September 11, 2019

“NOSOTRO VENCEREMOS”: The works of Salina Almanzar are featured in “Ni de aquí, Ni de allá — On Being a Third Generation Dominirican,” on view through Sunday, October 13 at the Rider University Art Gallery. An opening reception is Thursday, September 12 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

The Rider University Art Gallery presents an exhibit of works by Salina Almanzar titled “Ni de aquí, Ni de allá — On Being a Third Generation Dominirican,” on view through Sunday, October 13. An opening reception and an artist’s conversation with Gallery Director Julia Marsh will be held on Thursday, September 12 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Almanzar is from Lancaster, Pa., and a graduate of Franklin and Marshall College, where she majored in studio art and English literature. She also holds a master’s degree in arts administration from Drexel University, where her thesis topic was Creative Placemaking in the Lancaster Latinx community. She researched and wrote about the ways that the Latinx community in her hometown have created spaces for cultural preservation and the obstacles or successes they may have faced up to this point. She has continued her research collecting stories and create opportunities for cultural preservation in Lancaster. more

September 4, 2019

“Tales of Genji III,” 1998, color woodcut, 119.4 x 106.7 cm. © 2019 Helen Frankenthaler Foundation, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/Tyler Graphics, Ltd., Mount Kisco, New York. For more information, visit artmuseum.princeton.edu. The exhibit is free to the public and will be up through October 20, 2019.

By Stuart Mitchner

I’m on my own, to be thoroughly me without limits and anything is possible…
—Helen Frankenthaler (1928-2011)

Something resembling Helen Frankenthaler’s credo is on my mind every time I begin a column. Now it’s Labor Day weekend, art and work, the charisma of old books, William Wordsworth’s “Tintern Abbey,” a trip to Hay-on-Wye, and the Frankenthaler exhibition, which will be at the Princeton University Art Museum  through October 20.

The exhibit takes its theme from literary critic William Empson’s landmark study, Seven Types of Ambiguity (1930), a title Frankenthaler borrowed for the large painting on view near the entrance to the gallery. According to curators Mitra Abbaspour and Calvin Brown, the show illustrates “the central principle of Empson’s text: that close reading, like close looking, can yield deep relationships with an abstract composition.”

Given the no-limits, anything-is-possible nature of this column, my idea of “close looking” is expressed in the second stanza of Wordsworth’s “Lines Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey,” where, “with an eye made quiet by the power/Of harmony, and the deep power of joy,/We see into the life of things.” more

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY: Princeton Symphony Orchestra begins celebrating the 10th anniversary year of music director Rossen Milanov with a concert featuring twin pianists Christina and Michelle Naughton, who are natives of Princeton, on September 21 and 22. (Photo by Lisa-Marie Mazzucco)

On Saturday, September 21 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, September 22 at 4 p.m. at Richardson Auditorium, the Princeton Symphony Orchestra’s (PSO) celebration of Rossen Milanov’s 10th Anniversary Season begins with three works by Mozart. Princeton-born twins and virtuoso pianists Christina and Michelle Naughton perform the composer’s Concerto for Two Pianos in E-flat Major on a program with the Overture to The Marriage of Figaro and Mozart’s Symphony No. 41 “Jupiter.”  more

DOYLESTOWN ART FESTIVAL: Scheduled for September 7 and 8, the 28th annual Arts Festival in Doylestown, Pa., will feature 160 juried artists, musical performances on five stages, and an array of art activities and local food vendors.

The 28th annual Doylestown Arts Festival, held in Doylestown, Pa, will this year involve 160 juried artists, 30 musical performances on five stages, and a variety of art activities and local food vendors along with the shops, galleries, and restaurants that line the streets of what USA Today called the “best small town cultural scene” in a nationwide vote.

Expected to draw tens of thousands of visitors, the 2019 Doylestown Arts Festival — on September 7 and 8 — will be preceded by Art Week, an initiative that celebrates the town’s distinctive identity as a year-round destination for arts and culture.

“We are immensely proud of how the Doylestown Arts Festival has expanded so dramatically in recent years and has introduced so many new visitors to our small, very special town,” said Paul Boger, Festival director. “We are equally excited to celebrate Doylestown’s permanent arts and culture attractions, including two significant museums, many art galleries, several historical societies, and dozens of retail enterprises, restaurants, and inns showcasing work by local artists.” more

“SPRING IN BLOOM”: This work by Connie Cruser is featured in “Textures,” a mixed media exhibit at the Lakewood Gallery, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, Hamilton, September 7 through November 13. An opening reception is September 12 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

“Textures,” a mixed media exhibit, will be on display at the Lakefront Gallery, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, One Hamilton Place, Hamilton from September 7 through November 13.  An opening reception with light refreshments will be held on Thursday, September 12 from 5:30-7:30 p.m.

Free and open to the public, “Textures” is sponsored by the Princeton Photography Club. The exhibit will feature the photography of Valerie Chaucer-Levine, the paper quilled art work and pet portraiture of Connie Cruser, acrylic paintings by Sonali Mohanty and watercolors by Gloria Wiernik.

Lakefront Gallery is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily. The gallery is wheelchair accessible. For more visit the Princeton Photography Club website at www.princetonphotoclub.org.

“POSTPOSITION/PREPOSITION”: Sarah Hulsey’s woodcuts are featured in an exhibition on the intersection of mathematics and art, on view at the West Windsor Arts Center September 9 through November 1. An opening reception is Sunday, September 22 from 4 to 6 p.m.

The West Windsor Arts Council (WWAC) will present an exhibition on the intersection of mathematics and art at the West Windsor Arts Center September 9 through November 1, featuring 17 artists from across the United States. Juried by Lucas Kelly, professor of visual arts at Mercer County Community College, the exhibit examines how artists incorporate mathematical concepts into their work, both as subjects and underlying compositional structures. It includes painting, sculpture, prints, woodcut, and digital media.

An opening reception with the artists will be held Sunday, September 22 from 4 to 6 p.m., with artists be on hand to discuss their work.

Kelly’s work has been exhibited in museums and galleries across the United States and throughout Europe. His work has been the subject of multiple solo and group exhibitions, most notably in the survey of abstract painting The Painted World at PS1 MoMA. In 2019 Kelly was named as the inaugural artist in residence at the Penn Center for Neuroaesthetics. A full professor in visual arts at Mercer County Community College, Kelly holds a BFA from Maryland Institute College of Art and a MFA from Mason Gross School of the Arts. He is a member of the Tiger Strikes Asteroid network of artists, and his studio is in Philadelphia. more

August 28, 2019

By Stuart Mitchner

A brave man and a brave poet.
— Bob Dylan

In Jack Kerouac’s 1962 novel Big Sur, Lawrence Ferlinghetti appears as Lorenzo Monsanto (his real-life middle name), “with his husky shoulders, big blue eyes, twinkling rosy skin, that perpetual smile of his that earned him the name Smiler in college,” a smile “you often wondered ‘Is it real?’ until you realized if Monsanto should ever stop using that smile how could the world go on anyway — It was that kind of smile too inseparable from him to be believably allowed to disappear.”

Lawrence Monsanto Ferlinghetti is still here, still smiling the world on its way his way anyway in Little Boy, a 179-page song of myself/ourself/itself/everyself published March 24 on his 100th birthday (the “Little Boy” is Ferlinghetti as a child). How big is this underwhelmingly titled tour de force? Singer songwriter Tom Waits says, “When I first came out to San Francisco and heard the name Ferlinghetti, I thought it must be a large geographic area. Turns out it is.”

Abandon all hope ye who enter the realm of Ferlinghetti if you’re “half in love with easeful” semicolons and periods. After the first 16 or so pages, the machinery of punctuation is all but dispensed with “like a used-up booster rocket” in the words of former U.S. poet laureate Billy Collins, who calls Little Boy “the last wild, motor-mouth, book-length riff of this poet’s generation … a hip word-flood,” not “a stream” but “a “torrent of consciousness.” In the author’s own words, he’s speaking with the “inexpressible ecstatic at once coherent and incoherent sighing or babbling the voice of all of us heard and unheard loud and soft.”

Prominent among the literary forces at play here is Molly Bloom’s “yes-I-will-yes” soliloquy in the closing chapter of James Joyce’s Ulysses. Other writers cited and sampled in passing range from Twain to Whitman, Eliot to Keats to Yeats, as Ferlinghetti performs a death-and-old-age-be-damned variation on the famous endless scroll of his old friend Kerouac’s On the Road. more

BACK IN REHEARSAL: David A. McConnell leads Voices Chorale as they prepare for the upcoming music season.

In its second season under the direction of David A. McConnell, Voices Chorale is preparing for holiday concerts taking place in December. The first rehearsal is Monday, September 9, and new prospective singers are welcome to join for warm-ups, listening, and experiencing rehearsal. Gathering and refreshments will begin at 7 p.m.

Rehearsals are held on Monday evenings from 7:30-9:30 p.m. at Music Together Worldwide, 225 Pennington-Hopewell Road, Hopewell. Auditions for those who enjoy singing a varied repertoire including classical choral masterworks and contemporary music. Voices is especially seeking tenors and basses, but singers of all voice parts are welcomed to audition.

Auditions will be held prior to rehearsal on September 9, 16, and 23. Contact Audition Coordinator Jen Goings to arrange for a brief, stress-free audition at  jengoings8@gmail.com. more

Donnacha Dennehy

The ensemble Alarm Will Sound brings the concert version of Princeton University Professor Donnacha Dennehy’s modern cantata, ​The Hunger, to Princeton Sound Kitchen on September 17, 8 p.m., in Richardson Auditorium.

Rooted in the emotional, political, and socioeconomic devastation of Ireland’s Great Famine (1845-52), the work features soprano Katherine Manley and Princeton University Global Scholar ​Iarla Ó Lionáird. The Irish folk music narrative is interwoven with personal, historical accounts, where the libretto principally draws from firsthand accounts by Asenath Nicholson, an American humanitarian so moved by the waves of immigrants arriving in New York that she traveled to Ireland to report from the cabins of starving families.

The cantata will be paired with performances of compositions by Princeton graduate students Pascal Le Boeuf, Jenny Beck, Alyssa Weinberg, Tom Morrison, Connor Way, and Bora Yoon. The staged version of The Hunger was commissioned by Alarm Will Sound and premiered at BAM’s Next Wave Festival in 2016. The project received financial assistance from New Music USA, The MAP Fund, and the Arts Council of Ireland.

Free tickets are required for this concert, available at music.princeton.edu and at (609) 258-9220.

“FOUR SEASONS WATERCOLOR ARTISTS”: This painting by Liz Alexander is featured in an exhibit by a group of 10 New Jersey artists who have met bi-monthly for several years under the guidance of professional artist Russ Johnson. It will be on view September 2-30 at Gourgaud Gallery in Cranbury.

The Gourgaud Gallery, 23-A North Main Street in Cranbury, will host a show of the “Four Seasons Watercolor Artists” from September 2 to 30.

The “Four Seasons Watercolor Artists” are a group of 10 New Jersey artists who have met bi-monthly for several years under the guidance and tutelage of professional artist Russ Johnson. At each session, the members are challenged with a new subject to paint using watercolor, and they also receive a formal critique from Johnson.

There will be several paintings from each artist on exhibit, and most works will be for sale. The artists will be featuring many of their more recent original pieces.

Gallery hours are Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and on Sunday September 15 from 1 to 3 p.m.

Cash or a check made out to the Cranbury Arts Council is accepted as payment. All art sold gives a 20 percent donation to the Cranbury Arts Council in order to continue its mission to promote and support the arts through its programs, classes, exhibits, summer art and technology camp, and winter theater camp. For more information, visit www.cranburyartscouncil.org.

“PUMPKINSEED”: This painting on stone by Patrick Bernuth is featured in “Creature Comforts: Habitat Immersions,” on view through September 20 at D&R Greenway Land Trust’s Johnson Education Center. The exhibit also features work by artists Annelies van Dommelen, Judith Hummer, and Minako Ota. An artists’ reception is Friday, September 6, 5:30-7:30 p.m.

Desert, meadow, forest, marsh, water — each habitat creates a unique set of conditions for the wildlife that makes them home, offering nourishment, shelter, protection from weather, and other life essentials. In “Creature Comforts: Habitat Immersions,” on view through September 20 at D&R Greenway Land Trust’s Johnson Education Center, four award-winning artists — Patrick Bernuth, Annelies van Dommelen, Judith Hummer, and Minako Ota — demonstrate the vital connection between art and preserving habitat.

At an artists’ reception on Friday, September 6, 5:30-7:30 p.m., Bernuth, van Dommelen, Hummer, and Ota will talk about what inspires them.

“Through preservation of more than 20,500 acres in central New Jersey, D&R Greenway has been at the forefront of protecting wildlife habitat for three decades,” says Director of Land Stewardship Tina Notas. “The vast, contiguous grasslands at St. Michaels Farm Preserve, for example, provide excellent opportunities to create and enhance habitat for grassland bird populations such as bobolinks, sparrows, and American kestrels.” more

August 21, 2019

By Stuart Mitchner

By the time we got to Woodstock, we were half a million strong
And everywhere there was song and celebration.
— Joni  Mitchell, from “Woodstock”

Joni Mitchell never actually got to Woodstock, but she found her way there in the stardust of her song. According to Mike Greenblatt’s 50th Anniversary Woodstock: Back to Yasgur’s Farm (Krause 2019), she missed the festival because of a scheduled appearance on the Dick Cavett Show. After watching televised news reports from the scene and listening to various musicians talk about it on the radio, she began writing the words and music that became the festival’s anthem. Of all the versions of “Woodstock” on record, the one that best expresses her yearning to be there is by Mathews Southern Comfort featuring steel-guitarist Gordon Huntley. Along with the plaintive singing of Ian Mathews, it’s Huntley’s playing that comes closest to conveying the blissfully unreal reality of longing to be somewhere without actually being there.

“We’re all still at Woodstock,” said Richie Havens, who opened the musical festivities on Friday, August 15, 1969. He was still there when he spoke those words 15 years later in 1984, and although he died on April 22, 2013, he’s still there now, so are we, and so are the couples whose lives together began there. A piece by Paul Kennedy in Greenblatt’s book relates how Kathy and Butch Dukes keep getting asked, “How can you be so liberal?” In the “amused voice” of a woman accustomed to that question, Kathy says, “I tell them, ‘Come on, we met at Woodstock.’”

Kathy was 21 and Butch was 19 when they found themselves “center stage and up the hill, right in the middle of the biggest concert in history.” Introduced by a mutual friend who soon left, they stayed where they were, “surrounded by hundreds of thousands of people, talking, listening to music, and, like all couples on a first date, getting to know each other. ‘We didn’t budge,’ Kathy says. ‘Once you sat down, there wasn’t anywhere to go.’”

 more

41 YEARS OF CHORAL MASTERWORKS: Princeton Pro Musica has been presenting choral works for more than four decades. The chorus has announced its upcoming season. (Photo by Jessi Franko)

Princeton Pro Musica (PPM) will open its 41st season on November 3 at 4 p.m. in Richardson Auditorium on the campus of Princeton University with an all-Mozart concert.

The Great Mass in C Minor, his majestic setting of the mass text, will feature soprano soloists Clara Rottsolk, last heard with PPM in the Monteverdi Vespers of 1610; and Molly Netter, in her first appearance with PPM. As a bonus, the orchestra will perform the Clarinet Concerto in A Major with Paschal Archer as soloist.

PPM’s holiday concert will take place on December 15 at 3 p.m. in the Patriots Theater at the War Memorial in Trenton. PPM will again be joined by the Trenton Children’s Chorus. The features the “Christmas portion” of Messiah by George Frederic Handel alongside Joy to the World, a suite of holiday carols and songs. more

HEAR THE BEAT: On Friday, September 13 at 7:30 p.m., Sō Percussion gives a free concert at Richardson Auditorium. Tickets are free but reservations are required.

The percussion ensemble Sō Percussion presents a free (ticketed) concert on Friday, September 13, at 7:30 p.m. in Richardson Auditorium, Alexander Hall, on the Princeton University campus. more

INTRIGUE AND BLACKMAIL: Nicholas Pecht, left, and Tristan Takacs star in ActorsNET’s “An Ideal Husband,” opening the troupe’s season at the Heritage Center Theatre in Morrisville, Pa., September 13-19.

ActorsNET launches its 24th season in September with Oscar Wilde’s comedy An Ideal Husband, adapted and updated by director Maryalice Rubins-Topoleski and Charlotte Kirkby.

“Wilde’s satirical masterpiece of blackmail and political corruption in late 19th century London has been moved effortlessly into Washington, D.C.’s world of politics and scandal during the 1960s,” Rubins-Topoleski said.  “And we’ve assembled an incredible cast to bring this work to life on our Heritage Center Theatre stage.”

Nicholas Pecht and Allison Deratzian costar in this updated comedy. Pecht is the “ideal husband” Robert Chiltern — a respected politician whose great future is threatened by a potentially career-wrecking secret.  Deratzian plays his idealistic wife, Gertrude, whose love is severely challenged when she learns his secret. more

“GHOSTS”: “Taos Pueblo, New Mexico,” by Joseph DeFay, left, and “Coronet” by Richard Harrington, right, are featured in their joint show, “Ghosts,” on view at the Artists’ Gallery in Lambertville September 5 through October 5. An opening reception is September 14 from 4 to 7 p.m.

Photographer Joseph DeFay and painter Richard Harrington have announced the opening of their joint show “Ghosts” on Thursday, September 5, at the Artists’ Gallery, 18 Bridge Street, Lambertville. The exhibit runs through Sunday, October 5. An opening reception with the artists will be held at the Gallery on Saturday, September 14, from 4 to 7 p.m.

“Ghosts” was initially proposed by Harrington after looking at DeFay’s photos of obsolete machinery.

“I was struck by how Joe captures the beauty of something that others look at as scrap metal or junk,” Harrington said. “I see the same thing in a car or truck that has been parked behind a building, or left to rust away in a field.” more

“PANSIES”: Works by local artist Trisha Vergis are now on view at the Gratz Gallery and Conservation Studio in Doylestown, Pa. The exhibit runs through the end of the year.

Gratz Gallery and Conservation Studio in Doylestown, Pa., now presents a special summer exhibition of works by local artist Trisha Vergis.

Vergis, born in 1962, is an American painter, master woodcarver, and conservator based in Hunterdon County and Bucks County, Pa.

Having studied her craftsmanship and painting skills at institutions including Ursinus College, PAFA, Moore College of Art, and Philadelphia College of Art, as well as in her apprenticeships with master carvers, painters, and conservators, her talent was awarded with the 2017 Best of Show at Ellarslie, Trenton City Museum; Best of Show and First Place awards at Tinicum Arts Festival; and numerous inclusions at Phillips Mill Exhibitions. In addition, she has exhibited in solo shows throughout her career. more

“THE STORY BEHIND THE ART”: This work by Bhagyashri Guhagarkar, inspired by blown-glass flowers, is featured in the annual Artists’ Group exhibit at Plainsboro Public Library, on view August 31 through October 2. A reception will be held on Sunday, September 8 from 2 to 4 p.m.

At the annual Artists’ Group exhibit at Plainsboro Library, approximately 25 participating artists from the West Windsor-Plainsboro area and beyond will share a little background about the piece they enter. Accompanying each piece of art will be written remarks explaining “The Story Behind the Art,” this year’s theme. The short commentaries may focus on the materials used, the artist’s technique, or the thoughts that drove them to create the image.

The show runs August 31 through October 2. A reception will be held Sunday, September 8, 2 to 4 p.m. more

August 14, 2019

By Stuart Mitchner

You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, you just might find, you get what you need.
—The Rolling Stones

After last week’s news of Toni Morrison’s death, I put aside plans for a column on Woodstock and went to the Princeton Public Library looking for one of her novels, preferably Beloved, which I’d never read. My better-late-than-never mission was delusional because there was no way I could do right by a novel of that magnitude in a matter of days, and in any case, the shelves had been cleared of her fiction, no surprise given the PU Professor Emerita’s literary stature and the town’s pride in a former resident. Aside from audio books, the only work of hers available was The Origin of Others (Harvard Univ. Press 2017), which draws on the six Norton Lectures the Nobel laureate delivered at Harvard in spring 2016. That this little book was still there reinforces my semi-superstitious belief that I can always count on the library to give me what I need even when it’s not what I think I want.

What I needed, among other things, was a way to make sense of my inability to literally get into Morrison’s best-known and most acclaimed novel. My problem was that the opening of Beloved seemed to be a contradiction in terms. The first paragraph simply didn’t open for me. I couldn’t get in the door. I know I should have made more of an effort, but all I saw was an enigmatic number: “124 was spiteful. Full of a baby’s venom.” What follows — about a grandmother named Baby Suggs suspended “between the nastiness of life and the meanness of the dead, who couldn’t get interested in leaving life or living it” — left me in the dark. If I’d read farther, I’d have learned that 124 was the street number for what was, in effect, a haunted house. But I didn’t read farther.

I was reminded of my experience with the opening of William Faulkner’s The Sound and the Fury when I first ran headlong into it as a college sophomore: “Through the fence, between the curling flower spaces, I could see them hitting. They were coming toward where the flag was and I went along the fence. Luster was hunting in the grass by the flower tree.” What flag? Who was hitting what? Who was Luster? Of course once I learned that I was seeing with the eyes of a deaf mute at a golf course, I was at least through the door and into a world so many-leveled and many-voiced that for the first time in my life I started rereading a novel the same day I finished it.  more

“TOPDOG/UNDERDOG”: Performances are underway for Princeton Summer Theater’s production of “Topdog/Underdog.” Directed by Lori Elizabeth Parquet, the play runs through August 18 at Princeton University’s Hamilton Murray Theater. Brothers Lincoln (Nathaniel J. Ryan, left) and Booth (Travis Raeburn, right) stare each other down during a game of three-card monte. (Photo by Kirsten Traudt)

By Donald H. Sanborn III

Princeton Summer Theater is concluding its 2019 season with a gripping production of Topdog/Underdog. This edgy, character-driven drama, which depicts the relationship between two African American brothers, is an apt fit for a season whose mission has been to “explore love in all its forms.”

Topdog/Underdog played on Broadway in 2002. It earned playwright Suzan-Lori Parks the Pulitzer Prize, as well as the Outer Critics Circle Award.

Lincoln is a former three-card monte hustler who now earns money at a carnival arcade by impersonating the famous president for whom he is named. This entails wearing whiteface and pretending to be shot.

Booth — the younger brother — has not given up three-card monte, and aspires to emulate his brother’s former success at the game. In his apartment he ceaselessly practices dealing cards, and luring potential victims with smooth chatter, although we will discover that in the past there was a crucial moment in which his skill drastically fell short of his ambition. He persists in attempting to persuade Lincoln to abandon his current occupation and join him. more

With two stages, six bands, Music Fest Princeton returns to Palmer Square on Sunday, September 15. The festival pays homage to famed musical acts from the Garden State.

The show’s headliner, The B Street Band, pays tribute to Asbury Park’s Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band. Also scheduled is a tribute to the songs of Hoboken native Frank Sinatra by Swingadelic, a jazz swing band from New York City.

The family-friendly festival will have two stages, food and beverage vendors, retail offerings, and activity tables from around Palmer Square. more

The West Windsor Arts Council’s Out of This World Performance Troupe, composed of local teenagers, performs “Music Through the Decades,” a revue of favorite show tunes, on Saturday, August 24, at the Nassau Park Pavilion [between Target and Panera], Route 1 South. The performance is from 7 to 8 p.m.

“The goal of the program is to strengthen our young performers’ Broadway repertoire and guide them through staging and choreography. We are looking forward to putting on a great show that gives everyone a chance to shine,” said director Ellen Renee. Under her tutelage, many of Renee’s students have gone on to professional careers on stage, in print, and on television. 

The production will feature professional sound and lights as well as a special guest appearance by Kyle Alexxander, who has been performing since a young age under Renee’s training and coaching. Alexxander’s credits include Walt Disney World, supporting the ensemble of Broadway’s Mary Poppins Main Street USA televised Christmas Day Parade Broadway, and singing pop punk tunes on the main stage of the Seaside Heights Music Festival.

Admission is free. For more information, call (609) 716-1931 or visit westwindsorarts.org.

“CHAPLIN’S MEADOWS” This watercolor by Harry Leith-Ross (1886-1973) is featured in “Harry Leith-Ross: Scenes from Country Life,” on view at the Michener Art Museum in Doylestown, Pa., through February 2020. The works in the exhibit depict locations in Holland, Scotland, Nova Scotia, New Hope, and Doylestown, among others.

The Michener Art Museum in Doylestown, Pa., presents “Harry Leith-Ross: Scenes from Country Life,” on view in the Pfundt Gallery through February 2020.

Featuring drawings and watercolors primarily from the Museum’s permanent collection, the exhibition illuminates the artistic process and skilled draftsmanship of the painter Harry Leith-Ross (1886-1973). Born in the former British colony of Mauritius, Leith-Ross grew up in Scotland and England before moving to the United States in 1903. After working as a commercial artist and studying painting in Paris, he enrolled in the Art Students League’s summer school at Woodstock, N.Y., in 1913 and began exhibiting in New York and Philadelphia. more

“BY THE SEA”: This photo by Heidi Sussman is featured “New Jersey Photography Forum — A 25-Year Retrospective,” on view September 15 to November 10 in the Trenton City Museum at Ellarslie Mansion in Cadwalader Park. The exhibit will feature nearly 100 works ranging from film and digital imagery to alternative processes such as cyanotype, glass fusion, and hand coloring.

The Trenton Museum Society will present “New Jersey Photography Forum — A 25-Year Retrospective” from September 15 to November 10 in the Trenton City Museum at Ellarslie Mansion. The museum is located in Cadwalader Park at 299 Parkside Avenue, Trenton. Admission is free, with donations welcome.

The exhibit’s nearly 100 works range from film and digital imagery to alternative processes such as cyanotype, glass fusion, and hand coloring, and will represent the 25 years since the New Jersey Photography Forum’s (NJPF’s) 1994 founding.  more

August 7, 2019

By Stuart Mitchner

It’s so fine, it’s sunshine, it’s the word love….
—John Lennon, from “The Word”

When I began writing this column on Thursday, August 1, an hour into Herman Melville’s 200th birthday, I’d been reading Philip Hoare’s celebration of Moby-Dick in the online July 30 Guardian, where he says he “fell in love with Melville” as much as “he had fallen in love with whales.” With the combination of love and Melville in mind, I had my subject. Two days later, the mass shooting in El Paso followed by Sunday’s in Dayton put hate in the headlines. The news cycle’s massive dissemination of love’s opposite only underscores the enduring power and significance of one of the most casually abused, glorified and degraded verbs in the language. Even so, it remains remarkably durable. John Lennon and the Beatles made an anthem of it in “All You Need Is Love” after paying tribute to it in “The Word.” When Lennon sings, “Everywhere I go I hear it said, in the good and the bad books, that I have read,” I’m thinking of what Melville said after finishing Moby-Dick: “I have written a wicked book and feel as spotless as the lamb.” more