Joyce Scott was an Artist in Vitro

KEK4257Sculptor, printmaker, installation artist, performer, quilt maker, storyteller, and jeweler Joyce J. Scott affirms the femininity of her forebears, giving them the finery they deserve,  in Harriet Tubman and Other Truths at Grounds for Sculpture. She describers the installation “Harriet’s Closet” as a “dream boudoir” for Harriet Tubman, the “inner sanctum of a great lady,” with such items as quilts, shawls, hats, beads and a rifle. (Full story at HYPERALLERGIC.)

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Telling the story of Paul Robeson’s Home

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Photographer Wendel White shot artifacts unearthed in the Princeton, NJ house where Paul Robeson was born and projects these images against the façade of the house as part of the exhibition Reconstructed History.  Story at HYPERALLERGIC.

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Anatolian recipes tell story of civilization

 

Anatolian kitchen

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It all begins with Aleppo pepper, a key ingredient in Anatolian cuisine—but in rare supply since the Syrian conflict. Peppers were first discovered in the New World and made their way East with Christopher Columbus, from Spain into North Africa and the Ottoman Empire, where growing conditions were ideal. As the peppers cross-bred, new varieties evolved, such as the Aleppo, known for its fruity and bright qualities. As such, it’s even made it back home to the Americas, where it is now sorely missed.

But Joy E. Stocke, co-author with Angie Brenner of “Tree of Life: Turkish Home Cooking” (Burgess Lea Press, 2017), will not be daunted. She experiments with Maras, a Turkish Continue reading

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Simply described, a croque monsieur is a grilled ham-and-cheese sandwich, albeit made with French ham and Gruyere. Literally translated as “crunch sir” or “bite (a) man,” the croquet monsieur is as ubiquitous in French cafes as grilled cheese or Ruben sandwiches in American diners.

The croquet monsieur—along with its sister, the croque madame—can now be ordered at Cargot, Princeton’s newest fine dining establishment, as well as other foods that tip Continue reading

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Best View of Trenton’s ‘Central Park’

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There are many ways to get to Trenton’s Cadwalader Park, whether cycling along  the D&R Canal State Park or following the winding path to Ellarslie, the Trenton City Museum.

This summer, Ellarslie has launched an ambitious exhibition, Cadwalader Park: An Olmsted Vision, on view through September 17, with an opening reception Saturday, July 15, 6-9 p.m.

At 109.5 acres, Cadwalader Park is the largest park in the City of Trenton, beloved by those who recall pony rides, picnics, concerts and the balloon man, the monkey house Continue reading

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Stories Waiting to be Told

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ONE summer, while visiting her son, daughter-in-law and grandchild in Italy, Rhoda Kassof-Isaac picked up a stone. In its contours she saw faces: eyes, a high hat, an expressive mouth — people with a story waiting to be told. So the Jungian psychoanalyst and artist  painted a face on the small rock.

“It was just a matter of paying attention to what the stone revealed about itself and then drawing it on,” she says.

Soon, it became an obsession, and she began collecting stones in Switzerland, Germany and New Jersey, including outside Stonebridge at Montgomery, where she lives. “It was so much fun, I would put the stones in my pocket and then work on them while waiting in a Continue reading

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Ceramic Evolution from Toilet and Tea Cup

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From the 19th to the early 20th century, Trenton was one of two major pottery centers in the U.S. (the other being in East Liverpool, Ohio). Its products were shipped all over the country and at its zenith, in the 1920s, Trenton had more than 50 potteries. Everything from teacups to tiles and toilets was made here. Indeed it was in Trenton where the flush mechanism for the toilet was refined.

And while the first bathtub to be installed in the White House was made in Trenton, the capital city also pioneered the development of art porcelain through the introduction in 1882 of “Belleek” china, using techniques developed in Ireland. Among the well-known Trenton potteries were Lenox, Fulper & Stangl, and Boehm. President Nixon gave Boehm “Mute Swan” figures to the Republic of China when he normalized relations. These products and their history are documented in permanent displays on the second-floor galleries at Ellarslie.

Through April 30, however, Breath of Fire, an exhibit of works by 12 contemporary ceramic artists in the Greater Trenton Region—including mythic faces, expressive torsos, flasks Continue reading

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Interwoven Stories

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Participating in a community-wide art project hasn’t been this much fun since the creation of “Happy World,” the mural in the Princeton Public Library made by artist Ik-Joong Kang and comprised of square tiles embellished with artifacts contributed by area residents.

For “Interwoven Stories,” under the direction of Diana Weymar, the Arts Council of Princeton Spring 2016 Artist-in-Residence, participants have been invited to embroider a cultural map or a personal page that Weymar will compile into a larger body of work. “I wanted to create a project using an ‘ancient technology’ in a contemporary setting,” she said.

Participants have picked up their “pages”—an 8 ½-by-11-inch sheet of cotton muslin Continue reading

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Musical Lines Make Waves

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It was the third week in January, and artist Marsha Levin-Rojer was excited to be returning to her studio, where she hadn’t been since the unexpected passing of her husband, Charles Rojer, in November. Yet Charles is still with her, she freely admits. She is surrounded by sculpture the otolaryngologist made when he took classes at the Abington Art Center. A ceramic woman’s head, black as onyx, sits on a spiral wooden pedestal. “He gave it to me for my birthday when we were dating. The only reason he married me,” she Continue reading

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Trenton Makes America’s First Sportscar

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George Ott of Hamilton, New Jersey, in his 1920 Raceabout at Ellarslie, the Trenton City Museum in Cadwalader Park.

If historic preservationist Clifford Zink could travel back in time, he’d have to make at least three stops in New Jersey’s capital city. He’d want to land in 1845, at the site of what is now Waterfront Park, where Peter Cooper started a rolling iron mill. “They were rolling the first I-beams in America,” says Zink. “I’d want to walk around that factory and see the steam-powered operations.”

Next, he’d want to get off the time machine in 1849, to see Brooklyn Bridge designer John A. Roebling & Sons build the largest wire rope factory in the world. Today, Roebling Market occupies that space; Zink offers an historic tour of Roebling Iron Works each year during the annual Art All Night event in Trenton.

His time travels wouldn’t be complete without a stop in 1912 at the Mercer factory on Whitehead Road. “They made about 500 cars a year—that’s about two a day—by hand,” Continue reading

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