This Winter, Alfa Art Gallery is proud to host the New Brunswick Art Salon’s Photography Exhibition entitled “Shifted Nature.” For ten years, the New Brunswick Art Salon at the Alfa Art Gallery has been a vital part of the local art scene and culture. This seasons exhibition includes several renowned artists including Tricia Miho, Harold Olejarz, Gwyneth Green, Danielle Austen, and many more!
“Shifted Nature” hopes to shine a light upon the artists that have excelled in the medium of photography, a well-known and diverse form of art enjoyed all over the world.
As per our new normal as a nation, Alfa Art Gallery is also proud to present a virtual version of this exhibition that will be displayed simultaneously alongside the physical exhibition at the gallery itself. This fully-interactive online experience will allow visitors to explore and be engaged by these pieces from the comfort and safety of their own homes. Take the gallery experience online with the “Shifted Nature” virtual gallery showcase—be sure not to miss it!
Exhibition duration: February 2nd through March 26th, 2021
Virtual Reception: Friday, February 5th, 2021 at 6:30pm
Drop-off Dates: January 26th through January 30th, 2021
Hosted by artsteps.com, the “Shifted Nature” virtual exhibition will be available from February 2nd through March 26th.
Shifted Nature Virtual Opening Reception
Anisa Rahim wears many hats, one as a photographer, one as a writer, and one as a public interest lawyer. Living and working abroad gave her the opportunity to snap photos of ordinary people wherever she went, accumulating two decades worth of stunning material. Inspired by Henri Carter Bresson and her photography mentor, Leandre Jackson, Rahim views photography as fine art, which she combines with her creative writing. She has a BA from University of Chicago, JD from Temple Beasley School of Law, and MFA from Rutgers-Newark University. Along with being a Voices of Our Nation alumni, Rahim was a PANK Book Contest Finalist for her hybrid memoir and has exhibited her photography throughout the tri-state area. She is a 2020 Artist in Residence at SMUSH Gallery.
Arik Gorban was eleven years old when he first started processing black-and-white film. Since then, his abilities have only been honed by his 40+ year career as a fine art photographer, both in his refined technical skills and through the development of his creative process. He has spent decades experimenting and closing the gap between what is possible with a camera and digital editing, and what he envisions in his mind’s eye. He puts special focus on the creative, but does so without neglecting the technical aspects of the photography discipline. The same care goes into his editing process, which he utilizes to finalize his vision and provide a completed piece.
Brad Terhune crafts weird worlds through his collages, something he has done since childhood. A northern New Jersey-based artist, he embraces the influences of 20th century Surrealist influence in creating portals into his strange realms, often imbued with the powerful subjects of politics and social justices. His collages incorporate a plethora of materials, like historic photographs, and other disciplines, like printmaking. His paintings, meanwhile, represent a dialogue between creator and canvas, with Terhune asking himself how and why the image develops as it does; this is the soul of these pieces, which are ‘about’ exactly what the viewer sees. He majored in Illustration at the School of Visual Arts in the 80’s and obtained a BA in Art Education from Montclair State University. Along with creating new works, he serves as an art educator for Clark Public Schools and an Instructor at Zimmerli Art Museum’s Summery Art Camp. He frequently exhibits in the New York-New Jersey area and is featured in collections in Japan, England, France and elsewhere in the United States.
Chee Bravo reflects rich and diverse environments inhabited by vibrant and soulful individuals through her portraits. Her background as a printmaker and career as graphic designer informs her creative process, first putting together digital collages with photography and computer manipulation, and then transferring the piece onto canvas with acrylics and silk-screening. While her life began in Trinidad and Tobago in the West Indies, her journey began in the New York subways, capturing performers in their element. Her interests have only grown, with a trip to Havana, Cuba inspiring a series on reflecting people’s cultural, religious, and political beliefs. Her current focus lies with the local performers of her hometown, Trenton, New Jersey. She holds a BFA in printmaking from Florida International University and numerous awards, including the Betty Laird Award and Addy Award. Her works can be found publicly in the permanent collections of Trenton City Museum, Florida International University, the Brooklyn Art Library, the Printmaking Center of New Jersey, as well as featured in exhibitions throughout the tri-state area and abroad.
Danielle Austen is a photographer and an environmentalist trained in the fine arts, having received her BFA from Cornell University. Additionally, she attended the master’s program at the Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications with an emphasis in studying photojournalism, but not before spending 7 years as a graphic designer among a number of other artistic endeavors. Today she presents her collection of photographs featuring warm organic imagery that could only be designed by the majesty of the natural world and captured by the steady hand of a seasoned photographer. Devoted to the land and her craft, Austen focuses on bodies of water. Easily overlooked brooks and streams are transformed into spiritual waterfronts while intertwining their fluidity and ever-fluctuating form to match the possibility of viewer interpretation. Her work is overflowing with reflective and meditative potential.
Frederick Ballet has always been enamored with the natural world, a source of existential fascination and peaceful solitude. While the Brooklyn native initially pursued a medical career as a hand surgeon, retirement allowed him to renew his passion in photography. In 2018, he became the first student to earn the Contemporary Practices Photography Certificate from Philadelphia Photo Arts Center and has since had his work displayed at shows, galleries and businesses, a long way from snapping pictures of zoo animals with an Olympus camera. Ballet captures images of the beach at various times in the day and year, balancing realism and abstraction by anchoring viewers to the shore and then inviting them to contemplate the colors and calmness of the ocean. He hopes viewers walk away with the same sentiments that resound in him after gazing upon the natural majesty, “a meditative sense of beauty, peace, and timelessness.”
George Mattei captures the beauty of the Jersey Shore through the High Dynamic Range technique, a process that imitates how the human eye gazes upon a scene. Rather than taking a single exposure, Mattei sets up a tripod and obtains three to nine exposures at varying light levels and tones, then combines them into one image. In preserving details that would have otherwise been overlooked, Mattei elevates everything beautiful about the landscapes and seascapes he photographs, resulting in an immersive viewing experience. A graduate of the School of Visual Arts, Mattei creates photography for art and commercial purposes and is currently working at Helen Hayes Rehabilitation Hospital, using his photography as a mode for wellness and inspiration. His photos are featured for businesses’ promotional materials and at galleries and exhibitions throughout New Jersey.
Gwyneth Green is an artist who uses the camera and the written word. A published poet with a BA in Fairleigh Dickenson University, Green participated in ekphrastic collaborations with visual artists. Approaching the synergic nature of the word and the image fascinated her, her piqued interest encouraging her to wed her poems with her photographs. Her careful use of color and focus mimics imaginative prose as it guides viewers through the scene. She has fifteen poetic publications and has been featured in exhibitions in the mid-Atlantic region as well as virtual ones.
Harold Olejarz invites viewers to peer through a kaleidoscope in his circular-constructed pieces. His career began in 3D as a sculptor, earning a BA from Brooklyn College and MFA from Pratt Institute and participating actively in the Soho cooperative gallery movement. By the 80’s, he’d adapted his sculptures to be wearable and incorporate performance into his art, and in the 90’s explored digital imaging to capture the ‘performances’ of objects on a digital scanner. His present work looks beyond the typical rectangular confines of the frame and instead creates circular, collaged images consisting of repeating, rotating slices reminiscent of a pinwheel or mandala. This invites viewers to focus on relationships of the images and reveal intricate and delightful patterns. He has participated in solo and group exhibitions and performances throughout the United States, as well as participated in reviews nationally and internationally.
Kay Kenny shows silent statues witness societal descent and environmental vulnerability. Currently a photography teacher at New York University and the International Center of Photography in New York City, Kenny is deeply rooted in the fine art world. Her education includes a BFA from Syracuse University, MA from Rutgers University, and MFA from Syracuse University, while her resume includes work in photography, painting, and published critique. Her Stone Goddess series takes Greek and Roman sculptures from the Metropolitan Museum and places them elsewhere in the United States, acting as avatars of the past watching what humanity’s whims have wrought. Her work has been exhibited in in the Eastern United States and Taiwan, and, in 2004, she co-curated the exhibit “Manifestations: Photographs of Men” at the Southeast Museum of Photography in 2004.
Linda Troeller is a renowned and award-winning photographer who has dedicated the majority of her artistic career to personal, women’s and social issues. Her latest work, “Personal Opera,” tackles subjects she has been exploring for most of her career, such as gender, humanity, emotion and aura. She has refined her ability to capture the human body, arranging the human body to best promote these questions of truth and self. Her portraits dare to delve beneath the surface and face the questions of personhood. There is no subject she will shy away from, and the confidence is palpable. She is the star of her “Personal Opera.”
Lothar Troeller’s “Children of the fire” is a series reflecting Troeller’s personal journey through crisis and destiny that is physically formed by not only the elements of the earth but by the conscious mind that guides them. The German American artist and photographer whose exhibition work spans over multiple decades and continents, now invites us to observe his Children of the Fire with introspective intent. His visually diverse yet equally striking works are simultaneously vibrant and painful. The raw and heartbreaking series is charged with a sense of perseverance in the face of adversity. The scorched surface gives way to new beginnings, as hardships often do.
Mark Chernin uses his photography to evoke an emotional response in his viewers. His love of photography began while he was in college in the 1960’s, a period of social upheaval in the United States that used photography to demonstrate the political activism and national debate the country was experiencing. As he continued to study art, he discovered the paintings of the Hudson River School and was moved by the artists abilities to capture the luminous qualities of light, tonality and saturation. Over the last six decades, Chernin has been able to study with prominent photographers, and display his work in national juried fine art photography exhibitions along with several of his own solo exhibitions. Most recently, Mark won a First Place in his category at the First Annual National Arts Competition at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (2011).
Melchi Dompreh’s photographs, like his poetry, hope to express his heart’s sentiments and stir up emotions and feelings viewers can empathize with. Dompreh is native to Flushing, Queens, New York, but moved to Edison, New Jersey in 2004. He graduated from Middlesex Country Vocational and Technical Schools with a focus on Architecture Technology in 2013. He began to take photography seriously in March of 2016, as a way to visually express what he had written in his poems. By the end of Summer 2017, Dompreh started to work with film, and in 2019 his work began to be shared on Instagram. Dompreh is currently working on a transforming his poetic journal, ’Loud Whispers,’ to film. This work will explore the turbulent years that marked his teenage years and early adulthood, that many face. He recently was one of five artists awarded the Moment x Willem Verbeeck Grant, and is developing his own website.
Michael Yacovino passed away nearly two decades ago, but his work is still as powerful as ever. It is able to embody the capabilities of art, in whichever medium it may present itself, to evolve and metamorphose in perpetuity. Yavocino received his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the Mason Gross School of Art in 1986, and had several dalliances with fashion design. Yacovino’s work juxtaposes the familiar with the ambiguous, and presents a commentary on objectification.
Tricia Miho is an Argentinian, self-taught artist who was destined to be an artist from birth. Her family is filled with talented artist and craftsman, and her grandfather was even an esteemed Italian jewelry designer. She received a formal education in music with a Baccalaureate degree along with a Masters in Law and Social Sciences, along with received British Royal Academies awards in painting, watercolor and drawing. Her work was characterized by an inimitable artistic style influenced by the surrealist visions of Giorgio De Chirico, and the detail-rich cityscapes depicted by Pieter Bruegel. Miho currently resides in the United States, is regularly featured in exhibitions, and has been experimenting with photography as a means of manipulating and creating new ideas.
About Alfa Art Gallery:
Alfa Art Gallery is a non-profit organization devoted to the discovery, growth, and support of emerging and established artists within the art community. Since establishment, Alfa Art has conducted multiple shows featuring local, national, and international artists and various materials including oil color, water color, mixed media, sculptures, photography, crafts and glass works. As an open art studio – gallery, Alfa’s exhibiting artists are welcomed to demonstrate their creative process in the space provided, while collectors and visitors are capable to learn and follow the artists’ technique, style and motivations. Additionally, Alfa plays a vital role among local to national visual arts organizations by supporting and presenting artists’ works, and functions as a space for interdisciplinary art and criticism. Each season, Alfa invites professional art curators to provide criticism and guidance to artists and artworks on display which helps collectors and visitors to identify a style of artwork that expresses their personal or company image and purpose.
NBAS’2021 is sponsored by:
With the assistance of grants from organizations such as Amboy Bank, Magyar Bank, Johnson & Johnson, New Brunswick City Center, Middlesex Country Cultural and Heritage Commission, Bristol Myers Squibb, and Pfizer Inc. Alfa Art is confident that all who come to the 2020 Oil Painting New Brunswick Art Salon will leave with a greater appreciation of the arts and the gallery’s showcasing of a variety of artists.