SOPAC is honored to be serving as a collection site for the 18th Annual New Jersey Cares Coat Drive.
This year, Jersey Cares plans to collect and distribute more than 60,000 gently used winter coats to men, women and children in need throughout New Jersey (a 50% increase over last year). Over the past seventeen years, Jersey Cares has collected, sorted, and distributed more than 400,000 coats to New Jersey residents through this annual drive.
Donations will be accepted in the SOPAC lobby through February 7, 2014 during Box Office hours. Box Office hours are Monday through Saturday, 12noon – 6pm.
For more information please visit: www.JerseyCares.org
Due to the continuing shutdown of the federal government, the Jazz Knights of West Point performance originally scheduled for Tuesday, October 15th at 7:30PM at SOPAC has been postponed. As a military band, the Jazz Knights are unfortunately impacted by the shutdown. The presenters of the event, Seton Hall University Arts Council, hope to reschedule for another date this season.
As soon as an alternate date is selected, SOPAC will contact all ticket holders. Tickets for October 15th will be honored for the rescheduled performance. We apologize for any inconvenience and share in your disappointment, but hope we will have the opportunity to welcome you to SOPAC soon.
If you would like to speak with a Box Office Representative, please call 973-313-ARTS (2787). The SOPAC Box Office is open Monday through Saturday from Noon-6PM and two hours prior to any performance.
Featuring Works by artists Gerard Amsellem & Mikel Frank, and Dan Fenelon
Curated by Micha Hamilton of GAS Gallery And Studio
April 12-December 22, 2013
Exhibition Closing Date: Sunday, December 22
Closing Reception: Sunday, December 22 6:00pm
Herb and Milly Iris Gallery at SOPAC
Hours of Operation: Monday-Saturday 12noon-6pm, and during performances
Left: Dan Fenelon, Beyond Lascaux, 48” x 72”
Right: Gerard Amsellem & Mikel Frank, The Passing, 90” x 180”
Primal Convergence features paintings, drawings and constructs by three NJ-based artists – the collaborative team of Gerard Amsellem & Mikel Frank, and Dan Fenelon.
Invoking the tribal, the transcendental and the mythic, Primal Convergence is a collection of paintings, drawings, collages, constructs and sculptures. Simultaneously ancient and futuristic, tethered by their bold, explosive use of colors and immersive scale, the works of these artists exude a sense of the sacred and supernatural, eliciting an instinctual, visceral reaction and engaging the viewer in a transformative meditation of mind, body and spirit. The large expressionist collage/paintings of Gerard Amsellem & Mikel Frank manifest as multi-paneled works combining the power of action painting with a nod to Japanese Shoji screens and Renaissance altarpieces. Important to these works is the spontaneous working process these two artists have established, allowing their individual creative sensibilities for art and life to translate into a symbiotic vision through process and palette, creating a third artist. At the same time, the seemingly stream-of-conscious, figurative paintings, constructs and sculptures of Dan Fenelon are iconographic and totemic, and are evocative of talismanic and fetishistic art often associated with shamanic practices of archaic and indigenous cultures. With a range of work alternately playful and profound, deliberate and serendipitous, one should be careful not to dismiss the primal as primitive, as it would negate the highly developed artistic knowledge and skill these artists have acquired through lifelong passion and practice. Primal Convergence is a celebration of the connective, timeless expressions of the human spirit.
Gerard Amsellem & Mikel Frank
Gerard Amsellem and Mikel Frank are known for their collaborative project titled Visual Passion, featuring large-scale, multi-panel non-objective expressionist paintings and collages applied to canvas and wooden door panels. Their collaboration evolved from a shared experience; the passing of loved ones. During the course of their collaboration they have created many works, most notably The Passing. The Passing was created in 2011 at GAS Gallery And Studio (Maplewood, NJ), and was presented as a live, one-day painting event open to the public. The event was documented with photos and video recordings showcasing their collaborative process and shared opinions on art, love, life and death. For more information, visit www.visualpassion.net.
A South Orange resident by way of Paris, France, Gerard Amsellem earned his Masters Degree in French Literature and Art History from the University of Paris. In addition to painting, he is also a filmmaker and educator, teaching French and World Film at Livingston High School in Livingston, NJ. Gerard’s work has been exhibited in Paris, locally at GAS Gallery And Studio in Maplewood, NJ, and other notable galleries. In 2011, he produced and directed a short film titled Bartleby, and he has established a local film club called La Cinemateque.
Mikel Frank is a New Jersey native and holds a Master of Fine Arts Degree in painting from Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY. He has exhibited in shows and competitions throughout the country and his work appears in many private collections. Mikel is the creator and leader of an artist critique group called The Contemporary Artists Forum, and has been curator of the annual Contemporary Artists Forum Exhibition since its inception in 2002. He is a volunteer and executive board member of the 1978 Maplewood Arts Center in Maplewood, NJ, and has worked at the Metropolitan Museum of Art since 1985.
Influenced by modern art giants such as Basquiat, Haring, Picasso and Warhol, Dan Fenelon’s art is an infusion of cartooning, graffiti, modernism, pop, tribalism and street art styles, marked by an explosion of colors and representational imagery. Utilizing traditional materials like canvas and wood, while also employing materials such as metals, plastics and found objects, Fenelon’s works manifest as multi-layered, polyglyphic paintings and totemic constructs invoking the voices of civilizations past, as if they were glorious artifacts uncovered in an archaeological dig. He is known for his large, exuberant murals and paintings, as well as his collection of colorfully and ornamentally embellished vinyl dolls reminiscent of the Kachina Dolls found in the fetish art of the Native American cultures.
Dan Fenelon trained at The Art Students League of New York and the Museum School of Fine Arts in Boston. He has exhibited in more than twenty solo gallery exhibitions from Chelsea (NYC) to Los Angeles (CA), had a featured mural exhibit at the Montclair Art Museum and has produced giant murals nationwide. In 2010, Dan was commissioned by the Barat Foundation to create a large-scale mural to welcome the Dalai Lama to the Newark Peace Summit. He has produced work for professional sports organizations such as the National Hockey League (NHL) and Major League Baseball (MLB), and has recently partnered with the Critical Mass Brand to feature his designs on the company’s surf and snowboard apparel available this spring. He lives and works in Madison, NJ. For more information, visit www.wavedog.com.
Micha Hamilton, curator
Originally from Los Angeles, California, Micha Hamilton is a published photographer, filmmaker, writer and graphic designer. He studied film and television broadcasting at the Arts Center College of Design, Pasadena and University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) respectively, and earned his Associate Arts Degree in Computer Graphics and Graphic Design from Platt College, Los Angeles. Micha is Owner and Art Director of MHP+D/Micha Hamilton Photography + Design, a boutique creative company providing clients with stunning visual imagery for commercial, non-commercial and private needs. In January 2010, having discovered the rich and vast creative talent of the region, he co-founded the visual arts exhibition and production space GAS Gallery And Studio in Maplewood, NJ, where he currently resides. For more information, visit www.itisagas.com and www.michahamiltonphotography.com.
Herb and Milly Iris Gallery at SOPAC
The Herb and Milly Iris Gallery at SOPAC brings contemporary art to the community, providing artists opportunities to reach new audiences. The artwork on display is for sale. Partial proceeds benefit SOPAC. To purchase the artwork on display at The Herb & Milly Iris Gallery, please contact the SOPAC Development Department at 973.382.1033 or email@example.com.
SOUTH ORANGE PERFORMING ARTS CENTER (SOPAC) APPOINTS NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR MARK PACKER
South Orange, NJ (1.9.13) --- The Board of Governors of the South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC) today announced the appointment of Mark Packer as its new Executive Director in an executive search process guided by Arts Consulting Group. Packer will assume his official duties at SOPAC on March 1, 2013.
“I’m thrilled to be joining the team at SOPAC,” says Packer. “It’s an honor to soon be at the helm of what has become the cultural center of the South Orange–Maplewood communities as well as a cultural beacon for the state of New Jersey. This marks a new chapter for SOPAC and I’m excited to be playing a role in it.”
Packer brings over 30 years of arts administration experience, significant fundraising acumen and an outstanding record as a leader in the New Jersey’s cultural arts scene. As the long-time Executive Director of Appel Farms Arts & Music Center, he expanded the center to a year-round performing arts organization offering a diverse array of programming each year, with extensive community outreach programs in schools as well as therapeutic arts programs for the elderly, mentally challenged adults and families in crisis. Also under his leadership, Appel Farms assumed management and programming responsibility for the 700 seat Landis Theater in Vineland, NJ. In addition, Packer has played a major role in regional and statewide arts organizations including the South Jersey Cultural Alliance, ArtPride in New Jersey, and the Arts & Business Partnership of Southern New Jersey.
“SOPAC is extremely pleased and excited that Mark Packer has agreed to become SOPAC’s new Executive Director,” exclaims Tony Leitner, SOPAC Board Chair. “We could not have asked for a more experienced, passionate, professional and socially responsible leader. We are most impressed with his vision for artistic direction, prioritization of arts education, and belief that SOPAC is a truly valuable asset to the local community. We enthusiastically welcome him and his wife Laura to the SOPAC family!”
Packer replaces the Interim Executive Director Linda Onorevole, who will be returning to her initial position as SOPAC’s Director of Development. She graciously replaced SOPAC’s former Executive/Artistic Director Michael Bollinger in late-August 2012. Packer was selected after SOPAC engaged Arts Consulting Group, a national executive search firm specializing in arts and culture recruitments, to assist with the three-month international search process.
About Mark Packer
Mark Packer joined the staff of Appel Farms in 1984. From 1985 through 1987 he served as the Summer Arts Camp Director and from 1988 through 2012 he served as the Executive Director. A native of Montreal, Canada, he is a graduate cum laude of Kenyon College, where he received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology, and attended courses towards his Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania and Temple University. He plays a major role in regional and statewide arts organizations including the South Jersey Cultural Alliance, which he founded in 1992, and ArtPride New Jersey, where he has been a Trustee since 1988 and served as President from 2006 - 2012. He co-founded the Arts & Business Partnership of Southern New Jersey and was honored in 2002 as the recipient of ABP's annual Art Partner of the Year. In 2009, Mark received the Lillian Levy Standing Ovation Award from the South Jersey Cultural Alliance for his outstanding service to the nonprofit arts community of the region and the State of New Jersey. He has served as a consultant, mentor, and panelist for numerous organizations and individuals, including the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, the Gloucester County Cultural and Heritage Commission, and the G.G. Green Redevelopment Project.
Since 2006, SOPAC has been serving as a premier performing arts center in the region. SOPAC offers innovative artistic and cultural experiences for diverse audiences in an intimate, inviting environment. The multidisciplinary arts center hosts a variety of live performances, community events and education programs for all ages. To further expand its offerings, SOPAC has a partnership with the Juilliard School of Music to present Juilliard @ SOPAC—a series featuring upcoming musicians from the acclaimed conservatory. SOPAC is also a home for Seton Hall University Arts Council’s performances, including Classical Concert Series, Jazz N’ the Hall performances and Seton Hall Theatre productions. SOPAC also presents performances by its theater company in residence, Midtown Direct Rep, and its dance company in residence, Lydia Johnson Dance. For more information, visit www.SOPACnow.org.
About Arts Consulting Group, Inc. (ACG)
Arts Consulting Group is the leading provider of hands-on interim management, executive search, fundraising & marketing consulting, facilities & program planning, and organizational development services for the arts and culture industry. With offices in New York, Washington DC, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Diego, Portland, and Seattle, ACG consultants are also located in other communities throughout North America to best serve the needs of its clients. For more information, visit www.ArtsConsulting.com.
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