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Published in U.S. 1 Newspaper on February 2, 2000. All rights
Casting a Spell at Peddie
At the Peddie School’s Mariboe Gallery, a national
juried group exhibition is being presented under the title "Art
and Math." But a close perusal of the single large room elegantly
hung with a dozen works by six selected artists, causes one to wonder
if "Art and Magic" might not be a more apt title. With one
or two bona fide mathematically-derived works, at least three artists
use images of numbers and computation to conjure the furtive,
anxious process of casting a mathematical spell — perhaps to
The show was devised and juried by the four-member Peddie visual arts
faculty: Kathy Robohm Watkins, Tim Trelease, Deirdre McGrail, and
Ken Weathersby, who also directs the gallery. Publishing a call for
entries under the title "Mathematical Operations as Method and
Subject for Art," Weathersby says more than 100 entries were
from which the six participants were selected. A juried show on a
similar theme was presented by Peddie in 1997, curated by Watkins.
Jeffrey Heyne, Boston; Brian Lytle, Hoboken; James Mai, Iowa; Carol
Myers, New York; John O’Connor, Westfield, Massachusetts; and Laurann
Szpak, Bradford, Massachusetts, are each represented by just two or
three works. Yet there is much to be learned about each in the useful
eight-page accompanying brochure of artists’ statements.
Weathersby’s guided tour of the carefully chosen show reveals a
of approaches. Now in his second year as gallery director, Weathersby
teaches painting, studio foundations, and digital graphics — among
other things. Born and raised in Mississippi, he earned his MFA at
the Cranbrook Academy in Detroit, and has worked at the Guggenheim
Museum in New York in conservation, and as editor of the artists’
magazine Hootenanny. His own painting ( his current work is inspired
by the concept of mazes as well as his close study of the art of
Jensen) is also related to the show’s theme.
The room is dominated by John O’Connor’s large (5-by-8-foot) drawing,
"Untitled Z," in oil stick, ink, and pencil. A lustrous series
of colored oval forms is surrounded by areas of dense computation,
number series, and diagrams, including erasures. Here diagrammatic
systems are presented in an earnest, but suspiciously manic way.
Brian Lytle of Hoboken calls his studio Fractal Lab, where he uses
tanks of water to explore fluid dynamics by phenomenological means.
"Rapture," the most striking of three elegant, graphic
works, features feathery dancing white forms on a black field. The
recognizable organic sources for these decorative patterns are
reminiscent of plant life, they are apparently the result of chemical
James Mai is an artist who does use structural and systematic
to create his color abstractions. In his accompanying notes, he
the evolution of purpose of the radiant and provocative "Cohabit
(Equal Areas)," a vertical group of six square grids in six hues
derived from the color circle. More striking, however, are the
implications of his house-like forms that trigger thoughts of homes,
neighborhoods, and communities.
Laurann Szpak’s "Untitled (Tally)," a pair of relief etchings
bound into a book, resembles a prisoner’s diary in its unrelenting
series of scratch marks. Jeffrey Heyne measures time as well as water
depth in a beautiful trio of gem-like images, built over photographs
of Hoover dam, lusciously glazed and embellished with ruby-red
And Carol Myers, in her lovely, multi-layered mixed media "The
Heart is a Mathematician," again includes numerals and number
series to suggest the possibility of getting your way through math.
— Nicole Plett
Hightstown, 609-490-7550. To February 18. Open Monday, Tuesday,
Friday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Storybook illustrations by Russian-born artist Gennady Spirin. Open
by appointment during school hours. To February 13.
Spirin was born in the small town of Orehknov-Zuyevo, near Moscow,
and received his art training at the Surtkov School of Fine Arts,
the Academy of the Arts in Moscow, and the Stroganov Institute. His
style combines traditional Russian techniques with the great
of the Renaissance.
"International Print Show" with collographs by Brenda Hartill,
wood engravings by Peter Lazarov, and etchings by Max Werner. Schmitz.
Tuesday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. To February 26.
Art and Technology in the 21st Century: Leaders of Innovation,"
featuring artists George Cramer, Susumu Endo, and Roman Verostko.
To February 26. Gallery hours are Tuesday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to
5 p.m. Website at www.wmgallery.com.
Contemporary Art by African-American Artists," to March 5. Also
"Transfer: Large Format Prints of the 1960s and 1970s,"
to April 2. The museum is open Tuesday 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.
"Picture Trenton," a major exhibition of art in all media
with views of Trenton as the subject, co-sponsored with Artsbridge,
Artworks, and TAWA. To February 20. Museum hours are Tuesday through
Saturday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Sunday 2 to 4 p.m.
609-586-0616. Fall-Winter Exhibition. In the Museum and Domestic Arts
Building, "Beverly Pepper," one-artist show. On the mezzanine,
a thematic photography show, "Focus on Sculpture." Shows
to April 16. Gallery hours are Thursday through Saturday, 10 a.m.
to 4 p.m., and by appointment.
New additions to the 22-acre landscaped sculpture park include works
by Michele Oka Doner, David Hostetler, J. Seward Johnson Jr.,
Leiro, John Martini, and Joseph Menna.
609-292-6464. "Unseen Treasures: Imperial Russia and the New
an exhibit of historic treasures of the Russian empire. The dazzling
collection of 300 art objects and artifacts from Russian’s famed State
Historical Museum and State Archive is displayed in five historical
settings. Show remains on view through April 16. Admission $10 adults;
$8.50 seniors and students; $6 children. Advance ticket purchase at
800-766-6048 or online at http://www.tickets.com. Tuesday
to Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The exhibition takes the visitor on a unique journey beginning with
the formation of the Russian American Company in 1799 and spanning
a period of 200 years and 6,000 miles.
609-695-0061. "Art from 19th Century to the Present," plus
antiques and interior design. Gallery hours are Wednesday to Saturday,
10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 5 p.m.
609-895-7307. "Looking at the World: Work by Barry Snyder and
William H. Selesnick." To March 10. Exhibit is open Monday to
Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Street, New Brunswick, 732-846-5777. "The Hungarian Spark in
an exhibit highlighting Hungarian contributions to the arts, sciences,
humanities, commerce, religious and civic life in America. Extended
to February 27. Museum hours are Tuesday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4
p.m.; Sunday, 1 to 4 p.m. $3 donation. Tuesday to Saturday, 11 a.m.
to 4 p.m.; Sunday, 1 to 4 p.m. $3 donation.
Avenue, New Brunswick, 732-932-2222, ext. 838. "Printed
an exhibit of drawings and prints by Juan Sanchez, a Latino artist
from Puerto Rico, and his new work "Once We Were Warriors."
Weekdays 10 a.m. to 4 p.m..
Brunswick, 732-932-7237. "The Enduring Figure, 1890s to 1970s:
Sixteen Sculptures from the National Association of Women
Show continues to March 12.
609-799-6706. "Portraits in Other Objects" by Eric Montoya,
an artist who exhibits in Los Angeles and New York. The show features
oil portraits whose forms are comprised of other narrative elements.
Tuesday to Thursday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Friday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.;
Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m
Featuring color and black-and-white photographs by Harry Rubel who
has been making photographs for 45 years. Also, works by area artists
Patrice Sprovieri, Wayne Mathisen, Annelies van Dommelen, and Susan
Setteducato. Also exhibiting Hsu Dan, Tom Chesar, Larry Chestnut,
Calvin Hart, Clem Fiori, Leslie Neumeyer, Leyla Spencer, Janet Landau,
Jacob Landau, Ellyn Gerberding, and Marge Levine. Hours are Monday
through Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Thursday to 9 p.m.; and Saturday,
9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Road, 609-921-3272. "Out of the Blue," an exhibition of new
paintings by the physically challenged artists working with Artistic
Realization Technologies, the brainchild of artist Tim Lefens. To
February 26. Gallery hours are Tuesdays to Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 3
"Through the Eye of a Needle: The Lap Quilts of Mo Fleming."
In her quilting, Fleming, former chair of Plainsboro’s Human Relations
Committee, continues a family tradition that spans generations. To
Fleming revitalizes the folk art of rag quilting by creating unique
mosaics in fabric fragments. Her work incorporations beads, buttons,
emblems, ribbons, and found objects to express her ideas and
Working with a five-foot-square form, her quilts reflect a deep pride
in African American culture. Her "Black Women Author’s Quilt"
features 18 portraits including Toni Morrison, Iyanla Vanzant, and
Bebe Moore Campbell.
"Grinding the Wind," an exhibition of kinetic sculpture of
Philadelphia artist Alison Kuby Netz, curated by James Dickinson,
Rider professor of sociology. Gallery hours are Monday to Thursday,
2 to 8 p.m.; Friday to Sunday, 2 to 5 p.m. To March 4.
Using casts of real people, Kuby Netz cuts and welds sheet steel to
create life-size figures. These figures are activated by electric
motors, cams, gears, and chains that cause them to crawl, roll,
swing, and hit in repetitive, threatening and humorous ways.
Born in Philadelphia, Kuby Netz received her BA in art from Hampshire
College and an MFA in sculpture from the School of the Art Institute
of Chicago. She has worked in Boston, New York, and Philadelphia
bicycles and building theater sets.
215-340-9800. "The Jazz Age in Paris, 1914 to 1940," a
exhibit from the Smithsonian that describes the heady expatriate scene
in Paris between the wars. To April 2. Also, "Let Children Be
Children: Lewis Hine’s Crusade Against Child Labor," an exhibition
of historic photographs from the early 20th century, to February 27.
Website: http://www.michenerartmuseum.org. Museum
hours Tuesday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Saturday & Sunday,
10 a.m. to 5 p.m. $5 adults; $1.50 students; children free.
Also on view, an exhibition of figurative outdoor sculpture by
artist Barry Johnston, to March 5; and "Recent Gifts: 19th and
20th-Century Photographs from Alexander Novak and Family," to
609-397-2226. Pastel landscapes by Julia Akers Gribbin, to January
Lambertville, 609-397-3939. "Prayer Flags: Images of Bhutan,
and Bali" by Stockton photographer Ken Wong. The show follows
the spiritual landscapes of Asia, from the lofty Himalayas to the
rain forests of Bali. To February 14. Gallery hours are Friday and
Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 4 p.m.
Wong used two old cameras for this pictorial series: a 2-1/4-inch
Rollei and a 4×5 view camera. His sepia-toned black-and-white prints
document a heritage that is fast disappearing as the modern world
encroaches on these remote regions.
609-397-2300. A show of Charles Fazzino’s whimsical, three-dimensional
paper constructions on big subjects that include New York,
sports, and the law. To February 28. Open Wednesday through Sunday,
noon to 5 p.m.
Recent work by James Feehan is featured at the gallery that represents
100 area artists. Gallery hours Monday to Wednesday, noon to 5 p.m.;
Thursday & Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Friday & Saturday, 11 a.m.
to 7 p.m. To February 15.
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