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Newark USA

A fotojournal about LIVING in Newark USA, New Jersey's largest and most cultured city, by the author of the foto-essay website RESURGENCE CITY: Newark USA.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Rutgers Art Opening Reception THIS EVENING

This foto and the two below are of the Main Gallery of the Robeson Center seen thru a second-floor window at a time it was closed (that is, other than its regular hours of Monday-Thursday, 10am-5pm, and during special receptions.)

Rutgers-Newark has six art-exhibition spaces in the Robeson Campus Center and one in the Law and Justice Center. The Robeson Galleries are hosting an opening reception for the University's Spring Semester exhibits this evening.

The emailed announcement contains a representative artwork from each new show, but rather than delay to request use of their illustrations, I present, interspersed below, fotos from the last time I visited the Robeson Center, last March. I'm unpleasantly surprised that it has been so long. But parking is difficult around there as late as 9pm or even later (due to nite classes, I assume), and I generally have to park on Boyden Street and hike almost a half mile. I'm not always in the mood to do that, esp. in inclement weather.

The exhibitions in the Orbit Galleries are generally dense with multiple small images and informational texts that students who have a substantial break between classes can peruse at their leisure. Rarely is any one image large or striking enuf for me to have isolated it in closeup. The fotos below merely give an overview of the kinds of materials shown.

Here is the text of the email notice.
Spring 2013 Exhibitions Opening Reception
Thursday, January 31, 5pm-7pm

Join us for refreshments and a chance to mingle with the curator and artists for our Spring 2013 exhibitions.
Free and open to the public

350 Martin Luther King Blvd [near Bleeker Street]
Newark, NJ 07102
No Place Like Home
January 22 - April 4, 2013
Main Gallery [first floor, downstairs from MLK Blvd entrance]

The home is not only where the heart is, but also a site for politics and the imagination. While the news floods with coverage of foreclosures, vacancies, homelessness, and property values, entertainment media celebrate[ ] real estate shenanigans and home renovations. This exhibition includes work of contemporary artists grappling with the physical and psychological implications of "home."

Artists in this exhibition: Corinne May Botz, Marisa DiPaola, Kate Gilmore, Thomas Green, Mikhail Gubin, Louise Halsey, Sarah Hoskins, Aron G. Johnston Jr., Stephen Lorber, George Lorio, Jeanette May, Caitlin Parker, Martha Rosler, David H. Wells.
Marc D'Agusto: Forgotten Place
January 22 - July 24, 2013
Orbit 1 Gallery [2d floor, same level as MLK entrance]

Marc D'Agusto's multilayered work delves into ideas of transformation, renewal, and the passing of time. Using rust, cracks, and fissures in the surface of his work, D'Agusto draws attention to the past while utilizing images of the human body, architectural forms, and space to suggest rebirth and regeneration. He writes, "Like a molting cicada shedding its past life, my work explores traces of history and alludes to new beginnings."

Marc D'Agusto is an artist and educator whose works have been exhibited extensively in New Jersey, including solo exhibitions in Montclair, Watchung, and Newark. He is founder and executive director of Gravity Inc, an arts initiative seeking to increase collaboration among artists and accessibility to the arts. D'Agusto is currently Adjunct Professor of Fine Arts at Nyack College in New York City. [I Googled that, since Nyack is an area of Rockland County in Upstate New York; but there apparently is an extension unit in NYC.]
Primary Essences: Ben Georgia
January 22 - June 4, 2013
Orbit 2 Gallery [2d floor, same level as MLK entrance]

For painter Ben Georgia, abstraction offers the possibility of a fresh mode of communication. Georgia seeks a language that surpasses representation and the fleeting concerns of the moment, reaching towards expressing the emotional depths of human experience. Georgia writes, "I work to create something on the canvas which is not of this concrete, external world, and imaginary vision which I see from the start on the blank, white canvas and where the beauty and strength of the painting compensate for and counteract the tragedy and decay of life."

Ben Georgia is a New Jersey native who attended Rutgers Newark in the 1960s. His work has been exhibited in dozens of exhibitions in the nearly thirty years of his professional artistic practice, and can be found in many public and private collections throughout the United States, Europe, and Hong Kong.
Authors & Artists:
Portraits by Bonnie Gloris
January 22 - July 24, 2013
Pequod Deck Gallery [first floor, just outside the Starbucks]

"Authors & Artists" is an ongoing series of portraits in which Bonnie Gloris mixes realistic portraiture with more ambiguous elements to delve into the personalities of her subjects, inviting viewers to form their own conclusions and decipher the works line by line. The portraits are small in scale and as intimate as family photographs, their kitschy frames interacting with their subjects' elevated fame and stature.

Bonnie Gloris is a visual artist and independent curator who has shown her work in dozens of exhibitions across the United States.
Janice McDonnell:
The Death Penalty Ladies Society
January 22 - July 24, 2013
Criminal Justice Gallery
Center for Law and Justice, Rutgers University--Newark 123 Washington Street, Newark, NJ

Janice McDonnell writes: "Since the death penalty was reinstated in this country in 1976 twelve women have been executed ... Drawing from John singer Sargent's portraiture for inspiration, I've recast these women in the role of socialites; portraying them in a new, genteel light, elevating their status in our society, and confronting the treatment of the privileged in today's world. Their crimes were heinous, and their victims were real. And while not condoning their acts of violence, I question our double standards on how we as society judge its members."

Janice McDonnell is a Brooklyn-based artist who studied at the Art Students League and Ohio State University. Her works have shown extensively in New York City since 2002.

The Criminal Justice Gallery is located on the fifth floor of the Center for Law and Justice, Rutgers University, at 123 Washington Street, Newark, NJ. Upon exiting the elevator, take a right into the School of Criminal Justice to find the gallery.
Solar System, by Chris Burkie, in Orbit II Gallery last March.
Soma, Trickster & Myself
September 4, 2012 - July 24, 2013
Messier Gallery

David D. Oquendo leads his audience into a world populated with characters of indefinite human-animal-plant-fungus origin, each signifying a facet of Oquendo's philosophy and exploration of religion, culture, cosmology, and personal growth. Much of Oquendo's work functions in this multidimensional manner: ringing with pop culture and commercial imagery, yet simultaneously engaging questions that have remained relevant throughout the history of human experience. Of his perspective and motivation Oquendo writes, "it comes from my allure and skepticism of human perfection, self-improvement and maturation."

Oquendo received his BA from Rutgers University in 2009 and his MFA in painting from Montclair State University in 2012. Recent exhibitions include a solo show at Solo(s) Project House and exhibitions in Manhattan, London, Newark, and Montclair. He is the first artist to exhibit in the Paul Robeson Galleries' Messier Gallery, a mural space located on the third floor of the Robeson Campus Center. [Emphasis supplied for location info.]
Regular readers of this blog will have seen pictures of various works by Marc d'Agusto and David Oquendo. The other artists mentioned seem new to me.

There may be maps to the Orbit and Messier Galleries just outside the Main Gallery, to the right of the Nova Gallery (pictured above), which is not mentioned as having a new exhibition.

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