An oil by Judy Enright, also an award winner, depicts the traditional rural work theme of “The Sowers” with a large, flat expanse of landscape with tiny figures….

Overall, this show offers a rich diversity of visual effects.

THE DETROIT NEWS – Friday, April 22, 1994- Joy Hakanson Colby

“Enright exotica. Judy Enright’s paintings come across as surreal, symbolic, naïve and sophisticated all at once.  Her one-person exhibit at the Biegas Gallery views a multicultural world through a series of doors and windows and ends up by being a celebration.

For instance, a uniformed arm pulls open an elevator door to reveal an exotic landscape with beasts and birds.  Through open windows we see camels wandering free, sidewalk cafes, waterfalls golden domes, soaring birds, sheep, flower-draped pianos and all sorts of pleasant fantasies.  It takes a while to get with thee pictures, but they’re worth the effort.”

GALERIA BIEGAS – Detroit, MI – March 4, 1994 – G. (Gerome) Kamrowski

“J.E. is a thought-provoking artist. Her world is a fantasy world. Her spirit flies like her kites.

There is a touch of surrealism that adds curiosity and peaks one’s interest. One may have to look a second time before the work catches the inner eye.

This colorful flying world has colorful moods.”

GLOBE - October 5, 1993
“Artist Judy Enright” See Page 23

THE LIVINGSTON CHRONICLE – May 8, 1992 – Special Writer, Nancy Lindeman

“Local artist Judy Enright is a professional with a vision that is, in a word, BIG.

Currently featured in a one-woman exhibit at the North Campus Commons on the University of Michigan campus, Enright is showing 12 of her typically large (average 42 by 60 inches) oil on canvas paintings. The exhibit Enright’s number 12 series, is entitled “Almost Paradise”

 The piéce de résistance of this exhibit is a wall hanging. The piece is hung separate from the main exhibit due to its immensity, and must be seen to be believed and appreciated.

Entitled, Networking , it resembles a space capsule photo of Mothership Earth. Woven around the edge are 41 figures, representing contemporary, historical, and legendary people, and characters from Enright’s own imagination. Each relates to a world made up of human beings.

This piece fits neatly into the over-all exhibit theme for, truly, our Earth—with its diverse and imaginative inhabitants—is, not quite, but close to Paradise. But there is more to this piece, for it is constructed entirely of recyclables, starting with the background for each figure—an onion bag. Stitch together, these 41 panels combine to make a single work of art 37-feet wide by 19-feet high!

Fortunately, for visitors, there is a staircase and balcony opposite Networking, allowing for more varied and closer perspectives. To enhance viewer appreciation, Enright has provided a diagram and typewritten listing for each panel, identifying the figure shown and some of the recycled materials used.

For example, Panel 19, “Bart Simpson,” incorporates a child’s shirt and yo-yo; while Panel 23, “Archangel Gabriel,” contains drapery material, ribbons and feathers. However, such a clinical listing of parts cannot begin to do justice to the whole. Only seeing is believing and this work in particular—with its involving details and whimsical spirit—is appealing to all age groups.

As for the rest of this one=woman show (oh, yes, the paintings!), those in attendance at the opening reception were treated to a multi-media presentation by the artist, in which a slide show, set to carefully selected music, focused on various aspects of each total painting, while the artist explained—not just how her ideas are born, but more importantly—her own art-in-progress process.

As explained by Enright, any particular painting may not be conceived in total beforehand. In “Primrose Path,” for example, a row of stores is there for no particular reason except, at the time, the artist felt she “had to put it in.”  Later on Enright may discover the “reason” while doing book research for other painting ideas. This is a typical Enright characteristic.

Enright recalled one gallery owner commenting that her paintings ask questions but do not give answers.

“Terrific!” was Enright’s response “That’s exactly what I am trying to do.” (No matter, the gallery in question chose not to exhibit her works. Their loss.)

Enright’s paintings involve, according to her own analysis, elements of primitivism, folk art, realism, surrealism, and lots of symbolism.

She is happy to point out any and all symbolic features in her works: a white parrot symbolizes truth, also motherhood; the brightly colored carp swimming in an atypical straight line are “wisdom from the waters of the unconscious”…and the rising moon, …is a feminine symbol There is seemingly no end to the symbolism in her paintings.

It is the abundance of details and the artist’s obvious devotion which makes viewing the paintings both pleasurable and open to a wide variety of interpretations…..

Included for the first time in this show, are a wonder wood sculpture, Tree of Life and a lovely, large alabaster piece entitled Knowledge and Rebirth. The work involved in these two pieces took six years of intense labor. And, of course, they are both very big—Enright guesses the alabaster piece to be around 300 pounds.

Almost Paradise, the exhibit, is indeed paradise for lovers of art—especially for those who have never had the opportunity to “enter into” (for that is the feeling a viewer is likely to experience) an Enright work of art.

Judy Enright’s seventh one-woman art show is being held now through May 29 at the North Campus Commons…..on the University of Michigan North Campus, Ann Arbor, Michigan…..;

Enright has…exhibited many times locally and nationally, including two recent shows at galleries in New York City…….

(See Series # 12 Almost Paradise)


Amanda Cruz - Juror’s statement: “…The range of media and aesthetics in this exhibition is, as it should be, wonderfully varied. I looked not only for strong technique but also unique approach….

I salute the artists in this exhibition and thank them for the opportunity to become acquainted with their work. To submit their work to the scrutinous gaze of a stranger is an act of courage.” 

(See Series #7- LIBERATION)

THE ANN ARBOR NEWS – Sunday, January 6, 1991

“The Annual Theme’ Show: Heart and Soul is currently on display at Clare Spitler Works of Art… …Enright’s oil painting, ‘By the Light of the Moon.’ Is the most distinctive artwork carrying out this year’s exhibition theme. ( See Series 10)

The painting is a peculiarly affecting artwork. A menagerie of African beasts—giraffe, gazelle, elephant, rhinoceros, ox, zebra and cheetah—stand parallel to one another, flanked by neon lamps, within a grove of tall trees. Enright’s blue-greenish pallette  as well as her handling of these trees and a foreground pond reflecting a full moon and shadows of the evening, demonstrate a sharp eye for detail mingled with a definite feel for mysterious fantasy.”


Juror Statement: “I tried to pick a diverse show…There were some tough decision in jurying…One has to…look for strength coming through in areas of value, design and composition. Then you begin to examine even more closely the techniques and execution of the piece. There should always be competent handling of materials good imagery, but always a little mystery or fun. “

(See  Series 7, VIEW FROM PARADISE and Series 10, THE ORANGE TREES.)

DETROIT FREE PRESS, Sept. 24, 1987 – Marsha Miro, Free Press Art Critic, Detroit Artists Market  Fall Opening Show of southeastern Michigan art.

“Jan van der Marck, curator of 20th-Century art at the Detroit Institute of Arts, picked 83 works from 450 entries for this annual Market exhibition.

As usual he has zeroed in on the goodies---paintings predominately neo-expressionist but of individual vision and quality; …..

It’s reassuring to see that art of this caliber is being produced by yet another generation of local artists…..

Judy Enright and Lucille Nawara show prime works of slightly more serene demeanor.”

(See Series #5 – THE FOX HUNT)

THE BAY CITY TIMES – Sunday, February 17, 1974 – Margaret Allison,  Bay City Times Critic.

“Studio 23’s area award show opening today had 94 pieces by 50 artists on exhibit, all of superior quality and divergent in interest…

The high number of entries, and general quality of work, added to the difficulty of selection by the three jurors, Ralph A. Misiak and Norman Williams, professional artists from Saginaw, and Mrs. Katharine Ux, Central Michigan University art teacher….

…award winners include: Drawing  (by) Judy Enright of Bay City.” (No photo available.)

© Judy Enright 2012