2008-09-19 / Community

ARTSPLASH Talent Showcase Comes to Fort Tilden

Just as September weaves together the excitement of summer with the dazzle of color that is fall, the Rockaway Artists Alliance brings to its Fort Tilden galleries ARTSplash 2008. Combining the work of over 40 visual artists from across the spectrum, ARTSplash 2008 presents a tour de force of sculpture, photography, painting, drawing, assemblage, poetry, digital imaging, words, watercolor, stained glass, music, and mixed media.

Spread out over the sTudio 6 and sTudio 7 galleries and the outdoor sculpture back garden, this exhibition offers an artist's palette full of color and mood and brings the expression of art to life. Add to this mix dozens of performers who will bring distinctive dance, words, music and drama to both the indoor T- 7 stage and the open air Moonstage and ARTSplash becomes an event that explores the arts in all directions.

As the largest exhibition of the year, ARTSplash is noted for showcasing not only local talents of all kinds, but also presenting artists from across the country and from different parts of the world. Out of the hundreds of pieces submitted, works were accepted from artists as far and wide as Encinitas, California and Blackpool, England. A number of artists here are showing their work for the first time, and for some this is their first presentation to a New York audience.

The work itself runs the gamut from the ethereal oil on canvas of Yuri Yurov's "Madonna" to the echo of unexamined everyday objects in photographer Marvin Schwartz' "Rusty Lock." Then there are the warm colors and lines of Penelope Athera's paired works "A Window in Greece" and "A Window in Sante Fe" juxtaposed with the image, music and motion of Apryl Green's inviting and viewable art. ARTSplash takes the viewer on a trip from as far away as China and the north of England to right next door. It also reaches from the inner human heart to the outward curve of the world.

Representing the performing arts will be a host of musicians, actors, singers, and spoken word artists. The opening reception had appearances by Breezy Grass, Hudson's Hope and the Silly Dilly Band. Taking the stage early in the proceedings, the Silly Dilly Band offered music, sketches, dance and fun that invites in families and appeals to all ages.

On Saturday, September 27, the musician locally known as Sticker Dude, and friends will be performing between 1 and 4 p.m. as part of the Gallery Sitter's Event series. Other performances and happenings are in the works for ARTSplash and details will be announced as they are available.

Reprising their successful and moving Rockaway debut will be the Brooklyn based acting troupe Dzieci as they and RAA present "Makbet" a mesmerizing gypsy retelling of Shakespeare's ageless Macbeth in sTudio 7 (donation is suggested.) Doors open at 7:45 p.m. on Saturday September 20 and the play beings at 8 p.m. There will be a second performance on Friday evening, October 10. For more information on Dziece please visit http://www. dziectheatre. org.

Like its predecessor which last year attracted more than 300 people to its opening, ARTSplash 2008 got off to a rousing start with a reception filled with color, sight, sound, refreshments, good company as well as special presentations and attendance by many of the artists.

Whether discovering this vibrant group for the first time or coming back to be intrigued by its ever changing array of exhibitions, the Rockaway Artists Alliance extends its hands in invitation to all to come to its galleries and be immersed in the arts. It is a show of talent and imagination you won't soon forget.

Gallery hours are Saturday 12-4 p.m., Sunday 1-4 p.m., and by appointment. Gallery admission and all events are free, as is parking.

For further information on exhibitions, events, meetings and directions please call 718-474-0861 or visit http://www. rockawayartistsalliance.org.

RAA works in partnership with the National Park Service at Gateway National Recreation Area and in part is supported by NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, JP Morgan Chase, The Independence Community Foundation, and Brooklyn Brewery.

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