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2012 Arsenal Gallery Exhibits

Exhibits by Year:

December 13, 2012 – January 10, 2013

Wreath Interpretations

Parks & Recreation celebrates the holiday season with its 30th annual exhibition of unique, unconventional wreaths. A diverse selection of 42 fine artists, horticulturalists, designers, and other spirited contributors enliven this ageless holiday symbol. Materials such as pistachio shells, stained glass, bicycle tubes, and Chinese food containers, among others, are used to examine themes as diverse as Victoria hair wreaths to the recent impact of Hurricane Sandy. This exhibition is sure to be one of the most thoughtful, enjoyable experiences of this year's holiday season.

Sabu, Mixed Media Wreath, bank deposit envelopes, scrap paper, ribbon and found materials, 2012, Photo courtesy of Materials for the Arts

September 13 – October 25, 2012

Julio Valdez, Nature: Prints, Drawings and Mixed Media

The New York City Department of Parks & Recreation is pleased to announce Nature: Prints, Drawings, and Mixed Media, an exhibition of 21 exquisite and innovative works on paper by artist Julio Valdez, curated by Graciela Kartofel. Utilizing nontraditional materials and processes, he explores the inseparable spiritual relationship between man and his natural environment. The resulting works use a visual language that echoes traditional Latin American mythology from his native Dominican Republic and simultaneously blends his past and present.  The mythical nature of Caribbean culture is evident in each of Valdez’s works—he uses ancestral symbols with a profoundly sincere contemporary approach.

Download the catalog for Nature: Prints, Drawings and Mixed Media.

Julio Valdez, Oceanic Eyes, 2010-11, Solarplate Etching, print on paper, A/P, Printed by the artist and Tony Kirk

June 14 – August 30, 2012

Parkcentric: Photographs from the Museum of the City of New York, 1890-1940

Featuring nearly 70 photographs, this exhibition celebrates two great institutions—the New York City parks system and the Museum of the City of New York. The museum, originally housed at Gracie Mansion in Carl Schurz Park, is dedicated to an examination of the city and its myriad aspects. The park system, comprising nearly 17% of the metropolis, is a forum for activities for people of all walks of life and social status. It is both a refuge from the city and a mirror of the city itself. The images in this show are a fraction of the museum’s immense holdings, yet they represent a critical time in the parks system—from the social reform era to the cusp of World War II and ascendancy of modern New York—and demonstrate the beauty and vigor of the city’s parks. Featuring photographs by the Byron Company, Berenice Abbott, Jesse Tarbox Beals, Samuel H. Gottscho, Jacob Riis, and the Wurts Brothers, among others.

View selected images from Parkcentric.

Courtesy of the Museum of the City of New York

April 26 – June 6, 2012

A Window on Nature: Art of Asuka Hishiki

A Window on Nature: Art of Asuka Hishiki exhibits over 35 watercolors illustrating a poetic and painstakingly detailed observation of plants and insects. Hishiki’s paintings of vegetables from New York City’s celebrated Greenmarkets–most notably her heirloom tomatoes–and her imaginative series of plant–like insect mutations are influenced by Charles Darwin and others who advanced the scientific documentation of the evolution of species, as well as her fascination with the work of 18th century naturalist and scientific illustrator Maria Sibylla Merian.

Asuka Hishiki, An Accidental Resemblance—An Apple and a Tomato (Malus domestica and Solanum lycopersicum), 2011, watercolor on paper and Atropos Fungus Caterpillar, Death's-head Hawkmoth fungus caterpillar, watercolor on paper

March 8 – April 19, 2012

Nature’s Return

Nature’s Return, curated by Omo Misha, explores the growing dissonance between humanity and the natural world. Through creative works of wonder, integrity and beauty, sixteen contemporary artists present works that examine our fragile relationship with the planet. Each offers a unique perspective, with some drawing attention to specific landscapes, industrial conflicts and urbanization, and others simply seeking answers to perplexing environmental concerns. Nature’s Return is a vivid call to focus on the planet, recognize our oneness with the earth and to respond, with action, to the occurrence of environmental injustice the land throughout.

Noreen Dean Dresser, Edges in Eternity, Acrylic on canvas, photograph by Allicette Torres

January 18 – February 28, 2012

Faith, Courage & Purpose: Artists of the Diaspora

In commemoration of Black History Month, the Arsenal Gallery is pleased to present Faith, Courage & Purpose: Artists of the Diaspora, an exhibition of 29 paintings by Betty Blayton, Stacey Brown, Leroy Campbell, James Denmark, Essud Fungcap, April Harrison and Charly Palmer. Curated by Karen and Sharon Mackey, founders of Mackey Twins Fine Art, this exhibition is sparked by their unyielding commitment to educate and expose people to artists of color. These Diaspora artists’ “faith” and “courage” have enabled them to continue on course in spite of racial adversity and exclusion.

April Harrison, Blended, 2010, Mixed media

Related Links

History of the Arsenal

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