Saturday, January 31, 2015

Creating on an iPad

Today the Boatworks saw the first meeting of a new class taught by Catherine Trapani, who comes to us after having lived and worked in such places as Seattle and Santa Fe.  Back in New Jersey for a while, she is planning a variety of winter classes through BelmarArts.  This afternoon was the first session in a class called "Let's Create with iPad."  Participants will be encouraged to unleash their creativity, drawing and mixing and layering colors using the tools provided by the Paper 53 app, as seen below.

Each workshop covers basics and provides cues to enhance mastery and enjoyment of this process.  For example, in this opening session Catherine and the participants played a couple of rounds of the classic Surrealist game Exquisite Corpse.

The three artists each took a part of the body and independently produced a colorful digital drawing.  These were sent directly to our office printer, and once printed everyone could finally see what the others produced, as well as the results when all the parts were joined together.  Below are the two composite artworks.

There are three more scheduled meetings for this class, and it's possible to sign up for them individually, so it's not too late to join the fun.  Details are available on the class's page on our main website, where you'll also find information about her planned classes in February and March covering "Modern Master Techniques" and "Printmaking without a Press."  Get involved before it's too late.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Abstractions by Zol

The side gallery at the Boatworks currently features an exhibition of abstract painting by Zolbayar Uguumursaikhan, who is kind enough to let us call him Zol.  The opening reception was held tonight and drew a pretty good crowd, many of whom wanted to know about the work.  The artist is originally from St Petersburg, with stops in Moscow and Mongolia on his way to this country, where he arrived at age 13.

Zol uses his work to explore his interest in the process of creation, seeing a link between what he does as a visual artist and the earth's never ending cycle of life.

The use of the natural materials, minerals, and elements of the earth makes him both part of a tradition that has followed humanity from ancient cave art to the painting of the Renaissance to today, and also part of billions of years of geology and biology.  The full version of his artist statement is currently posted on the main website for those who want to know more.

Providing entertainment for the reception was BelmarArts favorite Thomas Wesley Stern, whose music has nothing specifically to do with Zol's artistic philosophy, but was equally enjoyed by the crowd.  In typical fashion, the crowd gradually drifted away from the art in the front and side galleries gather around the food and music.

The Abstractions by Zol exhibition remains on display during regular gallery hours through February 6, 2015.

No Sew Fleece Blankets from Fiber Fridays

Yesterday the Boatworks hosted the latest meeting my the Fiber Fridays shared interest group.  Attendance was light, but those present made quick work of the fleece provided by Blankie Depot to create eleven no-sew blankets.  All handmade blankets and comfort items donated to Blankie Depot go directly to children in crisis through hospitals, first aid squads, and other service centers.

Greg Insetto, the organization's new executive director, was there to introduce himself and the mission. He recently taught himself to crochet, so expect to see the results during "show and tell" at a future group meeting.

BelmarArts will be a drop off location for any donations of handmade blankets or other items for Blankie Depot.  Check the organization's web site to learn more and what they are looking for.

The next Fiber Fridays group meeting will be on Friday, March 27th, where they will be "hand knitting" scarves from t-shirts.

photos and story courtesy of Rebecca Szabo

Saturday, January 17, 2015

You Are What You Eat opens in Belmar

2015 is here and the Belmar Arts Council is back open for business.  As in recent years, we started the new year with a member salon exhibition.  All current members could pay the fee and place one or two pieces in the show, which has the title and theme "You Are What You Eat."  We had 23 member artists decide to participate, providing 31 food themed artworks that fill our front gallery.  As usual, there is incredible diversity in the represented mediums- painting, collage, photography, mixed media, fibers, pastels, ink drawing, printmaking, and found objects/trash.

Because this is a Salon style show, as part of the opening reception each artist was invited to speak for a few minutes about their piece- the story behind it, process, etc.  They could also take questions if any came their way.

Art about food is fairly common- it's part of our daily lives- but many of the artists were able to discuss personal and cultural connections to the subjects of their pieces.  If nothing else, food subjects can provide means to explore color, shape, texture, pattern, and other formal artistic issues, plus maybe provide a snack when you're done.

We are estimating that we had a little over 100 people in attendance, which is more than we would typically expect for a winter show with 23 artists, but part of this show was that the participants were asked to bring food related to that depicted in their artworks.  Spam, Mac & Cheese, and Tomato Soup can be seen in both the art above, and the food table below.   Put out free food and people will show up.

Meanwhile, the back room is displaying favorite works from some long time members, part of a nice atmosphere enjoyed by many after the Salon portion of the evening was over.

The You Are What You Eat exhibition will remain on display through February 27, 2015.  Regular gallery hours are Wednesday to Saturday, 1 to 5 pm, and admission is free.