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Mastrangelo Won 1st Place in Sculpture

Bobbi Mastrangelo won first prize for sculpture at the Osceola Center for the Arts 2009 Annual Juried Art Show in May.
“The Essential Element” was selected for first prize from three of Bobbi’s entries. This miniature rotating sculpture packed a powerful message: “To globally conserve and protect our precious resource of water.”
Fifty-three artists competed for top prizes in five categories. Research, dedication and passion were poured into all three of the works that were accepted at The Center’s Juried Exhibit.  Naturally, I had secret hopes to win a prize.  But this year’s submissions were miniatures. Perhaps they would be overlooked.
First Prize in Sculpture!  When Jules Davidson called my name I was absolutely euphoric. And the bonus was that a first prize was also a cash award. My husband Al, friends and art colleagues were there to share this special honor.
"The Essential eEement"
 “The Essential Element”

One would think that a miniature work could be finished quickly in contrast to my actual size manhole cover works. Truthfully, I enjoy challenges and problem solving. As I created the sculpture, I had to make sure that the clear cube cover would fit over it.
So I had to insert the side pieces instead of having them protrude.

Terraced Crop Watering Carrying Water in Asia 
Terraced Crop Watering (left insert)    Carrying Water in Asia  (Right Insert)

The Three Water Carriers were the most interesting image to face the Mirror side of Cube Cover. On the mirror back outside of the cube, I posted the theme message of the piece:

“Two thirds of the world is composed of water, but less than one percent is suitable for drinking.”
I discovered reference material in The Dow Chemical Brochure on protecting global waters.

2/3 Water
The Three Water Carriers Two thirds of the world is composed of water

I thought the Sculpture was finished, until Judy Hablewitz, costume designer for the Solivita Starlighters, said that to be effective, the sculpture really needed to rotate.

Harvey Factor, The Starlighter’s Technical Director suggested contacting Dave Butler from the Technical Crew. Boy was I fortunate. Dave, who had built and designed model ships and hundreds of miniature doll houses, had just what I needed. He provided me with several tiny turn tables and wooden support disks.

Winning the award was possible due to the support and advice of my husband, friends and colleagues here in The Solivita Community.

38 replies on “Mastrangelo Won 1st Place in Sculpture”

Good going!! You do have “Grateworks”!
Maureen Smith
Solivita Artisan’s Guild Painter

Hi Bobbi,

Big Congrats to you!
That’s so great about your award!
You certainly deserve it!

Best wishes,
Judy Mastrangelo,
Fantasy Artist
and Long Time Friend.

Hey Bobbi!!
I think its great!! Al told me about this before the email..

always good to hear a self taught artist makes the top!!

Congrads… Doug Leffert

5/7/2009 11:51:54 P.M.

WOW! I am so happy for you! You are a very, very special person and also very talented in your art. I am proud to know you and proud to be an artist as well as YOU always inspire me! Love You! Lynn

AWESOME Bobbi!!!!!!!!!!!!
Loved the colors you used in the manhole and the message of what we put in the water and the many uses it has to human consumption and elementary need. Keep up the GRATE WORK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
With Love,
Your Dress Designer
P.S. Your latest is the greatest!

Congratulations! It’s an inspiration to witness your growth as an artist over the years!

Dear Bobbi,
Thanks for sharing the news about this award. Congratulations.
It’s so great to hear that great recognition continues for Grateworks.
Most deserved!!!!
Your Brother,

Dear Aunt Bobbi,

Congratulations on your recent first prize win! I’m so glad you included me on your e-mail list. Please let me know if you ever have any exhibitions or shows in the New York area in the future, as I’d love to attend.
With love,
Marie Mc Auley


Congratulations. I am glad I had a little hand in your success. Good luck and if I can be of help in the future please let me know.
David Butler of Solivita

Fantastic! This a true blend of your creative artistry and appreciation of the blessings of our environment. Thank you for sharing the news of your recognition. You are a winner–and a good friend!

Congratulations Bobbi,

The judges did an excellent job! For First Place I also say, yes, deservingly so for the original idea of “The Essential Element”. This sculpture has and is, undoubtedly, holding the interest of viewers. The artist who can replicate and elevate an object so effecively (and with its meaningful message), is worthy of high recognition.

Such good news!


Dear Bobbi,
Congratulations on winning first place!
I’m not surprised, you are so talented.
I sent this to my daughter in CA; she used to do art work, but unfortunately, has no time with her job and now her babies.

I was so excited to see you had won first place with your Essentials piece’ I remember all our conversations about your Grateworks many years ago. I saw one in Dr. Peterson’s office a few months ago. I am proud to own one of your florals.
China Painter

Dear Bobbi,
You do such wonderful work. The bright colors are very striking; and I love the left and right inserts.

You certainly deserve winning first prize!
All my best,
Solivita Artisan Guild Member

Hello Bobbi!!!!

I am so excited about this sculpture!!!!
It not only is beautiful but it Moves!!!!!
What will you think of next?
Marilyn Abt


Congratulations on your 1st Place.
There’s no stopping a Maryvale Flyer!!!
Tony Queeno BSTC Graduate
Who later taught at Maryvale HS


Congratulations. A well-deserved honor.

Mary Ann Wiedmont
Author from “Sol Writers”

Bravo Bobbi. Congratualtions!

Russ and I are hiking the Camino de Santiago de Compostela starting Wed for a month. We will be posting reports on our blog if you would like to see what this pilgrimage is like. The site is

Happy Mother’s Day.

Peg Hall


Congratulations on yet another
great accomplisment. May God
continue to bring many more
blessing for years to come…

James Pons
in the Military

I would love to see these sculptures–grate way to communicate to the world–through your art and your reminders to us all.

Bonnie T.

HI Bobbi:

How wonderful for you and for all those new to your talents to have the recognition of this award. I hope you have settled in to Florida and are enjoying not only your artistic achievement but the lifestyle and creative energy that Florida can provide.

Wishing you more well deserved success and all the best.

Mari B. Ross, Director

Baltimore Public Works Museum

Dear Bobbi,
I’m so excited for you and quite proud of your continued growth and accomplishments as an artist. Your art reflects your wonderful imagination, exciting creativity and your love of a challenge.

May you continue to follow your passion…

Terry Arzillo
Smithtown Teacher Center

Hi Bobbi,
Congratulations — your First Prize is so well deserved!!! Your caring spirit and creativity continue to be an inspiration to me and your artwork not only brings awareness to the environment, but also changes the world.

I look forward to seeing what you do next…
Best wishes and hugs,

Dear Bobbi, Congratulations on your achievement. The work has great strength, and reminds us of the fact that water is a requirement of life and the need to protect the environment. I am so proud of you. Love to you and Al. Linda

Dear Bobbi,

If anyone desrves first prize ’tis certainly you! Congratulations!! “Pop” would (is) so proud of you as am I.

I do miss seeing you and having our little chats….so long ago yet so close to my heart.

Love and Blessings,

Hey Bobbi,

It’s Jon from across the street. I finally got around to checking out the website, and I wanted to tell you that you certainly have a new fan of your artwork over here.

I’m genuinely impressed with how you’ve managed to turn ordinary manhole covers into art. A truly unique idea. You’ve done a great job with the website too. The poetry, the manhole covers, and the website itself all are very well done.

Keep up the good work Bobbi, and I look forward to seeing some new artwork in the future

Your neighbor,
Jon from across the street…

Glad to know of your great success….
I’m very proud of you.
I saw your work yesterday in the Islip, NY Art Museum.
Dan Welden
Your Former Instructor
Artist, Solar Plate Printer

Hey Bobbi,
Every time I see your work, it brings back great memories of growing up in Greenpoint/Williamsburg Brooklyn.

As kids we played, like everybody else in the streets.
Weather it was “punch ball” or “stick ball “or “ring -o-levio” -sewers were the basis for the game-they were central to the games or better still pivotal to the games.

As a result I became very aware of the
intricate art work and history for each type.
So what I’m saying is that your work always brings
moments of great peace and joy of my “Kid” years.

With many blessings for sharing your gift,
Nunzio Cazzetta

Dear Bobbi,
While reading the NY State Teachers Magazine,
I noticed an article about you winning first place
in sculpture at the Osceola Center for the Arts
in Kissimmee.
How great that you have made such a
name for yourself with your message
about protecting our water supply.
I have the card with the “Irish Blessing ” Sculpture on my desk. You sent it to me July 2005, 50 years after your graduation.
It is one of my treasures.
I wish you continued success and joy in your work.
With warm regards,
Rosemary Leas,
One of your former teachers at Maryvale HS

I love looking at your work. When I tell my friends that I have a very famous cousin who is an artist and replicates manhole covers, their first response is Whaaaaat?!
Then I have the opportunity to tell them how I did the rubbings for you on the Punta Gorda covers, taking a picture from an ants view. We all laugh and have a grate time!!
Your Cousin,

Hi Bobbi,
I was so happy with the success of your grate works which I witnessed so long ago.
Virginia Cox,


You are such an inspiration to all that anything is possible!
I especially connected with the Spirits of Sedona…

Let’s keep working for water and leaving behind grateworks 🙂


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