2008-01-04 / Columnists

From The Artists Studio

Rockaway Artists Alliance
Commentary by Susan Hartenstein

"Fountain Of Sinking Boat." Artist: Diane Ali. Medium: Photography. One of the works from "Get Out Of Town" RAA's new exhibit. "Fountain Of Sinking Boat." Artist: Diane Ali. Medium: Photography. One of the works from "Get Out Of Town" RAA's new exhibit. 'Get Out Of Town'Coming And LAPC Awaits

RAA CONTACT INFO: Phone: 718-474-0861; Fax: 718-474- 4373; e-mail: rockart116@aol.com; website: www.rockawayartistsalli ance.org

From the intimacy of a singer's exhaled note to the grandeur of a painted canyon. From the unspoken bond between human and pet, to the boisterous physicality of a Dixieland band. As close as Long Island and as far flung as Australia. "Get Out of Town" brings to your door, the world in both its familiar and exotic manifestations. Understand. These are not simply snapshot images of tourist attractions. In carved wood, oil, acrylic, watercolor, photography and mixed media,

"Get Out of Town" celebrates the beauty and excitement of sights and people in places we may long to visit. But in the eyes and faces and shapes of the foreign, and even domestic, we may see ourselves, and the universal.

More than a dozen artists participate in this first RAA group show of the New Year. Diane Ali has traveled the world from her home in New Jersey. She and her camera reveal to us the monumental colors of Arizona, the ornate cupids of a Roman fountain, the lyric line of Nova Scotia rowboats leading to forever, and the god-like stone face of the sun.

"Get Out of Town" will be on view from Saturday, January 19 through Sunday, February 17, 2008 in sTudio 6 Gallery, RoCA(Rockaway Center for the Arts), Fort Tilden, Queens. The opening reception is Sunday, January 20, 1-3 p.m. and will include refreshments and live entertainment. Admission to the exhibit and reception is free. Gallery hours are Saturdays 12 noon- 4 p.m., Sundays 1-4 p.m. and by appointment.

For the first time, the kidsmART After School Program opened its doors for the holiday season this year. On December 26, 27 and 28, this terrific program was able to serve many community families, who availed themselves of this "holiday bonus."

Check out the LaGuardia Performing Arts Center (LPAC) online at: www. lagcc.cuny.edu/lpac/. You may be surprised and very pleased at what you find. LPAC is located not so far away, in Long Island City along the number 7 train.

Part of La Guardia Community College, LPAC presents a richly diverse season of performing artists to satisfy a richly diverse college and community audience, and the community at large. It boasts professional artistic standards, community outreach and service, and low ticket prices.

Internationally recognized performers and local talent can be found on its two stages (one proscenium, the other thrust). There is a Jazz Jam Series, a Weekend Family Series of theatre, dance and music, the Schooltime Series, and the Lunchtime and Teatime Series of concerts, as well as a variety of other special events.

The center also offers an Arts Administration Certificate Program. LPAC makes its facilities available for rental to the public. A space grant program supports artists and companies from all five boroughs of New York by providing them with space, technical assistance and administrative support.

Among the performances scheduled for 2008 are the highly acclaimed Nai- Ni Chen Dance Company, which combines Chinese traditional dance with modern American dance; a Classical Theatre of Harlem production of "Romeo and Juliet" that is true to Shakespeare's text, but features West Indian Carnival costuming, soul, R&B and rap; a Jazz Workshop featuring saxophonist Kunal Singh; and open mic poetry nights featuring some very hip rhymsters.

LaGuardia Performing Arts Center is located at 31-10 Thomson Avenue. They may be contacted at: lpac@lagcc.cuny. edu or 718 482-5151.

CU@RoCA. FORT TILDEN HIGHLIGHTS:

(FREE) THURSDAY OPEN MIC MUSIC NIGHTS: Every Thursday at 7 p.m. in sTudio 7 Gallery, RoCA. Call the RAA office to schedule your spot at the mic.

(FREE) FRIDAY NIGHT IMPROV: Every Friday Night in sTudio 7 the improv group "No Shame Theater" performs and invites audience members to join in. Call RAA office to sign up.

PAINTING CLASSES FOR ADULTS: Tuesday nights, 7-9 p.m., Thursday mornings, 10 a.m. - 12 noon. sTudio 7, RoCA@ Fort Tilden. $15 per class, supplies included. Instructor: Geoff Rawling

"GET OUT OF TOWN": Locales and travel beyond Rockaway are explored. Exhibition dates: January 19-February 17, 2008. sTudio 6 Gallery, RoCA. Reception: Sunday, January 20, 1-3 p.m. Admission free.

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