Area Museums

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Art by the River

Art In Trenton

Art in the Workplace

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This article by F.R. Rivera was prepared for the October 30, 2002 edition of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.

Art Review: ArtistaCUBA

The Triumph Brewing Company is not the most hospitable

environment in which to display and view art — but art work as

bracing and assertive as "ArtistaCUBA" more than holds its

own against dark walls and dim lights. The show’s curator and entrepreneur

Jorge Luis Armenteros is seeking a more compatible environment, but

until something better comes along, he says, he is grateful to have

so much space in downtown Princeton. For the future, "about 5,000

square feet" will do, he adds. Armenteros obviously thinks big.

A master tobacconist and aficionado, born in Miami, Armenteros smoked

his first cigar at the age of four. A graduate of American University,

where he majored in international business, he came to New Jersey

in 1995. His market research indicated that Princeton, New Hope, and

Marietta, Georgia, would be good locations for three high-end cigar

shops. He implemented the idea; one of his Little Taste of Cuba cigar

shops is on Witherspoon Street.

Armenteros made his first trip to Cuba in 1996, and the same year

began collecting Cuban art. He sold his first painting in 1998. He

is not unlike another collector who also thought big — Albert

C. Barnes — who went to Paris in the 1920s and brought back dozens

of Renoirs, Cezannes, Soutines, and more to his Philadelphia area

home. Armenteros’ last trip to Cuba netted 224 works by 16 artists

and his own personal collection numbers 40.

About 60 works brought from Cuba are on view at the Triumph Brewing

Company. Characterized in the show’s publicity as "folk art,"

they are not, however, naive art; many pieces were produced by trained

professionals, some of whom attended the 100-year-old Academy of Contemporary

Art in Havana.

It is unlikely that we are looking at contemporary equivalents of

Renoir or Cezanne at the Triumph Brewing Company, but the budding

collector will find great values in dozens of little masterworks.

There is hip, cutting-edge art here. Some of it recalls the great,

underground comics of the late 1980s that gave us our first look at

artists like Art Spiegelman of "MAUS" fame.

ArtistaCUBA is a sassy irreverent art; and the artists are like the

masked revelers in a continuous "Carnivale," swapping identities

by working in different genres as the spirit moves them. Taken together,

the work has the compelling vitality of a fabulous street party.

The paintings are so packed with gutsy imagery that they compete like

bare-knuckle contenders for our attention. Painted creatures of every

stripe, like those in real carnivale, ambush us at every turn. Hungry

kittens, for example, stalk a computer mouse; a sailor-boy astride

a giant banana floats a kite under a galaxy of stars; and a sock puppet

torments a winged, blue-armored rhino.

Disembodied toothy grins and almond eyes chase us down

precipitous chutes past tattoo parlors and gadget shops into a world

of quilted squares.

The astute observer will be looking, but there are neither Marxist

guerrillas nor anti-Cuban subversives lurking in the shadows, unless

they are, perhaps graced by false noses or hidden behind rubber masks.

Nor is one likely to find any coded messages, since every painting

is screened and certified by the Cuban government, receiving its own

stamp of approval before it leaves the island.

The most impressive of the many outstanding artists represented in

this show are those who explore the unpredictable — Alberto Diequez,

Li, and Elio Villate. They mismatch characters with props, and props

with scenes, painting them as smoothly and predictably as a Disney

cell and then — boom! — comes Zigger, the blooper, the pratfall.

In Diequez’ work, for example, smooth sailing shapes of color get

whacked by broken lines that resemble machine stitchery run amok.

Villate depicts a high-wire act with a mooning buttocks.

According to Armenteros, Li is a toothless, humorously eccentric woman

in her 50s who is always accompanied by her parrot — even when

she is painting. Her irresistible works include a series of "Suenos

Cubanos" (Cuban Dreams), wonderful Chagall-like fantasies in which

the art medium seems to be pure confectioner’s sugar. The centerpiece

is a dreamlike cottage, glowing like a wedding cake in rose and violet

hues. A sudden outcropping of broccoli trees surrounds it.

These paintings so seduced Armenteros that he bought scores of them

outright to bring "home" to New Jersey. He wants nothing more

than to share them and to place them. "Art needs a home,"

he says. "When I sell a good cigar," he adds, "I give

an hour of pleasure; good painting affords a lifetime of pleasure."

— F.R. Rivera

ArtistaCUBA, Triumph Brewing Company, 138 Nassau Street,

609-924-7855. An exhibition of contemporary Cuban art. Show is on

view through December 30.

Top Of Page
Area Museums

American Hungarian Foundation Museum, 300 Somerset Street,

New Brunswick, 732-846-5777. "From the Old World to the New World,"

recent additions to the collection featuring works by nine Hungarian

Americans who emigrated to the U.S. between 1920 and 1957. Artists

are Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, Bertha and Elena De Hellenbranth, Sandor Sugor,

Emil Kelemen, Willy Pogany, Tibor Gergely, Zoltan Poharnok, and Vincent

Korda. Tuesday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; and Sunday, 1 to 4

p.m. $5 donation. To April.

Cornelius Low House Museum, 1225 River Road, Piscataway,

732-745-4177. "Uncommon Clay: New Jersey’s Architectural Terra

Cotta Industry," an exhibition of artifacts and written and oral

histories of the once booming architectural ceramics industry. Open

Tuesday through Friday, 1 to 4 p.m.; and Sunday, 1 to 4 p.m.

Hunterdon Museum of Art, Lower Center Street, Clinton,

908-735-8415. "Fifty Years: The History of the Hunterdon Museum

of Art." Tuesday to Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. To November 17.

Michener Art Museum, 138 South Pine Street, Doylestown,

215-340-9800. "Earth, River, and Light: Masterworks of Pennsylvania

Impressionism," an exhibition of notable and rarely exhibited

Pennylvania Impressionist works drawn from the private holdings of

regional collectors. The touring show originates at the Michener and

is accompanied by a new, comprehensive study of Pennslyvania Impressionism

by Brian Peterson; to December 29. $6; $3 child.

Also "The Berenstain Bears Celebrate: The Art of Stan and Jan

Berenstain," the storybook authors’ first museum retrospective,

organized by the Norman Rockwell Museum and curated by David Leopold.

The show coincides with the publication of "Down a Sunny Dirt

Road: An Autobiography" by Random House; to January 12. $10 adult;

$7 child.

Also, "Retreating to Ideal Environments," works from the New

Hope colony by Daniel Garber, Fern Coppedge, Robert Spencer, and others;

to February 2. Open Tuesday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Saturday

and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Wednesday evenings to 9 p.m.

New Jersey Museum of Agriculture, College Farm Road and

Route 1, North Brunswick, 732-249-2077. "Barnscapes: The Changing

Face of Agriculture in New Jersey," photographs of New Jersey

barns and farmlands, with 42 images by New Jersey landscape photographer

Louise Rosskam. On view to January 17. $4 adults, $2 children.

New Jersey State Museum, 205 West State Street, Trenton,

609-292-6464. "Searching: New Jersey Photographers and September

11," works by Stanley Brick, Donna Clovis, Donald Lokuta, and

Phil McAuliffe; to November 24. "River of Leisure: Recreation

Along the Delaware," to November 3. "Cruising Down the Delaware:

Natural History You Can See," an introduction to New Jersey’s

natural features by the historic waterway, to November 10. Museum

hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.; Sunday noon

to 5 p.m.

Also "American Indians as Artists: The Beginnings of the

State Museum’s Ethnographic Collection," to September 15. "A

Decade of Collecting, Part 1," to January 5. On extended view:

"Art by African-Americans: A Selection from the Collection;"

"New Jersey’s Native Americans: The Archaeological Record;"

"Delaware Indians of New Jersey;" "The Sisler Collection

of North American Mammals;" "Of Rock and Fire;" "Neptune’s

Architects;" "The Modernists;" "New Jersey Ceramics,

Silver, Glass and Iron;" "Historical Archaeology of Colonial

New Jersey;" "Washington Crossing the Delaware."

New Jersey State Museum, Cafe Gallery, 205 West State

Street, Trenton, 609-394-9535. Woodblock prints by Idaherma Williams,

an artist who prints all her editions without a press as a reflection

of her respect for the beauty of the woodcut. Sales benefit the New

Jersey State Museum. To November 3.

New Jersey State Museum, Department of State, 225

West State Street, Trenton, 609-292-6464. "A Decade of Collecting:

Works from the Museum’s Archaeological, Ethnographic, and Natural

History Collections." Open Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.,

to January 5, 2003.

Area Galleries

Artful Deposit Gallery, 1 Church Street, Allentown, 609-259-3234.

New works by Bill Giacalone. Open Wednesday through Sunday and evenings

by appointment. To December 1.

Artful Deposit Gallery, 201 Farnsworth Avenue, Bordentown,

609-298-6970. Group show by new gallery artists Eugene Maziarz, Joe

Kassa, and Ed DeWitt. Open Thursday through Saturday, 4 to 8 p.m..

Sunday, 1 to 4 p.m. To December 15.

Gallery 14, 14 Mercer Street, Hopewell, 609-333-8511.

Exhibition of works by members and their guests. Exhibitors include

Selena Persico, Peter Roos, Robert Borsuk, Ken Kaplowitz, William

van der Veer, Nancy Ori, and Frank Magalhaes. Techniques range from

platinum prints to manipulated Polaroids. Gallery hours are Saturday

and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. To November 17.

Holroyd Gallery, 35 West Broad Street, Hopewell, 609-466-0556.

In the Broad Street Antiques Center, a gallery featuring the oil,

pastel, and watercolor paintings of Olga Holroyd. Open Wednesday to

Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Montgomery Center for the Arts, 1860 House, 124 Montgomery

Road, 609-921-3272. In the Upstairs Gallery, "Color Rhythms,"

a shared exhibition of watercolors, ink, calligraphy, and mixed-media

works by Seow-Chu See and Gloria Wiernik. Meet the artists Sundays,

October 27, and November 3, at 1 p.m. Gallery hours are Tuesdays through

Fridays, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Sundays 1 to 4 p.m. To November 5.

Plainsboro Public Library, Plainsboro Road, 609-275-2897.

Exhibit of aerial photography by Jessica R. Stearns. With a 20-year

career in the Air Force, and 16 years as a Continental Airlines pilot,

her photographs explore the play of light on clouds and the textures

of nature. To November 9.

Printmaking Council of New Jersey, 440 River Road, North

Branch Station, 908-725-2110. "Crossing the Continent: Contemporary

Native American Works on Paper" with works by Rick Bartow, Corwin

Clairmont, Joe Feddersen, Hachivi Edgar Heep of Birds, James Lavadour,

and Jaune Quick-to-See Smith. Gallery hours are Wednesday through

Friday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Saturday, 1 to 4 p.m. To November 2.

Triangle Art Center Gallery, Route 1 and Darrah Lane,

Lawrenceville, 609-296-0334. Garden State Watercolor Society sixth

annual Associate Member Juried Exhibition, judged by Betty Stroppel

and Ed Baumlin. To November 22.

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Campus Arts

Princeton University Art Museum, 609-258-3788. "Cezanne

in Focus: Watercolors from the Henry and Rose Pearlman Collection,"

an exhibition of 16 rarely-seen works on paper by the precursor of

modern painting. On long-term loan to the museum since 1976, the works

are rarely shown due to their sensitivity to light. To January 12.

Also "Beyond the Visible: A Conservator’s Perspective;" to

January 5. "Lewis Baltz: Nevada and Other Photographs," an

exhibition of recently acquired photographs and series by Lewis Baltz;

to January 19. "Earth’s Beauty Revealed: The 19th-Century European

Landscape;" to January 12. "Photographs from the Peter C.

Bunnell Collection," to October 27. Open Tuesday through Saturday,

10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday 1 to 5 p.m.

Milberg Gallery, Firestone Library, Princeton University,

609-258-3184. "Unseen Hands: Women Printers, Binders, and Book

Designers," a Milberg Gallery exhibition curated by Rebecca Warren

Davidson. Curator tours at 3 p.m. on November 2, January 5, and March

2.

Bernstein Gallery, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson

School, Robertson Hall, 609-258-1651. "After September 11,"

an exhibition that explores how the work of area artists has been

influenced by the events of September 11, with Robert Beck, Eleanor

Burnette, Thom Cooney Crawford, Alan Goldstein, Margaret Kennard Johnson,

Amy Kosh, Ken McIndoe, Barbara Osterman, Margaret Rosen, Ludvic Saleh,

Sheba Sharrow, and Madelaine Shellaby. Open Monday to Friday, 9 a.m.

to 5 p.m. To December 1.

College of New Jersey, Art Gallery, Holman Hall, Ewing,

609-771-2198. "Evidencing: Drawing with Light and Pixels,"

a photography exhibition curated by Anita Allyn featuring works by

artists Mathieu Borysevicz, Deborah Bright, Colette Copeland, Mary

Frey, Shauna Frischkorn, Judy Gelles, L. Halsey Brown, and Will Pappenheimer.

Open Monday through Friday, noon to 3 p.m.; Thursday 7 to 9 p.m.;

and Sunday, 1 to 3 p.m. To November 6.

Lawrenceville School, Gruss Center of Visual Arts, Lawrenceville,

609-620-6026. In the Hutchins Gallery, Faculty Exhibition with Brian

Daniell, Allen Fitzpatrick, Jamie Greenfield, Leonid Siveriver, William

Vandever, and Ed Robbins; to November 2. Also "Building a Teaching

Collection: New Acquisitions in Photography;" to November 18.

Open Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to noon; and 1 to 4:30 p.m.; Wednesday

and Saturday, 9 a.m. to noon.

Gallery at Mercer County College, Communications Center,

609-586-4800, ext. 3589. "The Faculty," paintings by Mel Leipzig

of his MCCC colleagues. To November 7.

Leipzig has participated in numerous one-man and groups shows from

the East Coast to Moscow. His works are in permanent collections that

include the White House and the Cooper-Hewitt Museum. And his painting

of photographer Lou Draper was recently selected for the collecction

of the Whitney Museum of American Art.

Mason Gross Galleries, Civic Square, 33 Livingston Avenue,

New Brunswick, 732-932-2222. "Flying Colors Take Wing," a

show by A.R.T. featuring 100 paintings by physically-challenged artists.

The exhibition coincides with the launch of the book "Flying Colors"

by A.R.T. founder and director Tim Lefens (Beacon Press) which celebrates

the artists, and the revolutionary techniques that enable people with

the most severe physical challenges to express themselves creatively.

Gallery open Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. To October 31.

Princeton Theological Seminary, Erdman Hall Gallery, 20

Library Place, 609-497-7990. "Mountain Tops," an exhibition

of miniature landscape sculptures of natural stones and sand by William

Brower, poet, sculptor, and seminary faculty member emeritus. Open

Monday to Saturday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Sunday 2 to 8 p.m. To

November 30.

Zimmerli Art Museum, George and Hamilton streets, New

Brunswick, 732-932-7237. Exhibitions include: "Sonia Delaunay:

La Moderne," celebrating the accomplishments of the key figure

(1885 to 1979) in the development of 20th-century abstraction; to

December 28.

Also "Yurii Dyshlenko: Abstraction, Modernity, and Mass Media;"

to January 12. "The National Association of Women Artists Collection

at Rutgers," to December 8. "Identity and Resistance: Abstract

Painting from the Dodge Collection," to November 17. "Ben

Shahn: The Rilke Portfolio," to December 31. "Keeping Up Appearances:

Fashion in 19th Century France," to November 7. Museum hours are

Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday,

noon to 5 p.m. Spotlight tours every Sunday at 2 and 3 p.m. Admission

$3 adults; under 18 free; and free on the first Sunday of every month.

Top Of Page
Art by the River

ABC Gallery, Lambertville Public Library, 6 Lilly Street,

609-397-0275. "Prints, Paintings and Progression," group exhibit

by 12 students of Susan Roseman and James Feehan. Exibitors include

Bette Baer, Laura Blasenheim, Merle Citron, John Marcus, and Lola

Wykoff. Gallery hours are Monday to Thursday, 1 to 9 p.m.; Friday

1 to 5 p.m.; and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. To November 22.

Artists’ Gallery, 32 Coryell Street, Lambertville, 609-397-4588.

"Not Just Chickens," a shared show of complementary impressions

of everyday life by Gail Bracegirdle and Ruth Laks. Gallery hours

are Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. To November 3.

Robert Beck Painting Studio, 21 Bridge Street, Lambertville,

609-397-5679. "Excursion," part of Beck’s American Road series,

painted on site in Maine, Washington, D.C., and Bucks County. Also

the Mississippi River series painted in September aboard a working

townboat pushing barges from St. Louis to New Orleans. Open Saturdays

and Sundays, noon to 5 p.m., and weekdays by appointment. To November

17.

Coryell Gallery, 8 Coryell Street, Lambertville, 609-397-0804.

Fall exhibition features New Jersey artists, Alexander Farnham and

Charles McVicker. Farnham, a noted landscape painter, is known for

his interest in patterns of light and shadow. Open Wednesday to Sunday,

noon to 5 p.m. To November 17.

Gratz Gallery, 30 West Bridge Street, New Hope, 215-862-4300.

"Melville Stark and the Pennsylvania Impressionists." Part

of proceeds benefit the Michener Museum of Art’s New Hope satellite

art center. Open Wednesday to Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday,

noon to 6 p.m. To November 3.

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Art In Trenton

Artworks, 19 Everett Alley, Trenton, 609-394-9436. "Digital

Print Interpretations," an exhibition of archival inkjet prints

by Ruane Miller, Dallas Piotrowski, Fay Sciarra, Madelaine Shellaby,

and William Vandever. Gallery hours are Monday to Friday 9 a.m. to

5 p.m. To November 1.

Ellarslie, Trenton City Museum, Cadwalader Park, 609-989-3632.

Tom Kelly, Jack Knight, and Isabella Natale, an introspective and

humorous show by three area artists. Also "Crowns: Portraits of

Black Women in Church Hats" by Michael Cunningham. Museum hours

are Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Sunday, 1 to 4 p.m.

To November 10.

Grounds for Sculpture, 18 Fairgrounds Road, Hamilton,

609-586-0616. Fall/Winter Exhibition. In the Museum, new work by glass

artist Dale Chihuly, to April 6, 2003. In the Domestic Arts Building,

work by winners of 2002 Outstanding Student Achievement in Contemporary

Sculpture Award, to January 10, 2003. Regular park admission $4 to

$10.

Open Tuesday through Sunday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., year round; Sunday

is Members Day. Adult admission $4 Tuesday through Thursday; $7 Friday

and Saturday; and $10 Sunday. Memberships start at $55.

Extension Gallery, 60 Sculptors Way, Mercerville, 609-890-7777.

"Vessels," an exhibit of sculpture and photographs by Rory

Mahon. Open Monday to Thursday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. To November 7.

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Art in the Workplace

Gallery at Bristol-Myers Squibb, Route 206, Lawrenceville,

609-252-6275. "Up the River, Now" an exhibition of works by

contemporary painters in the Delaware Valley area. Artists include

Elizabeth Augenblick, Joseph Barrett, Robert Beck, Malcolm Bray, Tom

Chesar, Anne Cooper Dobbins, Suzanne Douglass, Evelyn Faherty, and

James Feehan. Open Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; weekends and

holidays, 1 to 5 p.m. To December 1.

Art in Town

Anne Reid Art Gallery, Princeton Day School, Great Road,

609-924-6700. Jules Schaeffer Retrospective with more than 30 found

object-welded sculptures, assemblages, monoprints, and works on paper.

Gallery is open weekdays, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. To November 14.

Chapin School, 4101 Princeton Pike, 609-924-7206. "Life

is Just Better with Trento!" Trenton artist Thomas Reaves’ show

includes paintings, illustrations, and designs, created with the idea

of starting a souvenir shop for the capital city’s move toward becoming

a tourist destination. Open during school hours; to November 8.

Historical Society of Princeton, Bainbridge House, 158

Nassau Street, 609-921-6748. "From Tow Path to Bike Path: Princeton

and the Delaware and Raritan Canal," an exhibition on the history

and creation of the canal, the life of death of its workers, and recent

environmental and preservation issues. Open Tuesday to Sunday, noon

to 4 p.m. Show runs to March, 2003.

Medical Center at Princeton, 253 Witherspoon Street, 609-497-4192.

Dining room show of original paintings by Livy Glaubitz. Fond of capturing

scenes and architecture in watercolor paintings and pen and ink drawings,

she was first place winner in the 2001 Garden State Watercolor juried

exhibition. Part of proceeds benefit the Medical Center. Show may

be viewed daily from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. To November 13.

SweeTree Gallery, 286 Alexander Street, 609-934-8665.

"Crowning Glories," a display of African-American church hats

from the collection of Trenton milliner Mayolyn Saunders, mounted

in conjunction with the McCarter Theater’s new musical, "Crowns."

Also, paintings by Phylisha Gilchrease, a Newark-born artist and mother

of four who has been drawing and painting since childhood. Shows to

November 3.

Triumph Brewing Company, 138 Nassau Street, 609-924-7855.

Jorge Armenteros, owner of Little Taste of Cuba, introduces "Artista

Cuba," an exhibition of contemporary Cuban folk art presented

on the walls of Triumph. Show is on view through December.

Armenteros has been studying and collecting Cuban art since 1996.

He gravitates toward art that illustrates "the spirit of the Cuban

people, their creativity, inspiration, sensuality, and zest for life."

His collection includes works from the fine art world as well as rustic

art made of found materials. "At its best, Cuban folk art is vivid,

symbolic, sensual, and inspiring. In it, you will find a purity of

appreciation for light, color, and life’s simple pleasures," he

says.


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