Art in Town

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To the North

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This article by Pat Summers was published in U.S. 1 Newspaper on July 7,

1999. All rights reserved.

Organized Artists? At TAWA

Like anything else that is 20 years old, TAWA —

the Trenton Artists’ Workshop Association — has had its ups and

downs. That’s a wide-angle view of the organization that now boasts

some 150 regional artist members and a summer series of exhibitions

that took some doing. The close-up view, with a zoom to a TAWA member

and her own invitational show — can by definition be more, well,

focused. To all appearances though, TAWA (rhymes with "Wawa")

has got its second wind. And it seems like a strong one.

Founded in 1979 as a vehicle for networking among area artists, the

organization made its name with periodic exhibitions and a number

of significant related projects. These include a Soviet/TAWA Exchange

of 1989, and a group photography project that culminated in the book,

"Trenton Takes: 24 Hours in the City." More recently, around

the time veteran leaders turned over the reins of responsibility to

a new generation of TAWA members, the organization languished. Now

with the opening on Saturday, July 10, of the second of three TAWA

invitational shows at Ellarslie, the Trenton City Museum, and a major

planning session coming up next month for both the organization’s

20th anniversary and the millennium, TAWA seems to be "on the

road again."

No small undertaking, the TAWA invitationals illustrate how the organization

is rebounding. To pull off three juried exhibitions in a row, each

involving five artists, with each artist allocated their own room

to fill with art work, is a feat. It’s even more notable when those

pulling off the venture are part of a whole new governing crew that

first said, "We’re supposed to do WHAT?!" — then reinvented

the process that, for the second year, has made the summer invitationals

(15 solo shows, for all practical purposes) possible. And they did

such a good job that this year’s professional juror still lauds the

exhibition committee.

"`Artists’ organization’ is kind of an oxymoron," says Brian

H. Peterson, senior curator at Doylestown’s James A. Michener Art

Museum, and juror of the TAWA invitationals. But he describes the

TAWA representatives he dealt with as a "professional group with

lots of variety and very efficient."

Wryly describing interactions with most artists as "high maintenance

relationships," Peterson says TAWA’s exhibition team, coordinator

Paul Mordetsky with Elizabeth McCue, made the process comparatively

easy. Their agreement to stiffen entry requirements — calling

for a full complement of slides, an artist’s statement, and a resume

— attracted the 21 artists of whom 15 were selected. After reviewing

all the slides to get to know entrants’ work, Peterson ultimately

made his choices, then worked with Mordetsky and McCue on alternative

ways to group the three artistic quintets.

Finally, considering medium and room configuration,

Mordetsky matched artists with rooms at Ellarslie, where the first

floor allows three artists to show their work, while two more share

the second floor with the museum’s permanent collection.

The second exhibition of the 1999 TAWA Invitationals runs to August

10, with an opening reception Saturday, July 10, from 6 to 8 p.m.

As the first show also did, this exhibit showcases a variety of mediums

by the five participants: Hope Carter’s installations that explore

the effects of environmental space; Michael C. Lees’ figurative paintings,

with religious and philosophical themes; John A. MacCalus’s explorations

of the human figure as landscape; Michelle Soslau’s prints; and Idaherma

Williams’s "Dupcheu woodcut series."

A series of coincidences a few years ago caused Idaherma Williams

to make a trip that still resonates in her home, her conversation,

her clothes, her art. She bought a book that introduced her to the

culture of the Haida, a native people of northwestern Canada, and

some kind of chord was struck. When a bequest came her way, and she

learned about a trip to that very place, she seized the opportunity

to visit the people whose art had fascinated her from a distance.

After three weeks getting to know the Haida; after their chief presented

her with a round, silver pin showing a hummingbird that she wears

today as a pendant; and after the name "Dupcheu," or "little

woman" was bestowed on her, the five-foot-tall artist began what

she calls her Dupcheu series, which she will show at Ellarslie.

"Sometimes things happen and you go with the flow. If you don’t,

you stop yourself from being creative," she says.

Let the record show, and the pronunciation too, that Williams’ first

name is pronounced "E-daherma," as if the first vowel were

a long "e." Her art is not confined to wood block prints,

nor is her exhibition space limited to Ellarslie. In her own words,

she produces "a wide range of work:" colorful abstract oils

and watercolors, as well as prints. She often works in series; for

instance, two of her prints from a transportation series are part

of the Printmaking Council’s 25th anniversary show at the Newark Museum.

A black and white "Dragon flowers" print from her "East-West"

series merited honorable mention at the Artsbridge juried exhibition

at Prallsville Mills, in Stockton. A show of her illuminated miniature

watercolors at Taste Buds in New Hope opens with a reception Saturday,

July 10, from 4 to 6 p.m. and continues through August. And Williams’

work is also included in a current show by the International Woodblock

Society in Kyoto, Japan.

For the TAWA show, Williams’s Dupcheu prints are on view in a first-floor

room at Ellarslie. Described by the artist as distillations or reinterpretations

of her experience with the Haida people, her works are either boldly

black and white, or colored, generously sized, and printed on luxuriant

hand-made (not by her) paper. To what might be predictable motifs

— totem poles, ravens, eagles, suns — Williams brings an incisive

style that one guesses the Haida themselves would find appealing.

Williams has always made art. She earned her BFA from the Philadelphia

College of Art, her MFA from the University of Pennsylvania, and also

studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. "I tried everything,

but nothing appealed to me but wood," she says. She uses any kind

of wood, as long as it is soft enough to work. She displays her woodworking

tools with the same pride she evidences in describing how important

it was for her to become skilled at printing her own images, rather

than counting on someone else to do it. Although she owns an old press,

she prefers a baren — a flat, round hand-tool used to rub the

back of the printing sheet on which a single impression will be made

— to produce limited-edition prints. Showing a visitor some recent

ones, she agrees that the sensory pleasure she takes in them includes

the very smell of ink and paper. She may start with sketches, or not,

explaining, "I’m more intuitive and emotional than mechanical."

Born in the South Bronx, New York, Williams moved as a child to Philadelphia

with her parents — her mother, a bookkeeper; her father, a carpenter

who also sold restaurant equipment. She remembers keeping her father

company on his buying and selling forays, drawing all the way. Her

brother, born when she was about 10, is an engineer. Now, with her

husband, David, a botany teacher, she lives in the Princeton area.

Their adult son, Evan, lives in Stockton.

Williams maintains affiliations with a broad array of printmaking

associations, currently serving on the board of directors of the Society

of American Graphic Artists (SAGA), in New York, and others. She has

been a TAWA member for 15 years, she says. Eager to share her impressions

of the Haida people, Williams offers a slide show to those who want

to know more, and she will discuss the Dupcheu woodblocks in a gallery

talk at Ellarslie on Sunday, July 11, at 2 p.m.

"Don’t forget that second wind." A reanimated TAWA is coming

around again, gusting through sometimes-musty Ellarslie. Good for

both of them.

— Pat Summers

TAWA Invitational, Ellarslie, Trenton City Museum,

Cadwalader Park, 609-989-3632. Opening reception for a TAWA members’

juried group show featuring Hope Carter, Michael C. Lees, John MacCalus,

Michelle Soslau, and Idaherma Williams. Saturday, July 10, 6 to

8 p.m.

Museum hours are Tuesday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Sunday,

2 to 4 p.m., for the show that runs to August 1. TAWA website is at

www.ilovelbi.com/tawa.

Gallery talk by Idaherma Williams in conjunction with the TAWA

members’ juried group show, Sunday, July 11, 2 p.m. Gallery

talk by Hope Carter and Michelle Soslau, Sunday, July 18, 2 p.m.

Gallery talk by Michael C. Lees, Sunday, July 25, 2 p.m. Gallery

talk by John MacCalus, Sunday, August 1, 2 p.m.

Idaherma Williams, Tastebuds Cafe, 49 West Ferry

Street, New Hope, 215-862-9722. Opening reception for a show of miniature

illuminated watercolors. Show continues to August 31. Free. Saturday,

July 10, 4 to 6 p.m..

TAWA Invitational, Ellarslie, Trenton City Museum,

Cadwalader Park, 609-989-3632. Opening reception for the third TAWA

members’ juried group show featuring Judy Fowler, Mary Person Hrbacek,

Ruth Jourjine, Tomi Urayama, and Nancy Zamboni, is Saturday, August

7, 6 to 8 p.m.

Top Of Page
Art in Town

Marsha Child Contemporary, 220 Alexander Street, 609-497-7330.

"Heart of the Matter: New Abstraction," an exhibition of photographs

by Ray Anderson, sculpture by Lee Tribe, and paintings by Atanas Zgalevski,

Natalia Zaloznaya, and Lucien Dulfan. To July 31. Gallery hours are

Wednesday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and by appointment.

DeLann Gallery, Princeton Meadows Shopping Center, Plainsboro,

609-799-6706. "May Bender," the East Brunswick artist’s first

retrospective show, covering the years 1945 to the present. A lifetime

painter, trained as the Art Students League, Bender has produced more

than 350 paintings, working in figurative, geometric, and abstract

expressionist genres. Show features oils on canvas and works on paper.

To August 14. Gallery hours are 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.

Gratella Gallery at Doral Forrestal, 100 College Road

East, 609-452-7800. "Dual Perceptions," a show of paintings

by Joy H. Barth. To July 26. This solo exhibition includes Barth’s

recent works which combine painting, drawing, and printmaking. "Using

the different media, I hope to invent a language that is nature-based,"

says Barth. "The art speaks of the indefinable, that illusive

moment, the passage of wind, or the cadence of rain."

Kwela Crafts, 46 Main Street, Kingston, 609-279-2188.

"Funk-Tional Art," a mini-exhibit of African animal lamps

by Cape Town artists Michael Methven and Mwande Mthini. Show runs

through July 31. Gallery hours are Monday to Saturday, 10 a.m. to

5 p.m.; Thursday, noon to 8 p.m.

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

In the dining room, an exhibit of works by the Haitian-born oils artist

Etzer Desir. To July 15. At the Merwick Unit, paintings by Alice Warshaw,

to September 7. Formerly of Roosevelt, and now residing in Lawrenceville,

Warshaw traces her love of figure painting to studies with Elizabeth

Lombardi at the Arts Council of Princeton. She studied art at the

College of New Jersey, MCCC, and Rider, earning her state certificate

to teach art while working as a porcelain figurine decorator and inspector

with Ispanky Porcelains. Gallery hours are 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily.

Pringle International Art, 8 Chambers Street, 609-921-9292.

"From Here to There," an exhibition of contemporary landscapes

by Brenda Hartill of New Zealand, Joe McIntyre of Scotland, English

artist Simon Palmer, and the Belgium-born Max Werner. To July 10.

Gallery hours are Tuesday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Small World Coffee, 14 Witherspoon Street, 609-924-4377.

"Bill, Hank & Al: Landscapes," an exhibition of paintings

by William Wolfe, architect, and Henry Arnold and Alan Goodheart,

landscape architects, professional colleagues who share a passion

for painting. To August 2.

Says Al Goodheart: "These landscape paintings are real places

reinvented on location with acrylic colors. The places themselves

are important to me, but the paintings are about something special

that happens `out there.’" Adds Bill Wolfe, who has been carrying

a sketchbook for 10 years: "Whereas photography previously distracted

me, drawing intensified my vision. The natural settings themselves

compelled me to paint, as lines could not suffice. I paint to celebrate

the light, colors, and rhythms of the natural world, and in particular

the various moods of water."

Williams Gallery, 8 Chambers Street, 609-921-1142. First day

for "Urban Landscapes," recent works by Uri Dotan, Robert

Linton Ewens, Joan Hierholzer, and David Scott Leibowitz. An interpretation

of the city, night and day, by four artists employing both traditional

and digital mediums to create their images. To July 10. Gallery hours

are Tuesday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Top Of Page
Art On Campus

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

from the Collection of Dr. M. Jay Goodkind ’49," a show of 39

works of landscape and nature photography collected since 1964, part

of the collector’s promised bequest to the museum. The show includes

Ansel Adams’ "Aspens, New Mexico," 1958, the first work acquired

by Goodkind in 1964, which, together with eight additional Adams photographs,

set the tone of the collection. To September 5.

The Goodkind collection includes images by Edward Weston, Brett Weston,

Bruce Barnbaum, Paul Caponigro, William Clift, Robert Dawson, Dianne

Kornberg, and George Tice, among others. One area of concentration

is the sand dunes of Oceano and Death Valley, California, with works

in the collection by a variety of different artists.

Also "From Ritual Simplicity to Imperial Splendor: Chinese Ceramics

from the Collection of Nelson Chang ’74," to September 26; "Chinese

Painting and Calligraphy: In Memory of John B. Elliott," to September

30.

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

In the Milberg Gallery, "Artifacts: The Biographical Object in

the Princeton University Library Collections," to September 15.

Gallery hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays; noon to 5 p.m. on weekends.

Top Of Page
Art by the River

Bell’s Restaurant, 183 North Union, Lambertville, 609-397-2226.

Watercolor and mixed-media prints and handpainted ceramics by Maria

Madonna Davidoff, to July 31.

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

A shared exhibition of wood engravings by Anne Steele Marsh and watercolors

by Charles R. Ross. To July 31.

Goldsmiths Gallery, 26 North Union Street, Lambertville,

609-397-4590. "Silver Prints," an exhibition of photographs

by New Jersey multi-media artist Victor Macarol, to September 30.

"Like a poet whose successful verse relies on descriptive imagery

and creative economy of words, Macarol composes his images with an

exact arrangement of chosen elements," says curator Cynthia Reed.

Gallery hours are Wednesday to Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Howard Mann Art Center, 45 North Main Street, Lambertville,

609-397-2300. Joan Miro, signed and authenticated color lithographs,

1939 to 1972, by one of the 20th-century masters. Through July 25.

Nagy Gallery, 20-B South Main Street, New Hope, 215-862-8242.

A landscape painting show by four of Poland’s well-known artists featuring

Jerzy Gnatowski, Jansuz Olszewski, Stanislaw Jan Lazorek, and Anna

Olszewska. The recently opened gallery features Delaware Valley artists

in a variety of creative media including painting, sculpture, photography,

woodworking, blown glass, and stained glass.

Top Of Page
Art In Trenton

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

of Knowing: Six Points of Abstraction," an exhibition of non-representational

work by New Jersey artists including Jack Harris, Susan Hockaday,

Micheal Madigan, Pat Martin, Mary Ann Miller, and Ann Starkey, curated

by Micheal Madigan, runs through August 15. Artists’ reception is

Friday, July 16. Gallery hours are Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m.

to 4 p.m.; Sunday 1 to 4 p.m.

Capital Health System, 446 Bellevue Avenue, Trenton, 609-394-4095.

In the lobby gallery, an exhibition of flower paintings in watercolor

by area artists Robert Raphael, Howard Siskowitz, and Yvonne Skaggs.

To July 23. The lobby gallery is always open.

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

"TAWA Invitational," a series of juried member group shows,

selected by Brian H. Peterson of the Michener Museum in Doylestown.

Museum hours are Tuesday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Sunday, 2

to 4 p.m. Closed Mondays. TAWA website is at www.ilovelbi.com/tawa.

Extension Gallery, 60 Ward Avenue, Mercerville, 609-890-7777.

An exhibition of cast bronze and iron sculpture by Colleen O’Donnell.

Artist’s reception is Saturday, July 24, from 5 to 7 p.m., for the

show that runs to August 5.

Grounds for Sculpture, 18 Fairgrounds Road, Hamilton,

609-586-0616. Gallery hours are Friday through Sunday, 10 a.m. to

4 p.m. at the 22-acre landscaped sculpture park is on the former state

fairgrounds site, with indoor exhibitions in the glass-walled, 10,000

square foot museum, and the newly-renovated Domestic Arts Building.

B>n

New Jersey State Museum, 205 West State Street, Trenton, 609-292-6464.

"New Jersey Arts Annual" featuring Emma Amos, Miriam Beerman,

Wendell Brooks, Marguerite Doernbach, Nancy Lee Kern, Barbara Klein,

Bill Leech, Mel Leipzig, Bob Mahon, George Segal, Debra Weier, and

others. Curators are Alison Weld and Margaret O’Reilly. To September

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

noon to 5 p.m.

Also "Apollo 11 Remembered," an exhibit of commemorative items,

to January 2; "Sunstruck!" an exhibit that explores the cultural

myths, music, literature, archaeological artifacts, and astronomy

of Earth’s nearest star, to March 12. On extended view: "Dinosaur

Turnpike: Treks through New Jersey’s Piedmont"; "Amber: The

Legendary Resin"; "The Moon: Fact & Fiction."

Top Of Page
Art in the Workplace

Johnson & Johnson World Headquarters Gallery, New Brunswick,

732-524-3698. "Joseph Csatari Retrospective," an exhibition

by the South River artist known as "heir to Norman Rockwell"

runs to August 5. The show includes portraits, watercolors, book cover

art, and commercial illustration. Free by appointment.

Also "About Energy" by Patrick Schiavino, a self-taught painter

and mixed-media artist who believes that everything we know consists

of energy. In the New Jersey Artists Series. To July 12.

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

609-895-7307. "Contemporary Landscapes" curated by Gary Snyder

of Snyder Fine Art in New York. Featured artists are Laura E. Chenicek,

Tim Daly, Frank Ippolito, Robert Kogge, Adolf Konrad, Valerie Larko,

and Nancy Silvia. To July 16. Exhibit is open Monday to Friday, 9

a.m. to 5 p.m.

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Other Galleries

Montgomery Cultural Center, 1860 House, 124 Montgomery

Road, 609-921-3272. "Tour de France Exhibit" by watercolorists

Ellen Faber, Nancy Jorgenson, Beverly Nickel, and Gail Robertson.

To July 31. Hours are Tuesdays through Sundays, 9:30 a.m. to 3:30

p.m. and Saturdays 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Morpeth Gallery, 18 North Main Street, Pennington, 609-737-9313.

Group show of landscape and still life in oils by Stephen Kennedy,

Christine Lafuente, and David Shevlino. To July 17. Gallery hours

are Tuesday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Christine Lafuente paints exclusively from life and is an instructor

and artist-in-resident at the Fleisher Art Memorial in Philadelphia.

"I spend so much time looking in nature for what I paint: images

in life that satisfy an internal esthetic vision I have," she

says. Shevlino, a painter of plein air landscapes, won a regional

NEA fellowship in painting. Kennedy is a graduate of the National

Academy of Design who apprenticed with portraitist Nelson Shanks.

Printmaking Council of New Jersey, 440 River Road, Somerville,

908-725-2110. "Artful Pastiche: Highlighting New Jersey College

Artists," a juried exhibition of works by 34 student artists.

In the Library Gallery: "Judy Lyons Schneider: Transformed Transfers."

Both shows continue to July 15.

Top Of Page
To the North

Museum of the American Hungarian Foundation, 300 Somerset

Street, New Brunswick, 732-846-5777. "The Hungarian Spark in America,"

an exhibition highlighting Hungarian contributions to the arts, sciences,

humanities, commerce, religious and civic life in America. To January

31, 2000. Museum hours are Tuesday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.;

Sunday, 1 to 4 p.m. $3 donation.

Quietude Garden Gallery, 24 Fern Road, East Brunswick,

732-257-4340. Contemporary sculpture by 110 artists in natural outdoor

installations. The outdoor venue remains open through October. Hours

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

Rutgers’ Mason Gross School of the Arts, 33 Livingston

Avenue, New Brunswick, 732-932-2222, extension 838. "Veiled Time:

Contemporary Artists and the Holocaust," curated by Judith Brodsky,

featuring works by Aharon Gluska, Melissa Gould, David Levinthal,

Zbigniew Libera, Diane Neumaier, Gabrielle Roassmer, Lubo Stacho,

and Murray Zimiles. To July 31.


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