New Jersey Artists Visits Local Art Gallery

By Franchesca Maniscalco, Class of 2018

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Photo By Franchesca Maniscalco

For those trying to escape the bleak and rainy weather, a small gallery located on Bowers Street opened its doors to the locals so they come in and look at various art pieces on display.

The Visualize Artist Talk was held on Sunday, Oct. 29 at the 107 Bowers Gallery & ArtSpace in the Heights in Jersey City. The artist talk was a part of the Visualize exhibition, which began on Oct. 7.  From 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., two of the artists who had their artwork up on display came in and talked about their art styles.

Donna Greenberg, a Jersey City-born artist has been creating art for over 40 years. She has used different art mediums and explained why she constantly changes mediums.

“Whatever that is expressing my desires and my thoughts at the time usually guides the medium,” said Greenberg.

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Photo by Franchesca Maniscalco

Greenberg also talked about her current works about her current works, including her sculptures using .using polymer clay. Polymer clay is a fairly new art material that has been around since the 1930s under the name Fimo. Greenberg explained that polymer clay is different from other clays.

“It’s a moldable clay, but it is not like ceramic clay. It doesn’t go into a kiln, it goes to an oven at 300 degrees Fahrenheit where it turns from a clay form to a more solid form,” said Greenberg.

Her artwork on display has an under-the-sea vibe with the coral sculptures that were made from polymer. Greenberg explained that she enjoys that organic quality in her artwork and that nature is her guide.

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Photo by Franchesca Maniscalco

“It’s not that I’m trying to capture a mushroom or a piece of coral, but grab something from it that speaks to me,” said Greenberg.

During the the artist talk, it was also a good opportunity for people to purchase any of Greenberg’s polymer clay sculptures. Prices for some of Greenberg’s sculptures ranged from $185 to $485.

Along with Greenberg, Andrea McKenna was the other New Jersey artist that also participated. McKenna grew up in Fort Lee and she is an interior decorative painter. As an interior decorative painter, McKenna does faux finishes, which is a style of decorative paint finish that replicates particular materials such a wood and marble for example.

McKenna talked about how she began to paint people’s furniture for a living and began restoring very old furniture.

“It was about five to six years ago, I got a lot of clients ask me to paint their furniture that they didn’t necessarily want to purchase new,” said McKenna.

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Photo by Franchesca Maniscalco

McKenna said she has a requirement when it comes to painting old furniture.

“They had to made of wood and generally of the older decades such as the 30s. And it had to have character and I do not want do the usual finishes that clients were asking for such whitewashing and country finishes,” said McKenna.

The 107 Bowers Gallery & ArtSpace is open on Saturdays and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.. The Visualize exhibition will be open until Saturday Nov. 18. Take the opportunity to visit the Bowers Gallery before the exhibition ends.

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