‘Sharing an Obsession for Collecting’ Exhibit, Sale, Panel Discussion at Pierro Gallery

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The following is from the Pierro Gallery:

Sharing an Obsession for Collecting
Exhibition, Sale and Collector to Collector Panel Discussion Features Art Work From Local Collections September 17- Saturday, October 17 2015
Pierro Gallery of South Orange ________________________________________
Sharing an Obsession: Collector to Collector Panel Discussion
Thursday October 1, 2015, 7-9pm ________________________________________

Sharing an Obsession for Collecting is a curated exhibition and sale of works from 12 local private art collectors. The exhibition is showing at the Pierro Gallery in South Orange, New Jersey, Thursday September 17- Saturday, October 17 and includes a free public program, Sharing an Obsession: Collector to Collector panel discussion, which will take place on Thursday, October 1, 2015, 7-9pm

Exhibition curators, Susan Napack, Susan Evans Grove, Sylvia Taylor Photographed by Luis Alves

Exhibition curators, Susan Napack, Susan Evans Grove, Sylvia Taylor
Photographed by Luis Alves

Co-curators Susan Napack, Susan Evans Grove, and Sylvia Taylor came to the idea of a collector’s show organically, hoping to explore the many ways objects bring us joy and to illustrate how a collector’s vision evolves over time. A goal of the exhibition is to inspire a love of collecting in new collectors and provide an opportunity for current collectors to sell some of their work in a gallery setting. A portion of all sales will go towards expanding public art programming in the community.

Many of the works in the show come from artists collections and reflect their interests in contemporary art multiples like prints and photographs or smaller original pieces that are often more affordable for beginning collectors. Prices range from $75 for one of a kind sculpture by local artist Fran Willner contributed by Gallery 1978, to less than $4,000 for a set of three Skateboard Decks by well know American contemporary artist George Condo. Philippe Halsman is represented by three black and white Marilyn Monroe prints. Also included are two sculptures and two beautiful rusted iron drawings by artist Leah Jacobson contributed by two separate collectors. Other offerings include vintage paintings by American women artists from the 1920’s through the 1970’s, original works on paper by Israeli artists from the 1960’s and some very fun and cheerful paintings of bicycles by Charlie Cook, the father of one of the collectors.


Sharing an Obsession: Collector to Collector Panel Discussion

Thursday October 1, 2015, 7-9pm
Pierro Gallery of South Orange ________________________________________

Why do we do it? How do we manage it? How does it grow and change over time? Two collectors, an appraiser, a consultant and an accountant talk about the ins and outs of sharing an obsession with collecting. Judy Targan, Kathy Nye, Ryan Curran and Raleigh Ceasar are moderated by Sylvia Taylor.

Sharing an Obsession: Collector to Collector panel discussion presents the perspectives of a seasoned collector and a collector just beginning, and reveals what happens in between. Judy Targen, a South Orange resident and a seasoned collector with an extensive and cohesive collection of contemporary art, beautifully displayed in her home. Judy lives with her collection, surrounding herself with the artwork, remembering the experiences and the stories that make each piece even more personal. Judy is one of the top collectors in the community.

Judy Targen with Terry Willner-Tainow and Jon S. Tainow Photographed by Susan Napack

Judy Targen with Terry Willner-Tainow and Jon S. Tainow
Photographed by Susan Napack

Kathy Nye and her husband, John, own Nye & Company, a unique, regional auction house that appraises and sells quality antiques, heirlooms and collections. Living in South Orange, Kathy is very involved in the community. She is on the Advisory Board of the Lenny Pierro Memorial Art Foundation, a major supporter of the Tony Smith Sculpture Project and is actively involved in the educational aspects of the organization. Kathy will speak on the subject of appraising and selling artwork that is no longer relevant in one’s collection.

Ryan Curran of Curran LLP, a full service CPA firm servicing the tristate region, takes pride in being truly committed to his clients’ financial well-being and success, and seeks to add value in every aspect of his relationship with his clients. Ryan will give an overview of the tax issues related to the sale of art.

Raleigh Ceasar, a South Orange resident, was one of the founders of the Dancing Goat in SO and in charge of their exhibitions until the time of their closing. With a background as an art handler for major art collections, most notably Louise Bourgeois, Raleigh is an art consultant, curates exhibitions, and is developing his own collection.

Not on the panel, but participating in the exhibition by volunteering her services, Marilyn Hayden has made herself available for appraising the artwork submitted by the collectors for the Sharing an Obsession exhibition. Marilyn, a resident of South Orange, has been involved with the art community for many years. She is on the Advisory Board Lenny Pierro Memorial Art Foundation.


About the Collectors

The collector’s personal stories are as engaging as the art they collect. Raleigh Ceasar, is a long time South Orange resident and active participant in the local arts community. He was one of the founders of the well-loved Dancing Goat Cafe in South Orange and was the curator and director of their art exhibition program until the time of their closing. He has worked for many years as an art handler for major art collections, including, most notably, the work of Louise Bourgeois. Raleigh is an art consultant, exhibition curator, and is developing his own art collection.

Dean Harte resides in Hawthorne, NJ, and started collecting art in his early 20s. Happening into a bicycle shop in Spring Lake, NJ, in the early 1970s, Dean was drawn to an oil painting of a desert island. He learned it was painted by a woman who was paralyzed from waist down from a bicycle accident. Enamored with the imagery which resonated with his own imagination, he purchased the painting. In 1977, Dean discovered his first piece of Stickley furniture at a yard sale, beginning a lifelong interest in the American Arts and Crafts movement. Along with acquiring an extensive Arts and Crafts furniture collection, he collected Arts & Crafts pottery which were made primarily made by women. From his interest in and research on the Arts and Crafts movement, Dean began noticing vintage artwork. He purchased some affordable, small watercolors, and by coincidence, they were painted by women artists. He developed an interest in well executed artwork by women who were either siblings or wives of well- known artists and unable to break into the art gallery scene which was dominated by male artists. Dean has refined his collection over the years of women artists who painted from the 1940s WPA period through the 1960s.

Laura Lou Levy is an artist, a longtime resident of Maplewood, NJ, and an active member of the local art community. She has an MFA in painting from Pratt Institute and has worked as an illustrator at The Wall Street Journal for many years. Laura started collecting art early on by trading drawings and paintings with other artists whose work she admired. The very first piece she collected was a drawing of herself by a friend Rafael Blanco Nieves, who was studying art with her in Madrid. Over the next 40 years she has collected many more pieces by other artist-friends. Her collection includes a mix of large and small works. She likes to see the artist’s hand in the work and says she is drawn to work that speaks of a sense of place, feels substantive, and provokes her eye, heart, and mind. “Art feeds me, it nourishes me, it helps me read my own mind.” says Levy. Some of the work she’s collected has become like family to her. Some she is ready to let go of, knowing they will find a good home.

Susan Napack says she was a collector and artist before she even knew what that meant. She saved orange peels, seeds and nuts from the ground — taking home anything that sparked her curiosity. She says, “I do not remember my first art purchase, but the thrill of seeing a work of art that I have to live with and paying for it became an immediate addiction and my greatest indulgence.” Susan Napack, artist, graphic designer, and glass jewelry maker, is a long time South Orange resident and active participant in the local art community.

Arlene Neivert’s apartment is FULL of art. Every inch of the walls is covered and there’s more in her house in Florida. Clearly this is something she is passionate about. She recalls purchasing her first piece from a gallery in Maplewood years ago. She says the kids were out of the house and she finally had some extra money and art is what she wanted to spend it on. Around this same time Doris Froelich encouraged her to become a docent at the Newark Museum. Arlene was sure they were not going to accept her because she knew nothing about art, but she was good with people and she had a loud voice and the job was hers. She credits her work as a docent for teaching her a lot about art and she continued to collect, going to shows and often getting in early with the dealers where she would get the bargains and the best picks. Some of the artists she purchased early become uncollectable once they took off. She recalls more than once asking after a certain artist only to be told they were no longer in her price point. Lately she has been collecting a lot of outsider art, but she says even that has become in vogue and often out of her price range. Arlene’s collection is bright and playful and she clearly derives a great deal of joy from living with the art she has collected. Arlene has been a valuable volunteer for the popular and successful, South Orange Maplewood Artist’s Studio Tour.

Miriam Sumner has been a long time resident of South Orange and was part of the original founding group of the Gallery of South Orange, now known as Pierro Gallery. Her collection includes works by her mother, Florence Jasin Orenstein, about whom she writes: “Mom was an energetic and inspired teacher. She was a great reader, loved word games, and painted maps on the floor of her fifth grade class. She looked after many elderly relatives while raising us and working. When she retired, she took an art class and started by drawing a fellow student, Mrs. Harari — the worst drawing I ever saw. However, Mom was undeterred and eventually painted beautifully, often depicting scenes from her travels, working mostly from photos. She even won several awards for her works.”

Sylvia Taylor is an artist/collector who resides in the Valley Arts District in Orange, NJ. Inspired by the burgeoning craft movement of the 1970s, Sylvia attended California College of Arts and Crafts and studied fiber arts, moving into jewelry and metal work later on. Having collected crafts for many years, she started collecting artwork because she was surrounded by so many amazing artists. The first painting in her collection was by an artist who shared her Norwegian heritage and acquired by trading her studio jewelry for the painting. Finding herself more drawn to Abstract Expressionism and contemporary art over time, today Sylvia focuses her collection on non-representational art, often with elements of texture or found objects.

Judy Targan, a longtime South Orange resident, is a popular artist and a seasoned collector with an important, extensive and cohesive collection of contemporary art. Judy lives with her collection, beautifully displayed in her home. She thrives on surrounding herself with the artwork, remembering the experiences and stories that make each piece even more personal.

In 1988, April Tracey opened Art Noise, a creative, interactive space for artists and patrons of the arts in the heart of downtown Kingston, Ontario Canada. It was comprised of an art school, an art and graphic supply store and an art gallery. Kingston, Ontario, located between Toronto and Montreal, is home to many artists, writers and musicians with patrons coming from across the country and overseas. It was during this time, that April began to build a collection of art. Suzanne Charo was one of the many artists that April collected. Suzanne received her BFA from Queen’s University and was actively involved with the arts community. April was drawn to Suzanne’s strong, bold style and her simplicity of form. In the early 90’s Suzanne was inspired by the Petroglyph cave drawings located in Bancroft, Ontario. One can see this influence in the small chalk pastel drawing of the horses. April received her BFA from Queen’s University in 1987. A serial entrepreneur, she has opened many successful arts related businesses. April emigrated from Canada to the U.S.in 2013 and resides in the Valley Arts District Firehouse Lofts where she continues to create art, to teach and to inspire others to tap into their creative spirit.

Kristen Tyler Cook is a resident of South Orange, NJ and is the owner-operator of MT House Estate and Moving Sales. An avid collector and seller, she founded and administers the popular Facebook groups Swap/Meet SOMa and Swap/Meet SOMa ISO In Search of. She hails from Nashville, Tennessee and studied Art Therapy at New York University. She has worked as an Art Therapist at institutions and organizations, including locally at Arts Unbound in Orange, NJ. Kristen comes from a family of artists and a good portion of her art collection consists of her father’s, sister’s and daughter’s artwork. Her dad, Charlie Cook, is a painter and when he lived in Nashville, buyers would simply stop by his friendly studio to buy his colorful works. He studied at Pratt Institute and Cooper Union in New York City and his work can be found in the collections of retailers such as Chico’s and Pottery Barn. Her daughter Daisy, a college freshman created the playful decoupage violins while she was still in high school. Her sister Polly is also a popular artist.

Sarah Canfield speaking with Florence Weisz, Luis Alves in background. Photographed by Susan Napack

Sarah Canfield speaking with Florence Weisz, Luis Alves in background.
Photographed by Susan Napack

Florence Weisz says, “When I lived in Jerusalem from 1966 to 1974 I collected artworks there. I found the first piece in my Israeli art collection at a frame shop in Jerusalem. Hanging on the wall of the shop I saw an oil pastel of the Judean Hills that appealed to me. The framer said he had acquired it as barter for a framing job he did for the artist and agreed to sell it to me for a very good price. The second piece I collected was a collage painting by Izzika Gaon. I first met him when I taught at the Youth Wing of the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, where he was creating innovative art programs. It was an honor to know him. He later became the director of the Design Department of the Israel Museum. The most valuable artwork in my collection is an expressionistic oil pastel by Avigdor Stematsky, one of the pioneers of Israeli abstract art. I am currently collecting art by fellow artists I know and admire. I buy art that speaks to me through color and composition and am pleased to have art I love in my home.” Florence Weisz is a practicing visual artist and a recipient of a NJ State Council on the Arts Fellowship Award. She majored in studio art at Douglass Collage- Rutgers University, and then continued to create art in Paris, New York City, Jerusalem, and for the last few decades in South Orange, New Jersey

Fran Willner (1918-2014) was a long time Maplewood resident, art teacher, and a unique artist who was much loved in the local community and beyond. Fran admired and collected other artist’s work in her home, but also as part of her trove of infinite objects that often made their way into her art. From the mad jumble of countless boxes and bags in her studio came often playful “bricolage” works of beauty, humor and imagination. She taught for many years at the New Jersey Center for the Visual Arts, the Newark Museum and was actively teaching until just weeks before her death last year. An award- winning artist, she exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art, the Smithsonian, Victoria and Albert Museum, and in galleries throughout New Jersey. She began her eight-decade career as a fashion designer before moving into painting, printmaking, found art sculpture, book and paper making, and other multi-media arts. Fran studied art at the American School of Fine Arts, Newark School of Fine Arts, and Fairleigh Dickinson University. The works in this exhibition were generously donated by Fran’s family to The 1978 Maplewood Arts Center. Proceeds from all sales will benefit the center as well as public art in the community.

About the Pierro Gallery

The Pierro Gallery of South Orange is on the second floor of the Baird Center, 5 Mead Street, South Orange, NJ. Gallery hours are M-TH 11am-4pm and by appointment. The gallery presents up to seven exhibitions a year, along with related interpretive programs that are free to the public. Exhibitions represent the work of diverse contemporary professional artists and emphasize local and regional points of view. Free tours for groups and schools can be scheduled by contacting South Orange Director of Cultural Affairs, Sandy Martiny at smartiny@southorange.org.

The programs at the Pierro Gallery of South Orange are made possible in part by funds from the New Jersey State Council of the Arts/Department of State, a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts.

Contact: Sandy Martiny, Director of Cultural Affairs Telephone 973-378-7754 x 2223 smartiny@southorange.org
Website www.thebaird.org


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