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Hunterdon Art Museum Celebrates 70 Years with New Exhibitions, Terrace Mural Unveiling

originally published: 09/24/2023

Hunterdon Art Museum Celebrates 70 Years with New Exhibitions, Terrace Mural Unveiling

Phillip Adams, Sunny Day, 2022, Charcoal and acrylic on panel, 48” x 24”, Courtesy of the artist

(CLINTON, NJ) -- On Sunday, October 1, 2023 from 2:00pm-5:00pm, the Hunterdon Art Museum invites the public to the opening of four new exhibitions and the unveiling of a 90-foot mural constructed on its terrace wall bordering the river.

"Phillip Adams: Leave No Trace" delves into humanity’s intricate bond with nature, highlighting our impulses to both nurture and alter our natural surroundings. "Marsha Goldberg & Andrew Zimmerman: Taking Shape" brings together Goldberg’s layered acrylic paintings on Yupo paper and Zimmerman’s painted wood sculptures, both artists exploring the dynamics of color, shape, and space. "Ahrong Kim: Over the Paper Plane" presents ceramic figurative sculptures that narrate a diary of emotions, while the “2023 Members Exhibition” celebrates the diverse artistic talents of the museum’s members.

Alongside the exhibition openings, the museum will mark its 70th anniversary with a festive celebration on the terrace. Starting at 2:00pm, attendees can enjoy live performances by the New Road Band, sip on unique cocktails from ArtBar, and savor mixed culture dishes from Ms. Fu's Yummy Food Truck. Gallery talks with the exhibiting artists will also be part of the day's offerings.

"Wild Ride" Mural by Phillip Adams

Drawing inspiration from the South Branch of the Raritan River that flows behind the museum's wall, Phillip Adams presents "Wild Ride." This 90-foot mural captures the essence of a river cascading naturally downstream, evoking memories of a time predating the mills and the man-made dam. It serves as a poignant reminder of humanity's transformative impact on the environment and underscores our responsibilities in adapting to these changes.

Water, as depicted in the mural, is more than just a life source; it's an embodiment of energy, reflection, healing, rebirth, power, and life. This mirrors the profound connection between art and its viewer, where both are intertwined in a dance of interpretation and creation.

The mural also includes a fleet of origami boats, floating downstream, symbolizing creativity, curiosity, and wonder. These boats resonate with the museum's core mission to educate, challenge, and inspire community through the arts. The boats' colors, aligned with the spectrum of the rainbow, hold symbolic significance. With violet positioned closest to the museum and red radiating outward, they signify the museum's expansive influence and outreach into the community.

Phillip Adams: Leave No Trace (Main Gallery)



 
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In "Leave No Trace," Adams explores the intricate relationship between humans and nature. He explores our inherent impulses to control, reshape, and at times, destroy the landscapes we claim to steward. The works in this exhibition present a paradox - the human desire to leave a permanent mark juxtaposed against the pursuit of untouched, idyllic beauty. With overtones addressing the pressing climate crisis, Adams' art balances the gravity of our rapidly changing environments with whimsical, playful elements.

Drawing inspiration from early theories of the Sublime, the landscapes in this exhibition evoke a sense of awe, beauty, and terror. Adams constructs these compositions based on real places, using photographs from his personal adventures and historical images. The materials chosen, primarily charcoal, graphite, and acrylic on wood panels, resonate with the themes of the exhibition.

Hunterdon Art Museum Celebrates 70 Years with New Exhibitions, Terrace Mural Unveiling

Adams writes, “The use of charcoal and graphite [in my work] links the materiality of carbon to the imagery, further connecting my work in an elemental and fragile way… The work is created meticulously and carefully by building layers of small mark-making that reverberate the care, anxiety, and enormity I feel about the subject matter.”

Phillip Adams, a renowned visual artist and muralist from Philadelphia, has showcased his work in venues like the Woodmere Museum and the Institute of Contemporary Art. His recent exhibition at Schmidt Dean Gallery in 2022 received notable acclaim. With over two decades in public art, Adams' murals are featured from Philadelphia to Montréal, collaborating with clients such as Starbucks and the U.S. Federal Government. An alumnus of the University of Georgia and the University of Pennsylvania, Adams continues to shape the contemporary art scene.

Learn more about Phillip Adams at phillipadams.com.

Marsha Goldberg & Andrew Zimmerman: Taking Shape (First Floor Gallery)

"Taking Shape" is a two-person exhibition that brings together the distinctive works of Marsha Goldberg and Andrew Zimmerman. While both artists differ in their mediums and techniques, they converge in their exploration of form, color, and space, creating a harmonious dialogue between their pieces.



 
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Marsha Goldberg's work is deeply influenced by the architecture of the south of France, particularly the imposing Fort St. Jean in Marseille. Her pieces, rooted in the observation of form, light, and color, have evolved to become more intuitive and self-referential over time. Goldberg employs tools and techniques once used by graphic artists, such as circle templates and grids. This connection to once-practical, now obsolete skills gives her work a unique depth, assigning these tools new meaning in the contemporary art world. The meticulous process of completing each circle individually transforms her pieces into a testament to the passage of time, with each shift in color or completed shape marking hours or even days of work. This deliberate approach results in a palpable tension and balance within her art, each piece a reflection of carefully considered choices. Learn more about Marsha Goldberg at marshagoldberg.com.

Andrew Zimmerman's work delves into the intersection of various dichotomies: painting and sculpture, art and design, hand-made and mass-produced. He thrives on the tension that emerges from positioning his pieces between these categories, aiming to create moments of unexpected discovery within a language of reconstructable forms. Throughout his career, Zimmerman has been drawn to materials that challenge traditional art-making conventions, recently gravitating towards automotive paint and wood. His fabrication process, while utilizing handheld tools, introduces subtle variations in line that emphasize the unique touch of the artist. By repurposing commercial systems, Zimmerman crafts singular modes of expression, highlighting the individuality inherent in each piece. Learn more about Andrew Zimmerman at andrewzimmermanart.com.

Hunterdon Art Museum Celebrates 70 Years with New Exhibitions, Terrace Mural Unveiling

Andrew Zimmerman; Black, Orange, Blue, Red and Green, 2023; Automotive paint on wood; 19 ½” x 15 ½” x 2 ¾” Courtesy of the artist

Together, Goldberg and Zimmerman's works in "Taking Shape" offer viewers a rich exploration of form and color, each piece a testament to the artists' unique perspectives and processes.

Ahrong Kim: Over the Paper Plane (Second Floor River Gallery)

The ceramic figurative sculptures of Ahrong Kim serve as a diary of emotions, capturing the diverse range of feelings humans experience. Drawing from psychological observations, Kim's works reveal an abstracted version of her inner self. The ceramic works, created with endurance and transformed by fire, embody the artist's will and passion. Through her art, Kim seeks to express the myriad of psychological states present in our environment using colors and figurative forms.

Throughout her career, Kim has delved deep into her inner dialogue, crafting figures that levitate, stand upside down, or sometimes appear headless or bodiless. Yet, despite these unconventional forms, there's an inherent playfulness in her work. Far from being unsettling, her sculptures exude a light-heartedness, perhaps attributed to the vibrant flowered patterns and geometric prints that adorn them.

Hunterdon Art Museum Celebrates 70 Years with New Exhibitions, Terrace Mural Unveiling

Ahrong Kim; Thought Bubble, 2023; Porcelain glaze, luster, resin/hand-built, cone 6 electric; 9" x 8" x 15” Courtesy of the artist

These patterns are a nod to her rich Korean heritage. The lively multi-colored abstract designs draw inspiration from jogakbo, a traditional Korean patchwork. As a child, she observed her grandmother, a seamstress to the Vice President of South Korea, incorporate this stitch into her creations.

Ahrong Kim, a New York-based artist originally from South Korea, holds a BFA from Kon Kuk University and an MFA from the Rhode Island School of Design. Her distinguished works have been exhibited at venues such as Kristen Lorello, NY, and George Billis Gallery, NY. Kim has completed notable residencies at Guldagergaard, Denmark, and Harvard University. A former artist-in-residence and instructor at The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, she has received accolades including the Excellence in Clay award from the Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show. Her works grace collections at the RISD Museum and Fuller Craft Museum, among others.



 
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Learn more about Ahrong Kim at ahrongkim.com.

2023 Members Exhibition (Third Floor Gallery)

The Hunterdon Art Museum’s annual “Members Exhibition” celebrates the diverse talents of its artist members. This year, the exhibition features works in various media, from photography and sculpture to printmaking and collage. João (Juno) Zago, artist and Creative Director at Gallery Aferro in Newark, juried this year's exhibition, selecting 33 artists from over 100 entries. One of these artists will be chosen on October 1 for a future solo exhibition at HAM.

The Hunterdon Art Museum presents changing exhibitions of contemporary art, craft, and design in a 19th-century stone mill that is on the National Register of Historic Places.  A landmark regional art center since 1953, HAM showcases works by established and emerging contemporary artists and also offers a dynamic schedule of classes and workshops for children, teens, and adults.

Hunterdon Art Museum is located at 7 Lower Center Street, Clinton, NJ 08809. The galleries are open to the public Wednesday - Sunday, 11:00am - 5:00pm. Admission: $7 adults, $5 seniors (65+)/military personnel/students, free for children under 12.

Programs are made possible in part by funds from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts; Hyde and Watson Foundation; The Large Foundation; and The Holt Foundation, along with other corporations, foundations and individuals.  


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