The following is from the Supervisor of Fine Arts at South Orange Maplewood School:
COLUMBIA HIGH SCHOOL
SEPTEMBER 2 – 30, 2016
The title of this exhibit is deliberately ambiguous.
Feel free to mix and match the words. We find ourselves inhabiting a COMMON PLACE. What do we have in COMMON? The three local artists exhibited here explore the COMMONPLACE in UNCOMMON ways.
The expansiveness of an inner spiritual place, independent of physical losses is explored by Sybil Archibald in her monotype series, The Inner Life of the Artist. She touches upon the timeless internal landscape that supports the practice of art and the experience of listening on a very deep level without expectation.
Memory, identity, and globalization are examined by Terry Boddie as he invokes the
experience of migration in his series Residual memory. Memories of a former home merge with the changes and challenges of the new place and culture. As a photographer and multi-disciplinary artist he blurs the distinctions between photography, drawing,
With both dark humor and playfulness, Russell Christian populates his spaces with contorting characters, experiencing the confines of a particular place, time, or
situation. He comes from a perspective of drawing cartoons and performing, and we are witness to his alter egos’ efforts to fit in, or get out, of the imposed grids.
Visitors are invited to explore the sense of place uniquely portrayed by each of these artists. As we engage their work and examine their recurring themes, we are encouraged to recognize and appreciate our commonalities and differences.
Ellen Weisbord, Curator / Art Teacher
With Special Thanks to
The Participating Artists,
Bisa Butler, Art Teacher,
Jon Fisher, Photography Teacher
Linda Nettleton, Formerly of the Newark Museum
Amy Singer, Office of Student Activities
Elizabeth Aaron, Principal
UN-COMMON-PLACE is part of a community-wide project initiated by the Lennie Pierro Memorial Foundation, directed by Judy Wukitsch, in conjunction with the upcoming exhibition, A SENSE OF PLACE, KIKI AND SETON SMITH, a tribute to two outstanding artists/native daughters at the Walsh Gallery, Seton Hall University, October 30-December 9. With a spirit of mentorship, LPMAF considers sharing the artists’ background, thoughts, and ideas as imparting a tremendous realization of possibilities, especially to young people, through their work, conversation, and a catalogue that includes biographical glimpses and impacts. Having a connection to someone or someplace that has given rise to prominence often broadens the horizon of others. A sense of place is the foundation from which we all mature physically, emotionally, and existentially.
School District teachers are invited to involve their students in an exploration of a sense of place through art and writing. Coinciding with the exhibition at Seton Hall, the Domareki Gallery at Columbia High School will feature the work produced by South Orange Maplewood School District students. Their work will also be included in an on-line exhibition.
The Pierro Gallery of South Orange, takes a political look at the idea of place, in POLITICO: (Do You) Know your place?, November 3 through December 3. “Know Your Place” is an idiom often used to keep people from challenging the status quo, and seems particularly relevant in this election cycle. Curators Raleigh Ceasar and Sandy Martiny investigate the ways artists have responded to the election issues regarding race and feminism
At the South Orange Play Day participants of all ages and abilities will have the opportunity to join in DRAWING FACE-TO-FACE WITH NEIGHBORS. It is the wonderfully diverse people of South Orange that make it such a special place. What better way to get to know someone new than by sitting across a table, learning a little bit about each other, and taking the time to really see one another. Visitors will be invited to take a chance drawing with blind contour technique, looking only at the subject and not the paper. The results are always fun, with no pressure to get it right. The drawings will be displayed throughout the day, and some will be exhibited at the Pierro Gallery in November and will appear in an on-line exhibition.
On Septemeber 2, the fine arts teachers of the South Orange Maplewood School district engaged in professional development that included talks from Pierro Foundation president Judy Wukitsch and Pierro Gallery director Sandy Martiny, a performance and gallery talk by South Orange artist Russell Christian, and a gallery talk and monotype workshop with South Orange artist Sybil Archibald. The teachers were very excited to be a part of the launching of this community partnership and expressed great satisfaction with the day’s events to Ellen Weisbord who curated the exhibit and organized the professional development for her colleagues in the Art Department.