Monday, September 25, 2017

NJ Rep Opens the New West End Arts Center With an Emphasis on "Arts"

New Art Gallery Opening and Classes to be Held this Fall

WHERE: West End Arts Center, located at 132 West End Avenue in Long Branch

Oct 1 - Oct 8 will be the inaugural event for New Jersey Repertory Company's new arts center. The ALL ABOUT EVE FESTIVAL OF THE ARTS will feature Theatre Brut (28 short plays), live music, poetry, refreshments, a photography exhibit and the introduction of their new art gallery.

Peace by Lori Lee SperlingAward-winning artist, Mare Akana, is NJ Rep’s Gallery Director and Visual Arts Coordinator, and she is curating the gallery show featuring the work of fellow New Jersey artists Amy Faris, Janelle Wilson, Jimmy Leslie, Kate Wilt, Lizzi Schippert, Lori Lee Sperling, Mary Phillips, Nicole Hymowitz, Suzanne Osterweil Weber and Sven Widen, as well as several of her own pieces. (Left: Peace by Lori Lee Sperling)

As part of the Festival, works exhibited in the gallery show celebrate women, the female experience and the feminine form through sculpture; fiber arts; mixed media; watercolor,arcylic and oil paintings; and 3-dimensional environmental installations—with pieces examining everything from intimate personal stories to global social issues.

Self Portrait by Nicole Hymowitz photo on metal  (1)Located in a former classroom, the gallery space is being transformed through extensive renovations including the installation of a lighting grid, hanging rail systems, moveable display panels, and baffling curtains to protect artwork from direct sunlight. The gallery will be painted white with black accents and will provide bench seating for patrons. “Although this space will no longer be recognizable as a classroom,” said Ms. Akana, “it will still be a place of discovery — dedicated to building awareness, appreciation and accessibility for art, artists and art-lovers.” (Left: Self-portrait by Nicole Hymowitz)

The Gallery will be open, free to the public, for the Opening Reception on Wednesday, October 4th, from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. and at other times throughout the Festival. The exhibit will run the entire month of October. After the festival closes, gallery hours will be Saturdays and Sundays noon to 5 and weekdays by appointment. (732-229-3166).

Classes in the visual arts are being taught by Myke Karlowski and Jimmy Leslie and will be offered at the center beginning October 21.

Andrea PhoxPhotography Exhibition: Shine 100 Women of Long Branch by Andrea Phox

Award-winning photographer Andrea Phox (right) is a long-time photographer and artist who has gained recognition not only for her individual portraits, family and multigenerational portraiture, but also for landscape and nature photography as well. She earned the title of Certified Professional Photographer (CPP) in 2013, and, in 2015, by virtue of winning numerous awards, she became a Platinum Medalist. In 2016, she received the title of Master of Photography from the Professional Photographers of America (PPA) and was awarded three blue ribbons in the PPA International Print Competition. Andrea is a long-time resident of Long Branch where she lives with her husband Lance and her daughter Sara.

Andrea hatched the idea for the Shine 100 Woman of Long Branch exhibition with Lisa Kelly of the Long Branch Public Library. Her goal was to create a context through art all 100 women selected would be given the opportunity to unite as a family and thus bring Long Branch closer as a community. Andrea knew intuitively that women would have to be selected from all communities within Long Branch; representatives of all races, creeds, ages and economic status represented in the City. NJ Rep is proud to exhibit this beautiful and powerful collection of portraits.

For tickets to the festival, registration for classes, and additional information on all the events, call 732-229-3166 or visit