Art in Town

Art On Campus

Art by the River

Art in the Workplace

Art In Trenton

Other Galleries

To the North

Other Museums

Corrections or additions?

Prepared for the September 5, 2000 edition of U.S. 1 Newspaper.

All rights reserved.

Backstage at Mercer Gallery

To produce a gallery’s one-page overview of six art

exhibitions over the course of an academic year is not a difficult

task. It’s the behind-the-scenes eye, arm, voice, and leg work —

not to mention brain and heart work, and the never ending


— that takes the time and makes the difference. And makes that

single sheet possible.

As she begins her second year as director and curator of the Gallery

at Mercer County Community College, Tricia Fagan also kicks off the

first season she has curated. Last year’s shows had already been


when she moved in to the gallery position. That gave her time to learn

the place and its systems for getting things done — and to line

up this year’s exhibits.

Fagan, who brought a breadth of arts experience to the college, has

put together a season that ranges from provocative narrative paintings

and computer art to sculpture, abstract paintings, prints and handmade

paper. In the spring, the gallery hosts two regular events, first

the "Mercer County Artists 2001," and then "Visual Arts

Student Show 2001."

Opening the season is "Narrative Stance," a shared show by

painters Loring Hughes and Thomas Kelly that continues through


28. A reception is scheduled for Wednesday, September 13, from 5 to

7:30 p.m., followed by a gallery talk on Wednesday, September 20,

at 7 p.m. This pattern holds true for each of the four exhibitions

of Fagan’s main season.

Loring Hughes’ paintings, which look at first like scary drawings

with spots of high color, bear close study. They’re macabre, yet often

funny; sometimes dream-inspired, and yet grounded in real life, and

death. "King Mummy" has got to be Elvis. "Serial Killer

Beauty Contest" — itself a bizarre notion — features a

line of murderers whose "styles" differ, while a man wearing

a distinctive tam-o’-shanter is among the spectators. "Preacher

Killing Snakes in My Backyard," reportedly straight from the


dream world, shows a man with a hatchet and any number of snakes


in electric green grass. Elements of another painting include a black

dog, or wolf, streaming blood from its mouth, at the bottom right;

disembodied green gums with long, pointy teeth, above that; and a

central figure of a man with arms and legs out flung.

Hughes calls her work "visual drama in two dimensions," and

cites Grand Guignol, the French theater of shock and terror, as her

chief influence. Her images are purposefully flat, without


and the newer ones are literally illuminated by touches of neon color.

She believes that her art allows her to channel the impulsivity that

was caused by a neurological disability sustained some years ago into

spontaneous, immediate work. She says her disability has brought


into her life but liberation into her art. Fagan regards Hughes,


from River Vale, New Jersey, and now a Lawrenceville resident, as

a bone fide "outsider artist."

One-line ideas in a notebook are the basis of Thomas Kelly’s


Lacking his notebook and ignoring titles, viewers might enjoy coming

up with the story is behind each scene. For instance, the man with

a book in one hand, a bottle in the other. Behind him (and the book):

a few figures that look like family; behind him on the bottle side,

a bar scene with a woman sitting on a stool. Is this a morality tale?

In another picture, a woman sits on a chair in the middle of a


rag rug, while a man stands next to her, holding up a pendant of some

kind on a chain. Is she getting very sleepy? Is she in his power?

In a party scene, two women occupy two green couches, with a man


behind each one. But, look, is the man behind one woman eyeing the

other one? Is this "some enchanted evening" painted small?

Kelly, a Mercer graduate and Trenton resident, outlines

his figures that are usually found indoors. In one comparatively large

landscape with a surprising sky and three parallel-tilted bare trees,

a woman stands with two large dogs — one on a leash, the other

one free. Facing them, a man thrusts his arms out as if to fend off

the dogs, and a child seems to hide behind him. Despite the tranquil

look of the day, complete with a sailboat in the background, there

are "very uneasy dynamics," as Fagan puts it. At first,


work looks like simple narrative, but there are undercurrents.

Drawing on her own extensive network to build the season’s schedule,

Fagan was determined to uphold the college’s strong reputation for

art, both on the faculty and among graduates, and assure that the

great number of regional artists were well represented. Further,


the gallery serves as a teaching facility, she hoped to make the point

that "art is relevant for everybody," and often springs from

other than fine-art areas. Reviewing artists’ slides and resumes is

a regular part of her work load, as is visiting their studios to see

a body of work and, sometimes, to make preliminary choices for an


An exhibition showcasing work by the college’s art professors might

be expected, but Fagan has added a new twist to the concept: including

the work of "guest artists" who work in the same medium as

those featured. "Crossing Over" (October 10-November 2), the

gallery’s second exhibition, will illustrate this approach: faculty

members Anne Bobo and Yevgeniy Fiks will show art involving the


supplemented by the work of two invited artists. The computer is a

valid tool in creation of fine art, Fagan says.

"Absolute Music" (November 14-December 21) will pair


mixed media" work by Jordan Isip, a Brooklyn-based illustrator

whose work has appeared in the Village Voice and the New York Times,

and on CD covers, with sculpture by Czech artist Helena Lukasova,

an apprentice at the Johnson Atelier. Fagan says she "taps into

legends and world mythology remarkably well."

For "Inclusions," the gallery’s first exhibition of 2001


16-February 15), Fagan has booked Margaret K. Johnson, Princeton


and handmade paper artist, and abstract painter Pat Martin, of New

Hope. "They share this incredible elegance in their work,"

Fagan says of the two, although for one, "more is more," while

for the other, "less is more." The juried group show,


County Artists 2001," opens March 6 and runs until April 5, and

the "Visual Arts Student Show 2001" will be on view April 24-May


With that, it’s the end of another season in the gallery — though

not the end of Fagan’s efforts. As it has this year, summer allows

for clean up, fix up, paint up — not to mention mailing list


and updates, studio visits, season planning and fine-tuning. And as

happened earlier this month, summer’s end means mailing postcards

to herald the first exhibit of the new season. Between other gallery

chores, Fagan sandwiches in time to affix hundreds, make that


of mailing labels. She views this unglamourous but crucial task


as part — a big part, and one that won’t go away — of arts


Before moving to Mercer’s gallery, Fagan served for two years as


director at Artworks, the visual arts school of Trenton and Princeton,

and wrote freelance articles about the arts, including some for U.S.

1. Her affiliation with the New Jersey State Arts Council included

editing that organization’s newsletter. An occasional poet and jazz

singer, and a charter member of Trenton Avant-Garde (TAG), she


the spoken word stage at annual TAG fests, and she has produced


history month art shows in Trenton venues.

Mark your calendar for Wednesday, September 13: Another opening,



— Pat Summers

The Gallery at Mercer County Community College, located

on the campus at 1200 Old Trenton Road, 609-586-4800, ext. 3589. Open

Tuesday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Thursday evening

from 6 to 8. The reception for "Narrative Stance" is


September 13, 5 to 7:30 p.m.; and the gallery talk is Wednesday,


20, at 7 p.m. Both events are free and open to the public.

Top Of Page
Art in Town

Borders Books, Cafe Espresso, 601 Nassau Park,


An exhibition by Pennington artist Livy Glaubitz featuring watercolor

and pen-and-ink drawings, "Foreign Travels." A member of the

Garden State Watercolor Society, Glaubitz has shown throughout the

area. She is a third-grade teacher at Slackwood Elementary in


Artist’s reception will be Friday, September 29, at 7 p.m., for the

show that runs to October 1.

Historical Society of Princeton, Bainbridge House, 158

Nassau Street, 609-921-6748. "Old Traditions, New Beginnings,"

a major exhibition celebrating 250 years of Princeton Jewish history,

jointly presented and exhibited at the Jewish Center of Princeton.

This is the first-ever exhibit on the history of Princeton’s Jewish

community, coinciding with the Jewish Center’s 50th anniversary.


addressed include early arrivals, family life, social organizations,

work and business pursuits, religious traditions, and anti-Semitism.

Medical Center at Princeton, 253 Witherspoon Street,


Dining room exhibit of watercolors by Princeton artist Elizabeth


president of the Garden State Watercolor Society and trustee of the

Montgomery Cultural Center. Titled "Sojourn," she painted

the series of works last year on a journey through France’s Provence

region. Open daily from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., to September 14.

Fay Sciarra of Lawrenceville are featured in a Manhattan

gallery this month. Sciarra’s whimsical and cozy "homescapes"

(U.S. 1, April 14, 1999), are on view at the Frank J. Miele Gallery,

1086 Madison Avenue (at 82nd Street), New York, from September 6


October 1 (212-249-7250). Her work has been shown at the Stuart


Day School, Princeton, and Birds of a Feather, Kingston, as well as

the New Jersey State Museum Cafe. An artist’s reception is scheduled

at the gallery for Saturday, September 23, from 1 to 5 p.m.

Top Of Page
Art On Campus

Art Museum, Princeton University, 609-258-3788. Open


through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday 1 to 5 p.m. Free tours

of the collection are every Saturday at 2 p.m.

The permanent collection features a strong representation of Western

European paintings, old master prints, and original photographs.


of Chinese, Pre-Columbian Mayan, and African art are considered among

the museum’s most impressive. Not housed in the museum but part of

the collection is the John B. Putnam Jr. Memorial Collection of


outdoor sculpture, with works by such modern masters as Henry Moore,

Alexander Calder, Pablo Picasso, and George Segal located throughout

the campus.

Firestone Library, Princeton University, 609-258-3184.

"A Century for the Millennium: 100 Treasures from the Collections

of the Princeton University Library," on view in the main


gallery to November 5.

Lawrenceville School, Gruss Center of Visual Arts,


609-620-6026. "Past and Place," an exhibition of photographs

by Worth Stokes. Opening reception is Friday, September 15, from 7

to 8:30 p.m. Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; except Wednesday

and Saturday, 9 a.m. to noon. To September 29.

Top Of Page
Art by the River

ABC Gallery, Lambertville Public Library, 6 Lilly Street,

609-397-0275. "The Fruits of My Labor," an exhibition of oil

paintings and pastels by Fern Blumberg. Gallery hours are Monday &

Thursday, 1 to 9 p.m.; Tuesday & Wednesday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Friday

1 to 5 p.m.; and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. To September 29.

Artsbridge, Washington Crossing Visitors’ Center,


215-794-0970. The seventh Annual Members Exhibition features paintings

and sculpture by area artists, with prizes and awards. Gallery hours

are Tuesday to Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday from noon to

5 p.m., for the show that runs to September 27.

Bell’s Union Street Restaurant, 183 North Union,


609-397-2226. Joan Elliot’s large format still-life watercolors and

a series of 10 miniature prints, "The Giclee Bouquet," are

on view. Gem-like colors, intricate patterns, fruits, and flowers

fill Elliott’s images with joyful expression. The miniature ink-jet

prints on watercolor paper retain the detail and intensity of


at reproduction prices. Her work has been exhibited in the Berkshires,

Key West, Fairfield County, and New York. To September 30.

Coryell Gallery at the Porkyard, 8 Coryell Street,


609-397-0804. The gallery celebrates its 20th annual Summer Exhibition

featuring gallery artists Augustine, Baumgartner, Bross, Ceglia,


Ermentrout, Farnham, Lennox, Chesar, Miller, Rinninger, Ross, Sakson,

Scott, Silvia, Van Hook, Von Betzen, Dellenbaugh, Douris, Tsubota,

and Watts. Gallery is open Wednesday to Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

To September 30.

Goldsmiths Gallery, 26 North Union Street, Lambertville,

609-397-4590. Photographs by New Jersey multi-media artist Victor

Macarol whose work has been shown at the New Jersey State Museum,

Galerie Fink in Paris, and Galerie Mesmer in Basel, Switzerland. Open

Wednesday to Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. To September 21.

Nagy Gallery, 16 West Bridge Street, New Hope,


"Expressions in Clay," a shared show of ceramic sculpture

by Ivan Bratko and JoAnn Stratakos. Bratko won first place in the

annual New Hope Arts Commission Juried show with his work,


of a Potter," earlier this year. To September 30.

Top Of Page
Art in the Workplace

Gallery at Bristol-Myers Squibb, Route 206 and Province

Line Road, 609-252-6275. "Fragile Dependencies," a group


that takes a close look at delicate relationships in nature. Featured

artists are Joan Roth and Madelaine Shellaby of Princeton, Susan


of West Windsor, Simon Gaon, Lori Van Houten, Karon Moss, Michael

Zansky, and the late Rachel bas-Cohain. Gallery hours are Monday to

Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; weekends and holidays, 1 to 5 p.m. To



Johnson & Johnson World Headquarters Gallery, New


732-524-3698. An exhibition of bold drawings in colored marker by

Echo McCallister that mirrors the artist’s intense and complex life

experiences as a person with autism. Having spent a great portion

of his life in mental institutions, McCallister has earned a national

reputation as an emerging "Outsider Artist." His work is in

the collection of the National Art Exhibitions by the Mentally Ill.

Free by appointment to September 14.

Stark & Stark, 993 Lenox Drive, Building 2, Lawrenceville,

609-895-7307. "Shapes, Scenes, and Such," a display of artwork

by staff and family members of Stark & Stark. Also watercolors by

Trenton painter Marguerite Doernbach. Show is curated by Gary Snyder

Fine Art. Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. To September 9.

Top Of Page
Art In Trenton

Ellarslie, Trenton City Museum, Cadwalader Park,


"TAWA 2000," the annual members show juried show of the


Artists’ Workshop Association, selected by Kristen Accola, exhibition

director of the Hunterdon Museum of Art. Show features 50 works by

30 artists. Best in Show award goes to Bruce Rigby for "Wall


X." Also Juror’s Choice awards to Zenna Broomer and Arlene


honorable mention to David Lee Adams, Yevgeniy Fiks, Hetal Mistry,

and Dan Zimmerman. Open Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.;

Sunday 2 to 4 p.m., the show features artists’ talks every Sunday

at 2:30 p.m. To September 24.

Extension Gallery, 60 Ward Avenue, Mercerville,


"Of One Who Listens to the Stone," a group exhibition of stone

sculptures created by the staff and apprentices of the Johnson Atelier

Technical Institute. Opening reception is Saturday, September 9, from

4 to 6 p.m. Gallery hours are Monday to Thursday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.,

for the show that continues to October 5.

Grounds for Sculpture, 18 Fairgrounds Road, Hamilton,

609-586-0616. Summer Exhibition, to September 10. In the Museum and

Domestic Arts Building, "Washington Sculptors Group," a juried

exhibition of 60 recent sculptures. On the Grounds, "Dana


imaginative,mythical beasts in bronze from the New Jersey artist.

New Outdoors, sculptures by Red Grooms, G. Frederick Morante, Kenneth

Payne, and Larry Young.

Grounds for Sculpture recently evolved into a public charitable


the Public Art Foundation Inc., and is now supported by visitors’

admission fees, memberships, patrons, and foundations. The park and

galleries of the Domestic Arts Building are open Tuesday through


from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., year round; the Museum building is open from

10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Public tours are offered Saturday mornings at 11

a.m. Adult admission is $4 Tuesday through Thursday; $7 Friday and

Saturday; and $10 Sunday. Annual membership $55 individual; $45 for

seniors & students.

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

609-292-6464. "The Leah Phyfer Sloshberg Collection of Fine


to September 3. "The Art of Jack Delano," to September 24.

On extended view: "New Jersey Ceramics, Silver, Glass and


"Delaware Indians of New Jersey;" "Of Rock and Fire;"

"Washington Crossing the Delaware;" "New Jersey and the

Great Ice Age;" "Dinosaur Turnpike;" "A Convocation

of Eagles;" and "Amber: the Legendary Resin." Museum


Tuesday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.; Sunday noon to 5 p.m.

Rhinehart-Fischer Gallery, 46 West Lafayette, Trenton,

609-695-0061. First day for a month-long exhibition featuring


and decorative art spanning three centuries. Gallery hours are


to Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 5 p.m., for the show

that runs to September 30.

Top Of Page
Other Galleries

The Artful Deposit, 201 Farnsworth Avenue, Bordentown,

609-298-6970. Pastel works by Dressler Smith and portraiture by Nancy

Goodstein. Also represented, ceramics by the late James Colavita.

Gallery hours are Thursday through Saturday, 4 to 8 p.m., and by


Top Of Page
To the North

American Hungarian Foundation, 300 Somerset Street, New

Brunswick, 732-846-5777. "Then and Now: Recent Museum Acquisitions

of Art and Folk Art." To September 17. Donation $5. Museum hours

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

Quietude Garden Gallery, 24 Fern Road, East Brunswick,

732-257-4340. The contemporary sculpture gallery’s "New Artists,

New Ideas, New Season" show, featuring work by more than 100


in natural outdoor installations. Featured artists include Sarah


Charles Welles, and Liz Whitney Quisgard. Gallery hours are Friday

to Sunday, noon to 5 p.m., and by appointment.

Top Of Page
Other Museums

James A. Michener Art Museum, 138 South Pine Street,


215-340-9800. "John Goodyear: Thinking into Form, Works


a 50-year retrospective by the Lambertville-based conceptual artist,

curated by Henry Hose. Both painter and installation artist, Goodyear

taught at Rutgers from 1964 to 1997. The show highlights each period

of Goodyear’s career, and includes paintings, kinetic works, and


works from the "Heat Sculpture" series, "Death of


and "Earth Curve." To September 17.

Also an installation by Yardley sculptor Elizabeth Miller McCue


a life-size sculpture inspired by Monet’s famous "Haystacks"

series; to October 22. Also, "Sublime Servers: A Celebration of

Theatrical Possibilities at the Table," a cornucopia of expressive

ceramic sculpture and vessels by 30 artists, organized by the


Clayworks and curated by Gail M. Brown; to September 3.

Museum hours Tuesday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Saturday &


10 a.m. to 5 p.m. $5 adults; $1.50 students; children free. Website:

Previous Story Next Story

Corrections or additions?

This page is published by

— the web site for U.S. 1 Newspaper in Princeton, New Jersey.

Facebook Comments