With no less than a dozen art openings this week, we had to dedicate these pages to the impressive offerings of area galleries. Here’s just a few of the artists whose work will be unveiled.

Fifty years ago Edward Steichen mounted an historic exhibit, "Family of Man," at the Museum of Modern Art, known as the most inspiring photography exhibit ever assembled. In honor of the anniversary, the Gallery at Mercer County Community College in West Windsor (Old Trenton Road, 609-586-4800) is mounting "The Human Face," featuring the photography of Helen Stummer of Metuchen, Diane Levell of Doylestown, Pennsylvania, and the late Lou Draper, a professor of photography at the college.

"Each of these three photographers contributes a complex, compassionate, exquisitely photographed vision of what it is to be human in today’s world," says gallery director and curator Tricia Fagan. "Although their personal focuses may vary in content and approach, these artists share a passion and an eye for the difficulties, joys, small moments, and great dignities that comprise our collective human experience." The show opens Wednesday, November

16 and is on view through Wednesday, December 21.

The houses that shelter us is the focal point of "Shelter from the Storm," which features paintings, prints, and photography by Bucks County artists depicting houses and shelter in literal and conceptual ways. The show opens Wednesday, November 16, at Triumph Brewing Company in New Hope (400 Union Square, 215-862-8300), and is on view through Saturday, December 31.

"Myself, My Camera, My World," featuring the photography of homeless and in-transiton children from HomeFront, opens Wednesday, November 16, at the Gruss Center of Visual Arts at the Lawrenceville School (609-620-6026), on view through Saturday, December 10. In a camp held on the Lawrenceville campus last summer, the children were given cameras and mentored by professional photographer Bill Vandever.

Also at the Gruss Center is "Dan Eldon: Images of War Celebrations of Peace," on view through December 14. Eldon was a photojournalist and stringer for Reuters who covered civil war and famine in Somalia. He was killed at the age of 22. This traveling exhibit documents the drawings, paintings, and mixed media images that filled Eldon’s journals.

Born and raised in Kiev, Ukraine, Alla Pololsky, now a Philadelphia resident, began her formal training in Ukraine and continued at Moore College of Art and Design and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, where she earned an MFA in 1999. Her show, "The Paintings of Alla Pololsky," opens Wednesday, November 16, at the Princeton Jewish Center (435 Nassau Street, 609-921-0100). "I trace my love of psychological and narrative portraits to the Byzantine-style iconography that is so prominent in the ancient city of Kiev," she says. She paints portraits, landscapes, and cityscapes from her frequent travels to Paris, Switzerland, and other destinations abroad.

By applying paints, colored inks, and felt pens to photographs, artist Rhoda Kassof-Isaac finesses subject matter, light, color, cropping, and composition to produce works of fantasy and mystery, often using double exposures to express her ideas. "My approach to art and photography is best expressed in a quote from the writings of Vincent van Gogh: ‘Real artists paint things not as they are, in a dry, analytical way, but as they feel them…What I want to do most is to make of incorrectness, deviations, remodeling, or adjustments of reality, something that may be untrue but is at the same time more than than the truth.’" An exhibit of her "footographs" opens with a reception Friday, November 18, 6 to 9 p.m. at Gallery 14 in Hopewell (14 Mercer Street, 609-333-8511) and is on view through Sunday, December 18. A meet the photographers reception will be held Saturday, November 19, 1 to 3 p.m.

The other artist in this duo exhibit is Marilyn Canning, showcasing selenium-toned black and white prints. "This exhibit surveys the fertile desert of the ancient West, a land that haunts and inspires," says Canning. "The mosaics of cultures – Indian, Mexican, Cowboy, and Catholic – have left their collective legacy in the vastness and wonder of the land. With infinite patience, nature quietly erodes and reclaims that which man has abandoned – the derelict mining town, the empty churches, and lost Indian graveyards."

The E.M. Adams Gallery in New Hope (19 North Main Street, 215-862-5667) unveils an exhibit by award-winning photographer Jim LaSala on Friday, November 18. An opening reception will be held on Saturday, November 19, 6 to 9 p.m. The show is on view through Sunday, November 20.

The Firehouse Gallery in Bordentown (8 Walnut Street, 609-298-3742) is soon to become a full-fledged studio for Eric Gibbons, whose work continues to be shown in Paris, London, Los Angeles, New York, and other major cities. The gallery mounts its last show, aptly titled "The Last Hurrah," featuring the modern religious icons and church doorways of Christine Parson of Virginia’s Torpedo Factory as well as the photography of Daniel Schuette and Brad Evert. Some of Gibbons’ original figure paintings will also be on exhibit. The show opens Saturday, November 19, noon to 4 p.m, and is on view through Saturday, December 17.

A retrospective, "Henry Ryan MacGinnis: 1875-1962" showcases close to 80 paintings by the American impressionist opens at the Gratz Gallery in New Hope (30 West Bridge Street, 215-862-1750) with a reception on Saturday, November 19, 6 to 10 p.m. McGinnis, a Trenton resident beginning in 1906, focused on painting portraits and impressionist landscapes near the Delaware River and New Hope. The show is on view through Saturday, December 31.

By day he is a bankruptcy and real estate lawyer, on off hours he is a painter. The work of Princeton resident and Princeton graduate Rhinold Lamar Ponder will be on view for one day only, Sunday, November 20, 3 to 6 p.m., at Princeton University’s Carl A. Field Center (86 Olden Street). Titled "Between the Sacred and the Profane," the exhibit features explosively colorful abstract and semi-abstract action paintings on themes ranging from sports to religion. "Much of my work visually and spiritually is an exploration of mankind’s connection to the sacred powers, whether we find them in prayer, sporting events, or what some view as ordinary spaces," says Ponder.

The Coryell Gallery in Lambertville (8 Coryell Street, 609-397-0804) presents two artists for its annual holiday exhibition: Albert L. Bross Jr, who is best known for his oil landscapes and seascapes of Maine, and Vincent Ceglia, who uses earthy, dramatic acrylic washes applied like watercolor. An opening reception will be held Sunday, November 20, 3 to 6 p.m., and is on view through January 16.

"Books as Objects of Art" is now on view at Montgomery Center for the Arts in Skillman (124 Montgomery Road, 609-921-3272). The exhibit looks at the work of book artists as visual inventions, where the image is predominant over the text. The show runs through Friday, December 23.

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