Reverberations II

Reverberations II

Date posted: 2012-02-07 11:08:54

On Friday, February 10, 2012 from 5-8:00pm, there will be an Opening Reception for REVERBERATIONS II, an art exhibition to honor Black History Month, held at the Shelnutt Gallery in RPI's Union, Troy, NY.

At 7:00pm, Dr. Ade Knowles and his group ENSEMBLE CONGEROS, comprised of RPI students and alumns, will give a performance.

The participating artists will be present to discuss their work with RPI students and guests of the gallery.  The public is also invited to attend.  Refreshments will be served.

This exhibition to honor Black History Month has been co-sponsored by the Black Students Alliance at RPI for many years, and the artists welcome their interest and support.  Jackie Allen, president of the BSA, is in charge of publicity on campus for this exhibit.

Mary Udell, curator of art exhibitions at the Shelnutt Gallery says, "We are proud to welcome Ade Knowles and his percussionists once again to return to our gallery to perform their Afro-Cuban, African and American Jazz Music.  The exciting and vibrant contemporary art on the walls provides a stimulating background for this original music."

REVERBERATIONS II continues through March 22, 2012.  Gallery hours are Sundays from Noon-3pm.  For all other days of the week, please call to confirm gallery availability - 518.276.6505.

Participating artist bios:

FEMI J. JOHNSON returns to the Shelnutt to honor Black History Month at RPI by popular demand. All delight in his exuberant collages. Created mostly by placing torn paper shapes and mixed media materials with overlays of paint and paper, resulting in abstract constructions. He uses reproduced images from the media within the ethnic domain, matched by the reality of daily life in neighborhoods where he has resided. Johnson says, "My art is influenced by the late Romaire Bearden and John Biggers. I was trained in mechanical drafting in high school and poured my creative energy into ink and pencil works." In 2002, after a move to Troy, New York. he studied for two years at Hudson Valley Community College with a major in art from 2006-07. It was there he began his interest in collage. His collage, "JAZZ TONIGHT is now in their collection. In 2010 and 2011 Femi Johnson was one of the three featured exhibitors curated by Mary Udell in the 'Operation Unite's Annual "Black Arts Summer Festival" held under the big white tent at the Henry Hudson Waterfront Park on the shores of the Hudson River in Hudson, New York.  Johnson was born in NYC, moved to Pennsylvania where he was educated, returning back to NY for several years . He is currently residing in his hometown near Allentown, Pennsylvania: An emerging arts community!

GREGORY COATES, born in Washington, DC, was educated at the Corcoran School of Artin DC: the Kunst Academie Dusseldorf in Germany and the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Maine. In 2010, Coates was invited to Obama City, a UNESCO National Heritage Site, in Japan to create an installation sculpture for their new sculpture park. Obama City, population 34,000, is a fishing village on the Wakasa Bay quite close to Kyoto. "The sculpture we created was "OBAMA CITY 39'", a rubber on wood work in 6 sections, 12.8 ft. x 11.8 ft. This piece was created to be shown on the floor - or hung on a wall or even hung on the ceiling." Coats says, " While there, we stayed in a 1000 year old residence, formerly a 'Geisha House' in the historic area of this small city. I invited two fellow sculptors from the US to work with me on this project. We worked in many schools in Japan inspiring numerous young people, introducing them to unusual forms of art, allowing them to experiment on their own on art with environmental roots." He adds , "My work is about the pursuit of line, color and texture. I will explore this process with anything that is unorthodox as traditional material." There are two small (10" x 12") painted rubber constructions in this show at RPI. "Collage for Chamberlain" painted silver, inspired by the crushed steel sculpture of the late John Chamberlain and "Collage After Nevelson", painted black, inspired by the late Louise Nevelson. They are painted with acrylic and glued to make a wall relief. Coates has had numerous exhibitions and is in many public and private collections, including: the Studio Museum of Harlem/Artist in Residence 1996-97; AVA Gallery, Capetown South Africa; the Opalka Gallery at Sage College in Albany, NY; the Vermont Studio Center, 'Critics Grant'1991; John and Eleanor C. Clark French Endowment. While at the Studio Museum in Harlem's prestigious 'Artist One Year Residency' program, he delighted in inspiring the youth of the Harlem community. Galleries include; Tachaeles Gallery in Berlincscs, Germany; Bonami Gallery in San Francisco and the Porter Troupe Gallery, both in California. Gregory Coates currently resides in Allentown PA with his wife Kiki, a professional arts curator. They have founded two arts organizations in Allentown.

BRIAN JONES was born and grew up in Syracuse, New York. He is a 2011 graduate of RPI; School of Humanities, Electronic Media, Arts and Communications, emac. He says, "I was introduced to the opportunity to see another side of Troy through my Arts Community and Technology class. The class is taught by Branda Miller, who also runs the Sanctuary for Independent Media. By working with Branda and The Sanctuary, I was able to document everything through photography. The documentation started off as being just for a grade, slowly turning into a passion for photo-documentary. Before I knew it, I had a picture in the Albany Times Union and I was telling a story. My thanks to 'The Sanctuary for Independent Living', 'the Missing Link', 'Troy Bike Rescue' and the 'Collard City Growers' for inspiring me".  "This small body of photographs, "Diamonds of Troy" represents the City of Troy from ground level as opposed to the aerial view from RPI. These photographs capture in a way which is rarely seen by Rensselaer students." Brian is currently working in the Albany region.  Mary Udell says, "Just to know Brian Jones, one is filled with a wonderful feeling for the future of our country. The Shelnutt Gallery will be having a unique exhibition starting in early May of "The Sanctuary for Independent Living" and the interrelationship between the students and professors of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, the Sanctuary of Independent Media and group of residents of 6th Avenue, just one block north of RPI, Branda Miller and her husband, Steve Pierce - both professors at RPI led the effort to purchase this old church and have made this project all happen and grow and touch so many lives. Noted photographer, Elie Markovich, will show her award winning photographs of this effort."

CHRISTINA MALISOFF was born and grew up in New York City. She studied art at Columbia Greene Community College and Bard College. She moved permanently several years ago to the Columbia / Dutchess region of New York State and gets her inspiration from this beautiful environment. Christina currently lives and maintains her studio in Hudson, NY. When not painting she is at work as a Program Director at the Hudson Opera House Arts Workshops and as an announcer/interviewer at the new radio station WGXC serving the Hudson/Catskill region. Christina says, "In this series of works, I used oil pastel and graphite on birch veneer plywood. I wanted to create small scale works which would allow me to work on a relatively quick and direct way. My intention was to create works that are accessible and fun referencing nature and science. They also reflect my connection to the psychedelic 60's. My influence in both art and science is from my father." Christina Malisoff's meticulous small paintings, 5" x 6", were shown at the annual 'Black Arts Festival' at the Henry Hudson Waterfront Park to the delight of the arts loving public. This festival is sponsored by 'Operation Unite' of Hudson and directed by Elena and Greg Mosley. Mary Udell has assisted them in organizing the 'Arts Tent' since 2009.

DOUGLAS SHIPPEE was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and moved to St. Paul, Minnesota 1981. In 1983, he travelled east to Maine and studied at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. He received a BFA degree from the University of Minnesota in 1981. In 1983 he travelled east to Maine and studied at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. He attended the Indiana University in Bloomington and graduated with an MFA degree. He moved to Brooklyn where he met his wife, Lynn Francis, who shares his love of art. In his artist's statement, Doug Shippee says, "My work has always concerned the melding of abstraction and figuration. For many years I was an abstract painter although in recent years purely abstract painting has held no satisfaction for me. These small works on paper begin with a hypnotic and painstaking rendering of a pattern or patterns on the paper.These can be a series of spirals or dashes or squiggles. This "underpainting serves as a primer and a sort of ghost layer under the final layers of mostly transparent paint. Often as I am painting these early layers, images of figures appear to me and are then enhanced and elaborated on. More often than not these figures disappear back into the painting as they become overworked or labored., This continues to build the texture and ephemeral qualities of the painting. My recent previous work has been in oil on a much larger scale. The search for imagery has been similarly laborious and time consuming on these large scale pieces.  My hope is to translate some of these small scale images into larger scale oil on canvas works thereby retaining the Immediacy of the images without laboring so heavily on their behalf. Wish me luck!"

SERGIO GONZALEZ-TORNERO was born in Santiago, Chile in the late 1920's. He says, "During most of my childhood and youth I lived in many countries because my father was in the Chilean foreign service. Ever since I can remember I have been looking at art and making drawings. The resolution to become an 'artist' came to me in 1947 while I was studying at the California Institute of Technology. I dropped out of college and traveled extensively throughout Europe." He enrolled at the Slade School of Fine Arts in London and then went on to the S.W. Hayter Atelier in Paris, France where he perfected the art of intaglio printmaking. While there met a charming and very talented young art student, Adrienne Cullum, from Atlanta, Georgia. He moved to the United States in 1962, where he and Adrienne married, bought a small house and settled in Putnam County, N.Y. and created their studios there for many years. They continued to participate in exhibitions in the New York State region and added paintings to his printmaking work. In 2004, he was invited to have a solo exhibition at the Bienenale of Latin American and Caribbean Prints in the San Juan Museum in Puerto Rico. One summer in the mid 1990's Sergio and Adrienne travelled to the Pacific Northwest. They became immersed in the culture of Haida Gawaii, 'Land of the Haida'. Located in the Queen Charlotte Islands, an archipelago 100 miles off the coasts of British Columbia and the United States. Sergio and Adrienne return there every summer visiting and living amonst the 'Haida" who are a people with an epic and sometimes tragic history, a natural genius in their creative work in art, and a vast and rich oral literature. He has painted many, many paintings 'mostly red' of this culture and the people of it. In 2001, he had an exhibit in the Shelnutt Gallery at RPI of twenty of these paintings, titled MOSTLY RED, which were based on hiistoric Aboriginal Art of the Northwest Coast of North America. In 2011, Sergio was invited to have a major retrospective at the venerable arts institution 'The Silvermine School of Arts Gallery' in Fairfield County, Connecticut. Sergio Gonzalez Tornero's work is in the Museum of Modern Art , the Brooklyn Museum, the New York Public Library and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City collections. In addition the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the National Museum of Fine Arts in Chile, the National Gallery in Warsaw and the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris, France. In 1990, he received the Gottleib Foundation Grant. In addition he has had exhibits at the Museum of Northern British Columbia, Prince Rupert, Canada; Gallery of Tribal Art in Vancouver, Canada; the Haida Gwaii Museum at Qay 'Ilnagaay, Skidegate, Queen Charlotte Islands, Canada and the National Museum of Fine Arts in Chile.

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