Friday, April 22, 2011

Sharing the Fine Arts

What a great day it was at the “Out of the Woods” exhibit in Center City Galleries.  The Adult Training Centers of Cerebral Palsy of North Jersey came to the exhibit.  There were three clients and their leader Carmen who became the photographer.  When they first expressed an interest in coming to the gallery, I was excited to have an opportunity to use the fine art show as a community education tool.  As the economy falls, the support of art programs in and out of schools falls with it, which makes it really important that alternative avenues find ways to expose ALL people to fine arts.

As we discussed the assemblage and paintings at the show, I found myself grow in excitement.  The clients were seeing things that I had never thought of and it was a fun growing experience to look at my work through their eyes.  I asked them what they saw when looking at the assemblage; 

One said, “A Surprise!” and another said, “An earring!”  Then they added it would be elegant and not quite hit the shoulder – I could see it - and another said but if you think about it bigger, it could be a necklace.  So, many people in the past have said that my assemblage-no matter how big-has the feel of jewelry, and in this moment I could really see it.  Thank you, guys!  
                        Carmine Center City Galleries Head Honcho has Jokes!
I am smiling as I write this.  We also had a lot of fun, when we looked at Judith Peck’s woman,

We moved our bodies like snakes making sounds and laughing, and 

when we explored the painted door, “Guide” we animated the sounds of the drum.

After exploring the assemblage art the three created their own artwork.  Again, they amazed me, by being very clear on how they wanted their art to look.  

They were careful to look at their art from multiple sides and the finished pieces were definitely good enough to hang in a show. 

I so want to thank The Center City Galleries of Patterson for providing us with the space and the Adult Training Centers for Cerebral Palsy of North Jersey for coming to the “Out of the Woods” exhibit – it was great!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

A Great Reward: A Reception

I don’t believe that it has been a week and a half since the opening reception of the “Out of the Woods” exhibition.  It is one thing to go to gallery openings and another to be one of the featured artists.  There was a time that gallery hopping openings provided my dinner, a glass of wine and conversation in an interesting environment.  (Note that the dinner of cheese crackers and free libations were very critical.)  But I digress.  Upon entering the exhibition space, a wave of good cheer filled the sense, jazz, food, wine all in the presence of nature coming to life as Art.

Most of the attendees I have known for many years, and to my surprise they did not realize the multiple levels to my art.  I have come to realize that saying I am an artist is not something that has a clear definition like a doctor or teacher.  Even in art, there are understood titles like 'ceramicist', 'landscape painter' or 'figurative sculptor,' but a string of words like, mixed-medium, repurposed objects, assemblage sculptor, painter, crafter, lyricist, impressionist, abstract and folk artist all are also a part of ones definition. Saying, “ I’m an artist” is easiest. 

 The reception was three hours; just a perfect amount of time.  It is funny to me how many hours of work, phone calls, transportation, imagination, negotiation, money, tools, and compassion go into creating a 3-hour celebration.  And, yet driving home that night there was nothing more that I could have asked for-it was just perfect.  I thank all of those who came out to support Judith Peck and I at the “Out of the Woods.” Exhibition Celebration.  What a great reward this reception has been for me!          

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

A Peek at the Show

Hanging the Show is so exciting.  To my surprise so far, there have been no glitches; just smooth sailing.  On Friday I arrived at the Center City Galleries in Paterson NJ with two car loads of art work. Deon (one of the artists), was there waiting to move my precious cargo through the maze of elevators, corridors, and people to their new home for the month, the gallery.  We were toting branches, bark, and old vintage doors though the mall.  At one point I locked eyes with a passerby and she had the strangest look on her face.  It never dawned on me until that moment how strange we must have looked.

Deon, who was to assist me in hanging the show, went for lunch, and I stood in a huge room with my art strewn all over the floor.  I took a minute to relax and slowly things started to flow, in no time one wall was figured out and another then an other.  I was even visualizing Judith Peck's sculptures being placed.  By the time Deon returned, just about everything was placed and ready for hanging.  Mind you, hanging art work is not always the easiest, but between the two of us we figured out even the oddest requirements like, hanging mobiles and doors on hinges.  Half way through, Carmine the head honcho and man who offered me this opportunity, came to check on us.  The first thing he said was,  "Oh, this looks really good thats what you were thinking.  When I saw it on the floor I was worried, it looked a mess."  As we laughed, my mind shot over to the funny look on the woman's face when we were hauling the art through the mall.  Carmine sees art every day and was confused, so I can imagine what she thought.  I laughed an extra laugh at the thought.

The next day Judith arrived with a van load and Deon help us get her work in and placed.  Her work looks fabulous even better than I had imaged.  I am so grateful to her for joining with me in this exhibit.  There were only a few pieces that we were stomped with placing and a little moving here to there and back and we got it.  I have to thank Carmine for the space and his light hearted laughter, Deon for his willingess to help and sensitive insight and Judith for her beautiful creativity and wealth of knowledge.

The show is
Center City Galleries
301 Main St. Paterson, NJ
973 - 881 - 0001

April 9, 2011
6PM to 9PM
Show will Run April 3 - 28 hours 11AM - 6PM