2008-05-02 / Columnists

From The Artists Studio Rockaway Artists Alliance

May 4 Poetry Event; "Black And White" And Shades Of…
Commentary by Susan Hartenstein

Monarch" Artist: Mary Beth Brunner. Medium: Photography, cur- rently on view in the exhibit Black & White in sTudio 7. Monarch" Artist: Mary Beth Brunner. Medium: Photography, cur- rently on view in the exhibit Black & White in sTudio 7. A special Gallery Sitter's spoken word event is taking place this Sunday, May 4 in sTudio 7 Gallery, 1-4 p.m. Hosted by poet and visual artist Shirl Holt, the afternoon will feature various wellrespected invited writers reading their own poetry and short prose, as well as an open mic. Some of the scheduled poets appeared at a poetry event hosted by Holt several months ago in the RAA gallery. The list of writers will also include a few RAA members. Please join us for an afternoon of words and images.

Sunday's reception for the newest RAA exhibits, "Of Women," "Black and White" and "The Human Figure," was a successful, very well attended and received official kick-off for all three.

Sophia Skeans, the curator for "Of Women" who put so much passion and creative imagination into the exhibit, wrote these words of thanks for this week's column:

My deepest heartfelt appreciation goes out to all the women and men, who contributed to the successful day at RAA, for their outstanding assistance with "Of Women," and to all who generously dedicate their time and effort to RAA. Bravo to Penelope, Janet, Geoff, Judd, Tommy, Nancy, Ruth, Madeline, Matt and RTC, Stephanie and all at the RAA office staff, and the wonderful musicians, Jenna and Danny, and Joe, my family, friends from NAF, Wendy, Denise, Robert, Jenny and to the most important person, my husband Pat, who always comes through! And Susan for your lovely words that truly express the artist's viewpoint and to Gateway National Recreation Area and the community-at-large that support RAA's mission. Love, Sophia.

"Black and White" celebrates the range of values, textures and dramatic contrasts achievable in the world between black and white, with stops along the way at blue-gray and sepia; in photography, watercolor, pen and ink, acrylic paint, charcoal, graphite, etching and printmaking. Among the pleasures of this exhibit, we discover some surprises from artists we thought we knew.

Mary Meade, who has been so impressive of late in her refreshingly 'innocent' oils, demonstrates her versatility and her unique visual approach in the etching, "Sunflowers." It is multi-layered in meaning and content, variety of strokes, markings and tools used. The pen and ink, "Skateboarding Fun" expresses the gloriously disjointed, tumbling freedom of that pursuit as practiced by three young aficionados.

Jessica Schulman, long known to RAA for her imaginative digitally manipulated photography, reveals herself as a splendid graphic artist in three pen and ink drawings of urban New York and the seafaring, "Brooklyn." In a wonderful touch of spontaneity, instructor Geoff Rawling has, in a deceptively nonchalant manner, hung some of the best sketches of students in his Thursday night life drawing class. What a marvelous way of pulling together "Black and White" and "The Human Figure," both displayed in one flowing line, through sTudio 7 Gallery.

Deadline for RAA's next exhibit is May 16, 2008. "Good & Plenty" - best work by RAA artists revisited, a member auction.

CU@RoCA.

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

Forth Tilden Highlights

THREE RAA EXHIBITS ON VIEW: "Of Women," "Black and White" and "The Human Figure" Exhibition dates: Through Sunday, May 20; Location: sTudio 6 Gallery and sTudio7 Gallery, RoCA @ Fort Tilden, GNRA. Gallery hours: Saturdays 12-4 p.m., Sundays 1-4 p.m. and by appointment. Free admission. SPECIAL GALLERY EVENT: Sunday, May 4, 1-4 p.m. Poetry reading and open mic in sTudio 7 Gallery. Free. All welcome. (FREE) THURSDAY OPEN MIC MUSIC NIGHTS: Every Thursday, 8 p.m.-12 a.m. at 7 p.m. in sTudio 7 Gallery, RoCA. Jamming with great local and non-local musicians and singers; open mic. LIFE DRAWING CLASS with live model. Every Thursday, 8- 10 p.m. in sTudio 6 Gallery, RoCA @ Fort Tilden. Fee: $20 per class. No pre-registration necessary. Instructor: Geoff Rawling 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 FRIDAY NIGHT IMPROV: "No Shame Theater" performs theater games, improvised scenes based on written works; all invited to join in. ROCKAWAY THEATRE COMPANY: The musical, "Annie." Performances: May 2, 3, 9, 10, 16, 17 at 8 p.m.; special Mother's Day benefit performance May 11 at 2 p.m., proceeds to North Shore Animal League of America. May 4 and 11 matinees sold out. Reserve tickets ASAP: 718-850-2450. Directors: Kathy Valentine and Frank Caiati; Musical Director: Anne Ribold.

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