2010-03-19 / Entertainment/Lifestyles

New Art Shows At Rockaway Artists Alliance Fort Tilden

“Reflections of Lost Memories,” photography, by Joseph Abbate “Reflections of Lost Memories,” photography, by Joseph Abbate Having successfully launched their exhibition year with Spanning Connections, the Rockaway Artists Alliance now showcases two new groupings of over 27 artists and their striking artworks with “To Our Idols” and “Bodies of Work.”

“To Our Idols” and “Bodies of Work” will be on view from Saturday, March 13 to Sunday, April 3, respectively in the sTudio 6 and sTudio 7 galleries at the Rockaway Center for the Arts (RoCA) at Fort Tilden.

“Bodies of Work” has invited each artist’s unique framework and talent in exploring and celebrating the oldest and most enduring artistic subject. The human body is represented here in all its phases, incarnations and views – clothed or unclothed, still or in motion, alone or in the context of groups, in any setting or background. “Bodies of Work” invokes all media to ‘pull back the curtain’ and reveal ourselves. Says “Bodies” artist Sandra Doore, from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, “It is the play between the beautiful and the ugly, the serious and the ridiculous and sensual and obscene that I find most intriguing…” Ms. Doore’s works, including “Anatomy of Drama,” make use of prefab clothing, thread, nylon and Plexiglas.

Adds painter Greg Evans of Camp Verde, Arizona, “The arts have a long tradition of exploring and reveling in the human form, removing the fa├žade and portraying the figure as it truly is – with its strengths and weaknesses. When viewed (like this) we are all the same – human, imperfect.” His oil on wood, “The Conversation,” is featured in the show.

In “To Our Idols” Dina Kaliko quotes her photo subject, Albert Einstein. Lettered above her dual imaged portrait are the words “Imagination is more important than knowledge.” Pursuing that idea, “To Our Idols” asks the bold and artful question: who is it that fires our imaginations? Who inspires and shapes us? Who do we look up to most? With depictions ranging from people, famous or not, to places to objects – contemporary, historical or fictional, each “Idol” artist seeks the creative answers to these questions. Using boldest strokes and humblest tones, this exhibition invites the viewer to become part of the exploration of this theme. Wood, watercolor and words, paint, pencil, pastel and photography are the media. Imagination is the spark.

“Bodies of Work” and “To Our Idols” artists include: Maureen McGuire, Karen Neuringer, Geoff Rawling, Daniella Sessa, Penelope Atheras, Joseph Abbate, Jerry Glick, Dan Guarino, Dina Kaliko, Martha Killian, MaryAnn McEvoy, Helene McGlynn, Jeffrey Berman, Julian Caso, Markus Curran, Sandra Doore, Greg Evans, John Festa, Jena Homsey, Audrey Irwin, Linda Kelly, Mary Meade, Jonas Mlenak, Ralph Petagna, Arthur Skowran, Yuri Yurov.

In April the Rockaway Artists Alliance will be welcoming “40 Shades of Green” with its emphasis not only on the many variations on the color green, but also the idea of renewal, reuse and all things recycled. The exhibition’s opening will also be tied into the City of New York’s Immigrant Heritage week. As part of the multitude of citywide events, the T-7 gallery will sport a giant wall-sized hand-created map of the world where artists and visitors alike are invited to make their mark and proclaim their point of origin.

In June the RAA will present “Left Brain/Right Brain,” an exploration in art of both our passionate and our logical natures, and a solo show by artist Susan DeCastro.

For years debates have centered on the functions of the right half of our brains (considered to control the artistic, instinctive aspects of our lives) and the logical, objective left half. Remember the book “Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain”? RAA invites both right brainiacs and left brainiacs to explore this intriguing, thought provoking issue. The result will fill the gallery for an equally interesting exhibit.

Gallery hours are Sunday and Saturday 12-4p.m. and by appointment. Admission to all exhibitions and events is free as is ample parking. For more information and directions call 718-474-0861,e-mail rockart116@aol- .com or visit www.rock-awayartistsalliance. 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.

Fort Tilden is an historic and now decommissioned U.S. Army post. Its entrance is located off Rockaway Point Boulevard across from Riis Landing, and near the entranceway to the the Marine Parkway Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge. Its nearest cross street is Beach 169 Street and it is also a few miles west of the Cross Bay Bridge. Fort Tilden is a premier part of Gateway National Recreation Area, a unique urban national park that spans several boroughs and incorporates beaches, marshlands and bird and wildlife refuges. Winter, summer, spring and fall its beaches, fields, trails and rich community and cultural offerings extend a fullness of life to all who would accept its welcome.

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