May 10, 2023

Works by Carney, Maneva In “Form and Foundation”

“PALMER SQUARE”: This Minwax stain on wood work by Sean Carney is featured in “Form and Foundation,” his joint exhibition with Henrieta Maneva, on view May 13 through June 10 in the Arts Council of Princeton’s Taplin Gallery. An opening reception is on Saturday, May 13 from 3 to 5 p.m.

The Arts Council of Princeton will show “Form and Foundation,” a dual exhibition of paintings from New Jersey artists Sean Carney and Henrieta Maneva, May 13 through June 10 in the Taplin Gallery.

The public is invited to an opening reception on Saturday, May 13 from 3 to 5 p.m.

Through the delicate strokes of watercolor and the rich hues of wood stain, these New Jersey-based artists capture the essence of city life with stunning realism. Each piece is a testament to the mastery of their craft, showcasing the intricate details of form and the solid foundation of structure.

Carney paints places he loves, many of which attendees will recognize as regional landmarks. “The buildings, the boats and shorelines are just place markers for memories that I share with special people in my life,” he said. “I enjoy taking in my surroundings and imagine painting them. These paintings are my connections to the past and an unbreakable bond to my work.”

Carney’s process is his and his alone: he paints with Minwax wood stain and a Dremel. “My paintings look like traditional paintings from a distance, but upon closer inspection you gain a realization that they are not traditional at all,” he said. “It is that moment of contemplation that drives me to continue my growth and development.”

For Maneva, her work captures travels less local. “I adore painting, especially with watercolor and ink (sepia),” she said. “In particular, I enjoy the process of my mini recreation, which for me is actually more a discovery, because watercolor is something relatively new to me. I admire the delicacy, the ethereality, and the transparency of aquarelle. I look at a watercolor painting as a breathing, mystical creature that wants to be discovered.”

Picasso’s quote of “Painting is just another way of keeping a diary” applies to Maneva. “I love to travel to different countries, meet different people, and explore different cultures,” she said. “I love the architecture, the atmosphere, and the spirit of the old cities. I admire the human genius, soul, and patience. I am in awe in front of immortal spirit of the Creator, the artist, the architect and all the people who build these stately, magnificent cathedrals and buildings in general, and how strong their belief and infinite their patience was. I admire the unprecedented work, pure genius, and talents of Michelangelo, John Ruskin, Gaudi and their unique style used to recreate something immortal, the people’s belief in God, in the Creator, in nature.

“For reference, I use my own or my friends’ photos (they know my passion and keep me very busy). I wish I had enough time to paint buildings in every country that I visit. For me, painting architecture in watercolor is the best way to combine my two passions and keep my diary alive.” 

The Arts Council of Princeton, 102 Witherspoon Street, is free and open to the public. Gallery hours are Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; and Sunday 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. For more information, visit