(JERSEY CITY, NJ) -- In celebration of Jersey City PRIDE month, Art House Productions presents new work by Jersey City-based steel artist Robert Koch in the Art House Gallery, August 5 - August 27, 2023. At this exhibit, Koch will present a variety of steel sculptures as well as mixed-media paintings.
"Robert’s work is a testament to his dedication as an artist. His beautiful tower-like creations are astonishing, as are his smaller pieces. He works the steel as if it were clay, molding and shaping it into forms that are unlike objects that would come from this rigid material. He is truly a master at his craft," says Gallery Director, Andrea McKenna.
The opening reception will be held on Saturday, August 5, from 5:00pm to 8:00pm. Regular gallery hours are Saturdays and Sundays from 1:00pm to 4:00pm. Attendees can also request an appointment by contacting Gallery Director, Andrea McKenna at email@example.com
Also on August 5, in collaboration with Jersey City Pride, Art House will present the screening of “Strength through Visibility: 20 Years of Pride in Jersey City'' in the Art House Theater from 3:00pm - 4:30pm. A panel discussion with the filmmakers will follow the screening. This documentary chronicles Jersey City Pride’s history, providing a roadmap for people around the world who want to start Pride events in areas with little to no support. “Strength Through Visibility: 20 Years of Pride in Jersey City'' is the winner of the 2023 Garden State Film Festival Homegrown Documentary award. The screening will be free of charge, but interested attendees must RSVP.
All works will be for sale in the Art House Gallery at The Hendrix at 345 Marin Boulevard, Jersey City, NJ 07302. Art House Gallery exhibitions are always free and open to the public.
Large print for all literature regarding their exhibitions and tactile and descriptive tours are available upon request. Email Andrea McKenna for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Growing up in Pennsylvania, Robert Koch became interested in art at an early age. His grandparents’ home was one block away from the studio of Henry Bertoia, and he marveled at the unique and grand bronze sculptures as they were created outside the studio.
He attended Kutztown University where he studied art education. His first and ultimately successful venture as an artist began in 1986 in the kitchen of longtime friends Karen and Bob, who donated their space to allow Robert’s creative side to take flight. Over the course of nearly 20 years, Robert created functional stoneware pottery and traveled the east coast selling work at art festivals. Though he won awards and built a loyal following both locally and regionally, the memories of Bertoia’s work compelled him toward a new path.
In 2000, he registered in a metal sculpting class at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, and he knew immediately that this indeed was a calling. He converted his garage into a sculpting studio by the end of his first semester and continued to produce his popular functional stoneware while developing his sculptural aesthetic. He began entering pieces into competitions and winning awards. In 2004, he made the life-changing decision to move from rural Pennsylvania to the NYC area and transition to Robert Koch Studios as an artist working solely on steel sculpture. He soon garnered representation by prestigious galleries such as Elaine Benson Gallery in Bridgehampton, NY, Charles-Baltivic Gallery in Provincetown, MA, and Broadfoot and Broadfoot in SoHo, NYC. Robert’s list of public and corporate commissions is rapidly growing. His aesthetic goal is to emulate the fluid ebb of water and organic movement within nature as he designs and constructs each unique piece.
Robert’s approach to sculpting is to defy the properties commonly associated with steel. He strives to take a rigid, hard, and lifeless material and convert it into a soft and fluid form. In some work, the steel appears to be trapping the wind; in others, soft boundaries are created between the form and the space it occupies. The organic forms are constructed by combining small sections of steel to create woven textures or shapes that resemble reeds or grasses.
Today, Robert resides at 150 Bay Street in Jersey City, NJ, with his dog, Ivy. His studio is located on the 2nd floor with the entrance at 157 A.
Art House Productions is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to the development and presentation of the performing and visual arts in Jersey City, NJ. Art House Productions presents theater, performing and visual arts festivals, arts events, visual art exhibitions, and adult and youth art classes. For more information about their programs, please stop by the Arts Center at 345 Marin Boulevard in Jersey City.
Art House Productions is generously supported by The New Jersey State Council on the Arts, Public Funds from the Jersey City Arts and Culture Trust Fund, The Princeton Area Community Foundation, SILVERMAN, Liberty Harbor, The Albanese Organization, Starwood Capital, KRE, Exchange Place Alliance, The New Jersey Theatre Alliance, and The Hudson County Office of Cultural Affairs, and more. A full list of funders can be found on their website.