2011-02-04 / Columnists

From The Artists Studio

Final Weekend For ‘Reflections’
Commentary by Susan Hartenstein

To celebrate the sights and sounds of RAA and to mark the final day of the “Reflections” exhibition, John Simonelli, singer, guitarist and regular at RAA’s Thursday Open Mike Music Nights, has organized an all acoustic musical afternoon for Sunday, February 6. Starting at 2 p.m. in sTudio 6 Gallery, it will also feature veteran musician and mandolin player Vic LaMura, playing along with Simonelli, Mike Benedetto, Danny Mulvanerty, Dan Guarino and others. RAA musical events usually turn into cool jam sessions attracting some unexpected, but welcome musical performers, so be prepared for great music multiplied exponentially.

This is the final weekend to see “Reflections” in sTudio 6 Gallery in RoCA, Fort Tilden (see gray box for details). Watercolorist Martha Killian, has three paintings in the show. One of them, “Extreme Tide,” depicts the dramatic reflections created by a storm at sea. In November 2010 that storm’s very high tide broke through the dune line at the Breezy Point beach, covering it with large pools of water. Killian portrays the reflections she saw looking east and the contrast of the dark materials deposited by the waves with the beach’s golden yellow grasses.

At the next RAA general meeting (see Fort Tilden Highlights box) Dan Guarino will be portraying American president, statesman and naturalist Theodore Roosevelt. The portrait was originally presented by the Friends of Maple Grove Cemetery (don’t turn away) as part of their “Spirits Alive!” walking tour in October 2010. The original script was written by Carl Ballenas, a teacher at Immaculate Conception School whose students, among other accomplishments, published a number of history books. Guarino will be varying that script a bit to suit the audience and the venue. It will be interactive, engaging the audience, as though TR (as he was often called) himself is speaking to the audience members, bringing to life one of the most colorful and interesting figures in our history. Roosevelt was a man of boundless energy and interests. He had been sickly as a child but built himself up, becoming a hunter, explorer, author, naturalist, influential conservationist, politician, Nobel Prizewinning statesman and Medal of Honor soldier. Holding many positions in public office, including vice president and president, TR was a progressive Republican who eventually broke with the party to form the Bull Moose Party, under the banner of which he was the only third party candidate for president to place second in the election.

Guarino, for whom TR is a hero, says that both his parents instilled in him “the idea of history as a living thing, an ongoing story.” “It was a thrill, a pleasure and a humbling honor to be invited to help make a little bit of that history real and alive for those people.”

“Rockaway Artists Unframed” slideshow DVDs are now available for pickup and purchase at the RAA office. The exceptional exhibit of black and white photographic portraits by Yuri Yurov of the visual, literary, musical and performing artists who live and/or work on our peninsula can be picked up by those who pre-ordered it. But wait. Did you miss the exhibit in August? You’re in luck! You can see those timeless images on this DVD. Forgot to order it back then? No worries. You have a second chance to enjoy again and again. Contact the RAA office. Also inquire there about playback tips. Yurov writes, “I wish to thank you all for having been a part of this endeavor of mine, and I hope you enjoy the slideshow.” RAA CONTACT INFO:

Phone: 718-474-0861; Fax: 718-474- 4373; e-mail: info@raa116.org; website: www.rockawayartistsalliance.org

Fort Tilden Highlights PRESENT EXHIBITION: “Reflections,” in sTudio 6, Fort Tilden, RoCA (Rockaway Center for the Arts). Dates: through Feb. 6. Gallery hours: Sat. and Sun. 12-4 p.m. and by appointment. Free admission to exhibit and special events. NEXT RAA GENERAL MEETING: Mon., Feb. 14, 7:30 p.m. in sTudio 7 Gallery, RoCA. Featured guest: Dan Guarino performing his interpretation of Theodore Roosevelt. See column. NEXT RAA EXHIBIT: “The Life of Still Objects,” explores the motion and emotion in the world of objects that may be still but never static. On view February 19 – March, 27. NEXT RAA WRITERS GROUP MEETING: Sunday, February 20, 4-6 p.m. in sTudio 6 Gallery. PAINTING CLASSES FOR ADULTS: “Painting With Geoff Rawling”: Tues. 7-9 p.m., Thurs. 10 a.m.-12 noon. sTudio 6. $20 per class, supplies included. THURS. NIGHT OPEN MIC: Performing artists of all disciplines invited. sTudio 7 stage. Sign-up: 7:45 p.m. Start time: 8 p.m. Join us. Free.

kidsmART corner

The kidsmART After-School Program 2010-2011 is free. Location: Building T-149, Fort Tilden. Dates and times: through April 14, 2011; Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays; 3:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. On-site registration is available. Applications can also be downloaded from RAA’s Website: www.rockawayartistsalliance.org .

For information call RAA at 718- 474-0861.

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