Tuesday, October 8, 2019



WHEN: on exhibit from October 23 to December 17. An opening reception will take place on Wednesday, October 23, from 6 to 8 pm. 
Academy Square Galleries, 33 Plymouth Street, Montclair

The Studio Montclair Incubator at Academy Square Galleries presents Of A Feather,  featuring the work of three local artists—Kathleen Caputo, Elisabeth Fontana, and Elena Odulak—that examines how these artists share a common interest in exploring change through their art. 

While each artist investigates a different facet of the changes they encounter in their life and the greater world, they all delve deeply into the means by which art can evoke and express transformations. Collectively, the body of work expresses shifts in perception from the personal changes in one artist's life, to the changes another artist perceives in nature, to changes that occur as a result of migration. Their works share a commonality of purpose in the attempt to create imagery that captures and portrays fleeting and ephemeral aspects of a shared human experience.

However similar their messages, these three artists’ styles are compellingly different. Caputo uses vivid lines and color to examine the possibilities of migration through adaptation and acceptance when confronted with changing circumstances. Fontana’s approach by contrast is a meditative one, focusing on the existential act of looking, searching, finding, and losing as she builds the surface of her paintings through many layers of marks, dots, and lines. Odulak’s haute couture garments launch into the three-dimensional. Her designs are influenced by both terrestrial details seen from a bird’s eye view and the macro-level patterns found throughout the world.

About the Artists

Kathleen Caputo is a painter and mixed media artist who has recently rekindled her artistic focus. Native to the area, she spent many early years taking art classes in Montclair. She studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, California College of Art & Crafts and the School of Visual Arts, NY, where she earned her BFA in painting. After working in educational publishing for a number of years, Caputo began to develop a significant and progressive hearing loss.  She shifted her career and immersed herself further in an ongoing yoga practice while adding massage therapy classes, ultimately earning an MS in Acupuncture from Pacific College of Oriental Medicine. Caputo opened her own practice, Rising Spirits Acupuncture in Upper Montclair, where she is currently treating patients. (Left: Bird Singing in Moonlight, 13 x 19” framed,  Giclée print.)

Elisabeth Fontana is a painter and mixed media artist. A Long Island, NY native, Fontana spent much of her life near the water and finds inspiration through the shifting nature of the landscape. She graduated from Cornell University with a BFA  in Painting, and a Master’s Degree in Art Education is from Teachers College at Columbia University. She taught art for six years in New York City before moving to New Jersey. Fontana is currently teaching art at Benjamin Franklin Middle School in Ridgewood, NJ. She lives in Montclair with her husband and two children. (Above, left: The Unbearable Lightness of Being, 2019, 12” x 16,” Gouache on panel)

Elena Odulak is a textile and graphic designer. Growing up just outside of New York City, she was captivated by the bustling fashion and design world. Other inspiration came from her mother, a flight attendant, who exposed her to the world from up above and her father, a chiropractor, who unknowingly gave her an appreciation for the body and its form. At age fifteen she began pursuing her interests with various internships in NYC and attended The Parsons School of Design's pre-college program.  She attended the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles eventually finding her way to the University of Michigan. She is a recent graduate of the University of Michigan’s Stamps School of Art and Design where she studied textile and fashion design. Currently, Odulak is working as the Assistant to the Creative Director at Oprah Magazine. (Left: Flight AC1917, 2019, US Size 6, Re-purposed textiles, fabric paint, swarovski crystals, beading)

About the Incubator Program
Studio Montclair’s Incubator Program, directed by Lisa Diamond Rosenthal and Sara Holliday, seeks to mentor new and emerging artists and provide them with a space for what is often their first solo or small group show exhibit.

About Studio Montclair
Studio Montclair is a nonprofit organization of exhibiting professional artists and others interested in the visual arts. Its mission is to promote culture and education in the visual arts and encourage emerging artists. Founded in 1997, the organization includes over 500 members including artists from around the United States, as well as Europe and Asia. In the past year, it has exhibited more than 280 works of art and has encouraged and interacted with close to 1,000 artists.

About the Academy Square Galleries Directors

Lisa Diamond Rosenthal is a painter and sculptor. She is also the former owner of Montclair’s Nandi School of Art, a local art hub where she employed more than twenty area artists and art teachers to support year-round classes in painting, ceramics, fiber arts, animé, and sewing. Each year, Lisa assists various non-profits by facilitating acquisitions and curating large-gallery art shows for fundraisers. She was recognized by U.S. Congressman Bill Pascrell and the New Jersey Coalition Against Sexual Assault (NJCASA) for raising significant funds for NJCASA’s crisis hotline for women through Montclair’s Rock ‘n’ Art Ball, an event she spearheaded, developed, and oversaw. A graduate of Cornell University, Lisa now owns and operates a life-and-health coaching business in Little Falls, NJ.

Sara Holliday is a practicing artist and has taught art for several years in New York. Before focusing on her teaching and art practices, she worked for a New York City graphic design and communications firm. Sara served on the Board of Directors of the International Charter School of NY, a school that serves the diverse population of Brooklyn. She also co-founded and served on the Board of Directors for The Mentoring Tree Foundation, an organization with the mission of providing expanded educational opportunities to underprivileged and underserved youth. Sara holds a Masters in Art and Art Education from Columbia University’s Teachers College and an undergraduate degree in Arts Administration.