2009-09-25 / Entertainment/Lifestyles

ARTSplash 2009 Adds Special Events to Exhibition

ARTSplash 2009, the current exhibition from the Rockaway Artists Alliance, continues to bring out the best in all of the arts. The first week of October will see additions to the showcase in the form of a dance group, an interactive opera company, a printmaking presentation, and an RAA Writers Group performance event. Admission is free, as is parking, and all events are scheduled to take place in and around the RAA's sTudio 7 and sTudio 6 galleries at Fort Tilden in the Rockaways. ARTSplash is scheduled to run until Sunday, October 11. InkSplash, a companion exhibition of print works, will be on view until Sunday, November 1. Admission to both galleries is free.

Saturday, October 3 will offer a celebration of both exhibitions as the art of dance and the art of printmaking are presented. At 1 p.m., Mari Meade, Breanna Gribble, and Amanda Hinchley will be performing in conjunction with ARTSplash. Dancer Mari Meade, who is currently in the Keenan Performing Arts Fellowship program at the Lincoln Center Institute, recently performed a dance piece for Rockaway's "Paint Out." The boardwalk event brought 70 to 80 people of all ages out to the shore for a brush with painting seascapes. Meade has also just signed on to the upcoming "Poetry in Motion" project.

Also sharing the Saturday spotlight will be InkSplash's own printmaking presentation starting at 2 p.m. in T-6. "We decided to mix the two events," says curator Christian Le Gars. "These international artists [in InkSplash] are some of the best print masters in the world, most of them in museum collections, including yours truly, and [they] represent an array of marvelous printmaking techniques. Ours will be a presentation on the print medium, and the techniques and methods utilized … in the show."

A full printmaking workshop conducted by teacher and printmaster Elizabeth Harington is also planned, with a date to be announced shortly. Sunday, October 4 will be enlivened by an infusion of artistic energy as the Rockaway Artists Alliance Writers Group brings its first public performance presentation to the T-7 stage. Three short plays by Mary Najeddine, Maureen McNelis, and Liz Guarino are scheduled to be performed. Short stories written and read by Martha Killian and Stephen Schaikowitz, a story by Carolyn Rushefsky, and poetry and original music by Dan Guarino are also scheduled. Actors will include Mary Beth Callahan, Susan Hartenstein, Tom Burke, Geoff Rawling and Jim Killian. Starting at 1:30 p.m., the program consists of a mix of writing, both drama and comedy.

The RAA Writers Group, approaching its one year mark, hosts monthly meetings at which writers of all kinds and those interested in writing can exchange ideas, share their work and develop their writing. Like all of RAA it welcomes artists of all types. Its members include filmmakers, musicians, journalists, poets, prose writers, novelists, actors, performers, playwrights and more.

"We're very excited about the Sunday event," said Susan Hartenstein. "We're looking forward to sharing with people what we've been enjoying and been enriched by for so long. Everyone's invited!"

In keeping with the spirit of reaching out and including all the arts, the Rockaway Artists Alliance will host an ensemble interactive opera group on one of the last Sundays of October. Date and time will be announced.

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, e-mail rockart116@aol.com or visit www.rockawayartistsalliance.org.

The doors are open, the 'curtain' is up and the Rockaway Artists Alliance invites everyone to experience the arts, both performing and visual, in a whole new way.

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