Saturday, May 5, 2018

From Their Perspective

For a few years now we have been doing Youth art shows at BelmarArts.  Lots of good reasons for this.  All organizations need new blood now and then if they are going to survive.  And anyone who works with children, or has some, knows that they very much like making art.  Skills and knowledge vary, but the desire is there, and they enjoy the process.  Some are even surprisingly creative.  Probably the biggest obstacle for young artists is finding places to show art, or even learning how to go about finding exhibition opportunities.

At BelmarArts we can't solve every problem, but we can help with this one.  We tend to enlist the help of people with more experience.  The organizers of this year's Youth show are Amy Lepping and Kristen Lanfrank, two teachers out of the Rumson area.  They in turn got help from many other school teachers. All of the artists in this show are from 5th grade through high school, chosen up to 6 at a time by their various school teachers.   This is an opportunity for those teachers to get to know each other, but most important is a chance for potential artists to learn what it's like to be part of a show outside their school, as well as learn a little bit about what artists need to do outside an academic setting.  The 8 year range of ages provides further mixing for the young artists.  Most of the  approximately 50 artists are from the Monmouth County area, though a few are from further parts of the state, another way they get to interact.

This year's exhibition theme is "From My Perspective" and like all good themes, it allows for many possibilities.  There are a lot of self portraits, probably not surprising in a group show that includes the "selfie" generation.  However, there are many other subjects and other interpretations of the perspectives.  As is typical, there are paintings, drawings, sculptures, photographs, sculptures, mixed media pieces, etc.

Tonight was the official opening reception for the show.  Early on attendance was sparse, as can happen when most of the participants have never been to the Boatworks before.  Some computerized directions still believe we are located in the middle of the route 35 overpass over the Shark River inlet.  But the participants started arriving.  People came and went, but through most of the event we had 40-50 people present.

Award winners for this exhibition were chosen by our Trustees.  Here are the award winning pieces for this year and the artists who created them:

Kayla Mitchell
grade 12
Monmouth Regional High School

Logan Rettino
grade 5
Canvas Studio Art

Izzie Rosa
grade 11
Rumson Fair Haven

Sofia Scandariato
grade 8
Forrestdale School

"From My Perspective" will be on display at the Boatworks during regular gallery hours (Wed-Sat 1-5 pm) through May 18, 2018.  Admission is free.

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Belmar Art Walk 2018

One tradition that we have in Belmar is the annual Art Walk.  Artists of all kinds set up in and out of buildings, up and down Main Street, showing all passersby what they can do.  And pedestrians all around town are invited to walk around and check out these arts.  Today was one of those days.  As luck would have it, it was a pretty nice day to walk around.  Talk of rain was revised to not arrive until possibly late at night.  We did not have as large a crowd of either artists or viewers as we sometime have had in the past, but still it seemed to be a pretty good and productive day.

One of the places one could pick up a list of artist locations and a basic map was at our headquarters, the Boatworks.   Inside on our stage we had performances by 40 Winx, playing old favorites.

With the current JAS 14 exhibition up all around her, in the front room gallery Terry demonstrated embroidery.  Seems to be a simple, but meticulous process.  Still, she seemed open to the possibility of a workshop or class series on the topic, so if you have a strong desire to learn it, talk to the office and maybe someday it will happen.

Meanwhile our side parking lot was closed off, which turned out to be to allow a community mosaic mural project to happen.  A supply of tile and glass was being cut into small pieces so that they could be used to make a large mosaic.  Visitors were invited to participate, and I was told that the sailboat images in the foreground area were done by community participants.

Moving up Main Street into Pyanoe Plaza there was some activity going on.  Live music, and tents and tables set up.  This included some art workshops by our Young Rembrandts artists.


As usual, there were some artists set up at tables in front of various businesses.  Above, Brittany Kopf shows paintings and prints, and below, authors Dee Anderson and Louise Rempe talked up their books (and sold some, too) to people who made it as far as 10th Avenue.

The furthest north that this blogger reached was just past 6th Avenue, where Donna Mechura was displaying and selling glass art, enjoying the sun and nice weather.  Across the road, the municipal building seemed to be under siege from a bunch of skateboarders, who seemed to be doing more harm to themselves than the building, but I gave them a wide berth and came back around to the Boatworks.  

The art walk was scheduled to end.  Progress and been made on the mosaic mural, though not quite finished yet.  I was told that it was expected to be part of the outdoor sculpture garden/labyrinth in progress, so stop by in the future and you may see it.  Meanwhile it was brought back indoors, where it was accompanied by many artists and art walkers, who came by for a little reception we had going on- more live music, refreshments, etc.

Like I said, a pretty good day.

Saturday, April 7, 2018

JAS14 Opens in Belmar

Tonight was the award reception for the 14th Annual Juried Art Show at BelmarArts.  The show opened to the public last week, but tonight was the party.  The exhibition was juried by Josephine Barriero, and curated by Dorie Dahlberg.  It includes 60 works by 49 artists, a typical mix of paintings, drawings, photographs, ceramics, and sculpture.  It fills both the front and back galleries of the Boatworks.

It's much easier to see the work in the show when the reception is not going on, but as one artist told me last week, it's more exciting when the crowd is there.  We are estimating more than 90 visitors, in addition to employees and board members present.

Prizes for the exhibition were announce around 6:00 pm.   Our juror awarded nine pieces in total.  Here are the award winning pieces:
First Place
Mary Kliauga

Second Place
Pink Hibiscus
Vince Matulewich

Third Place
51 %
Patti Kaufman

Achievement Award
Clothes Lines
mixed media
Donna D'Amico

Achievement Award
Fish II
Beverly Hertler

Achievement Award
On Stand Down
Frank Parisi

Honorable Mention
Peep Show: La Leche de Madre #1
Louise Krasniewicz

Honorable Mention
Out For A Walk
Beth De Martino

Honorable Mention
The Woodworker
Michael Scherfen

The 14th Annual Juried Art Show will remain on display at the Boatworks during regular gallery hours through Thursday, May 3, 2018.  Admission is free.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Open Up the Book Arts Show

The Boatworks is no stranger to literary events and interests.  We've had writers groups, book publishing workshops, and book signing events, including one just last month.  And there have been times when books and related objects were part of group exhibitions in our gallery space.  but we never had a book themed exhibition...until now.  Welcome to the Book Art show.

This exhibition is curated by Louise Krasniewicz and features a wide variety of book themed art.  The show is intended to explore the relationships between the written word, books as physical objects, and the visual arts.  Artists were invited to provide art inspired by book sources, such as literary adaptations, sculptures made from book parts and materials, art that referenced book binding, famous literary characters, and anything else related.  Almost 40 artworks took on that challenge.

Besides book inspired artworks, the show includes other items related to books for viewers to enjoy, such as small libraries of books, information about comic books and their place in education, and even literary paper dolls for people to make.

Not our largest ever crowd, but the galleries were full, front and back.  Some even took advantage of the invitation to come dressed as favorite authors or characters from books.

The Book Arts Show will remain on display during regular gallery hours, through March 23, 2018.  Admission if free.