Monday, December 23, 2013

Slick Lands in Belmar

Julie Slick performs at BelmarArts' coffee-house style venue.

Last Saturday night, December 21, Julie Slick, world-traveling virtuoso bassist and composer, landed at the BelmarArts on her way to dates in Australia and then in Israel.  The solo show, arranged by new BelmarArts member Mark Rocktashel, featured songs from her two albums as well as new material.  Enjoying her distinctive voice with elements of progressive rock and jazz were music lovers from all over including a family of three who traveled over two hours from the Hudson River area in New York.

Photo by Steve Lacko

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Rockin' & Rollin' @ BelmarArts

Joe Harvard & Velveeta
Photo from Chris Krebs

Photo by Steve Lacko

The crowd rocked the Big Room of BelmarArts on Friday night, December 13 during an art and music tribute to Lou Reed.  Mr. Reed was an American musician, singer and songwriter who played with the Velvet Underground in the late 1960's.  Best known for Walk on the Wild Side during his solo career, he died October 27 of this year.

Between songs our guests were able to shop for unique items at the Wearable, Usable, Functional (WUF) Art Show and Sale.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

December Happening - Big Band Music, Mulled Cider and Santa

Revamped members meetings are now Happenings and songs and talk reverberated in the Big Room of the BelmarArts on Thursday evening (December 5) for the December Happening.

The evening began with refreshments brought by BelmarArts Trustees and visits with friends.  After some short introductions, Big Band singer Cheryl Parker and her accompanist, pianist Mark Cohn, took to the microphones telling us about the big band music of the early 20th century.  Interspersed with the facts were the songs, and we all sang along.

We ended the performance part of the evening with some music of the holiday season -- as Cheryl sang  to her favorite Santas.

Some more eating and visiting along with a little shopping at the Wearable, Usable Functional Art Show and Sale in the Front Gallery ended the evening as we wished a good night to all.

Trustees present included current chairman Dana Cohoon, incoming co-chairmen Ali Martin and John "Hutch" Hutchinson, vice chair Beverly Miller, secretary Jim Aberle, treasurer Luis Pulido, and trustees Joan Wallace, Barbara Griffin, Pat Hutchinson, Tom Volker and Joe Villa.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Joe Miller Live at BelmarArts

For the second time this past weekend music emanated from the BelmarArts as Joe Miller introduced his Last Hurrah Kickstarter Concert on Sunday evening.  The concert goers enjoyed the intimate coffee-house style setting of the Big Room as they listened to Mr. Miller's voice and guitar.  

The Wearable, Usable, Functional Art Show and Sale was open for the shopping pleasure of those in attendance.  Newly added to the items for sale are CDs from recent performers at the BelmarArts including Mr. Miller, Karen Phillips and April Kelly.  

Photo by Chris Krebs

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Extended December Gallery Hours for Holiday Shopping

The BelmarArts Front Gallery, with the Wearable, Usable, Functional Art Show and Sale, will be open extended hours during December for your shopping pleasure.  Hours during the month are Wednesday - Sunday from 1:00 - 5:00 p.m.

Change: The Gallery will not have extended hours on Friday, December 6 as previously announced.  Closing will be at 5:00 p.m. so plan to do your browsing and buying before heading to the Belmar Tree Lighting.

BelmarArts is taking part in the Tour of the Inns and Holiday Kickoff on Saturday, December 7 and will be open until 7:00 p.m.

The Front Gallery also will be open for browsing and shopping during the Members Happening on Thursday evening, December 5 at 7:00 p.m. Mingle with BelmarArts Trustees, learn about and hear the sounds of the Big Band Era from our special guest performer Cheryl Parker and try out your own voice on some seasonal songs.  Refreshments will be served.  Please bring a canned good or dry non-perishable food item to be donated to the local food bank.  This event is free and open to everyone.


Karen Phillips Performs in the Big Room at BelmarArts

Friday night, November 29, Karen Phillips performed live in the Big Room at the BelmarArts before an enthusiastic audience. Approximately 50 fans clapped their hands and tapped their feet as Ms. Phillips introduced her hew new CD release, Coming Home.  And when the performers took a break those in attendance did some holiday shopping at the Wearable, Usable, Functional Art Show and Sale open in the Front Gallery.

Photo by Chris Krebs

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

2014 BelmarArts Officers and Trustees Announced

BelmarArts announces the officers for 2014.

Alexandra Martin (Belmar) and John "Hutch" Hutchinson (Belmar) - Co-Chairs
Beverly Miller (Avon) - Vice Chair
James Aberle (Manasquan) - Secretary
Luis B. Pulido (Belmar) - Treasurer

Officers will serve 2-year terms. 

Re-elected as Trustees for another 3-year term are Barbara Griffin (Wall), Steve Lacko (Belmar),
Beverly Miller (Avon) and Luis B. Pulido (Belmar).  

Trustees continuing are James Aberle (Manasquan), Patricia Hutchinson (Belmar), Chris Krebs (Wall), Alexandra Martin (Belmar), Christina Sanes (Manasquan), Joseph Villa (Port Monmouth), Tom Volker (Belmar), Joan Wallace (Manasquan), Jennifer Nicolay (Belmar), Geraldine Vergona (Point Pleasant Beach), and Dana Cohoon (Neptune).

Elected to the Chairman's Advisory Committee is Margaret McChesney (Spring Lake Heights).  She joins members Matt Doherty, chairman, (Belmar), Frank Sementa (Belmar) and Tracie Orsi (Belmar).

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Wearable Usable Functional 2013

Tonight the Boatworks hosted the opening of the 2013 edition of Wearable Usable Functional.  This annual exhibition and sale fills our front room with a wide variety of fine handmade craft items.  No need to wait for Black Friday- WUF is here right now.

The inventory includes an assortment of jewelry, ceramics, fabric based items, home accessories, and potential stocking stuffers.

The Boatworks quickly filled with art lovers, looking to get out of the cold, and to find some unique creative items, whether to use a holiday gifts or to keep for themselves.

Meanwhile, our back gallery is filled with framed fine art from our members.

A lot of the crowd drifted to the back, to enjoy the art, the company of friends, refreshments, and live music from some of our more musical members.  The new stage still needs some specialized work, but it was finished enough to use for the first time.

The Wearable Usable Functional show will remain on display through January 2, 2014.  The Boatworks will be open extended hours for the duration of this exhibition, our regular gallery hours of Wednesday to Saturday 1 to 5 (except for Thanksgiving and Christmas Day), plus Sundays from 1 to 5 as well.  In addition, we'll be open on Friday, December 6th (the night of Belmar's Tree Lighting) until 7:00 pm.  Admission is free.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

The Boatworks, Inside and Out

Just before a slowdown in our schedule at the Boatworks things were very busy.  On Friday November 8th work was able to continue on the stage rebuilding project.  A window was put in and exterior siding was installed.

Meanwhile inside the Boatworks we had art coming and going.  The various artworks that had made up both the Masquerade show and Swans Swans Swans were taken down from the walls and picked up by the artists.  At the same time, new fine art and crafts were arriving, to be part of our annual Wearable Usable Functional show.  By Saturday afternoon we had enough stuff to fill a room.

On Sunday our own Neil Scheck volunteered to straighten up some of the debris left behind by the construction crew.   With that, the outside of our new stage was finished.  There are still a few things to be taken care of with the interior stage construction, but we are hopeful that we will be hosting shows there within a few weeks.

Things will be kind of quiet around the Boatworks over the next few weeks, with just a few classes on the schedule and the gallery closed.  But the fun starts up again on Saturday November 23rd with the opening reception for Wearable Usable Functional from 5:00 to 7:00 pm.  The show remains up through January 3, 2014 during regular gallery hours (minus a few holidays here and there).  Admission is free.

photos courtesy of Dana Cohoon

Saturday, November 9, 2013

November BAC Member's Meeting

Kathleen Larkin was the guest speaker at the November member's meeting this past Thursday at the Boatworks.   She described how she went from being a retired Toms River art teacher to owning a successful antique/gift shop and gallery in New York's Adirondack Mountain region.  She interspersed her story with readings from her book Through These Doors:  The Story of a Small Business in the Adirondacks.  Those present were able to enjoy such seasonal treats as apple cider doughnuts and pumpkin cake, along with apple cider and coffee.

The guest speaker at our next member meeting will be Ocean Grove resident and big band singer Cheryl Parker.  The subject of her presentation will be the big band era, and the evening will include a sing-along and get together in the spirit of the holiday.  It will be Thursday, December 5th beginning at 7:00 pm, and is free to all members.

photos and description courtesy of Dana Cohoon

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Swans Swans Swans

We currently have two exhibitions on display at the Boatworks- our Masquerade show and a smaller show in our side gallery featuring the work of well know Sea Girt artist Andy Dennis.  This past October 20th we held a special reception for this show of paintings featuring, you guessed it, swans.  Even one on the cake.

Friends and family of Andy and wife Sandy Dennis were invited, along with the trustees and patron members of the Belmar Arts Council.

Local musician Keith Calmes provided acoustic guitar music during the reception.

The music and cake are long gone, but you still have a few days left to see the exhibition.  The show, along with Masquerade, closes this Friday, November 8th to make room for the next exhibition.  All the work in Swans Swans Swans is for sale, with 100% of the money going to the BAC, but you may come see the show for free during our open gallery hours.

photos courtesy of Dana Cohoon

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Belmar Now, Broadway Later

Although the stage at the Boatworks has been absent since early in the summer (work continues next week we hope),  the building is still seeing the occasional musical performance.  Today we saw the beginning of what may eventually be a Broadway show.  Musician and composer Tim McCorry, a longtime BAC member and our founding Chairman, chose our headquarters for the premier performance of the songs from Coyote, the Musical.  Tim's show, a love story set against the background of the dangerous world of human smuggling across the border, has been a work in progress for a while now, and it may be years before it will be ready for a full stage production.  However, an appreciative audience got to hear him perform all the songs written so far, accompanying himself on piano.  Between songs he provided a synopsis of the show's story at those points.

Following the last song, Tim answered questions from the audience (about 25 people were in attendance) and provided insight into what goes into the creation of a musical with aspirations of reaching the biggest of all stages.  Based on the response from today, it has not been a wasted effort.  Much more information about the show can be found at

additional photos provided by Dana Cohoon

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

A Butterfly Lands in Belmar

A butterfly sponsored by the Arts Society of Keyport landed in Belmar several weeks ago, looking for colorful images to celebrate the town's resilience after the challenges of Hurricane Sandy.  The traveling butterfly is a project of the Keyport arts group, who received a grant from the Monmouth County ArtHelps program to circulate the fiberglass insect through a number of coastal towns that suffered devastation in the storm.  Fran McCloskey of the Belmar Arts Council painted the lower quadrant of the butterfly's left wing with an image from Belmar's boardwalk and an inspiring quote from Proverbs.  The finished butterfly will visit several more shore towns before taking up residence again in Keyport.

story and photos courtesy  Pat Hutchinson

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Train Station Mural Update

The train station mural project is finally going forward.  The committee has chosen a design, which will  eventually be executed on fabric that will be adhered to the train station exterior.  However, it was decided that the current train station wall won't be suitable for that, so our first step will be building a new one.  Good quality half inch plywood will be primed and attached over the whole wall, and then the mural will be attached to that.  Therefore, our starting point is the wood.  It will take 22 sheets of plywood to do the job, which has been donated by Jaeger Lumber.

Using all three rooms of the Boatworks, we were able to set up 9 boards at a time, on top of tables and saw horses.  BAC volunteers took turns using the four rollers to roll coats of white primer (provided by Belmar Paints) on first one side of the wood, and then the other.

When both sides of the boards were dry, we could move them to a safe place and put out a new set.  When this process is all done, they will be cut to their proper shape and size and be installed on the train station wall.  Check here for future updates.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Masquerade Opening Reception

Today the Boatworks hosted the opening reception for new Masquerade exhibition, featuring art inspired by the mystery of the mask.  A very large crowd developed quickly, moving into all three rooms of the building.

Exhibition jurors Vincent Nardone and Jose Gonzalez selected 50 works for the show, which includes mediums such as painting, drawing, mixed media, printmaking, digital art, photography, fibers, ceramics, and items sculpted and crafted from a very wide variety of materials.

The Masquerade show fills every bit of the front and back gallery spaces, while our side room includes a solo exhibition of paintings from Andrew Dennis called Swans, Swans, Swans.  This show is a benefit for the BAC, which keeps all the proceeds from sales of these works.

Whenever possible we like to have live entertainment at our openings, and this time around it was Murph and Marie, who took turns on the guitar, as well as alternating between solo and duet arrangements.

The exhibition jurors chose seven works for awards:

Best In Show
Kathleen Nademus
Send in the Jesters II
cyanotype print

First Place Painting
Pat Hutchinson
Kitchen Avatar
oil on canvas

First Place Photography
Joe Villa
After the Party

First Place Mixed Media
Patricia Bevere
mixed media

First Place Graphics/Drawing
Bill Ross
Black Death
white charcoal on black paper

First Place Sculpture
Carol Gleason

Honorable Mention
Rebecca Lopez-Deren
The Crab That Wants to be Caught

The Masquerade exhibition and concurrent Swans, Swans, Swans show will be on display through November 8, 2013.  Gallery hours are Wednesday to Saturday, 1 to 5 pm.  Admission is free.

additional photos courtesy Pat Hutchinson