The Day I Read a Book

Remember that song by Jimmy Durante? “It was contageous, 70 pages, there were pictures here and there so it wasn’t hard to bear… I buried my nose in a book and guess what happened? I forgot what book I buried it in.” You can listen to the song here.

Better yet, see the exhibit on artist books at the Printmaking Council of New Jersey, 440 River Road, Branchburg, through Dec. 5.

Below the Surface is a cooperative book arts exhibition that drew entries from members of either PCNJ or members of The Book Arts Roundtable based in South Orange.

This exhibition offered artists an opportunity to explore the intersection where book arts and the printed surface meet. Each artist was asked to consider what structure or form; what materials; and what content would assist them in understanding and creating work inspired by what lies below the surface.  Some works in the show reflect the passive nature of what is below a surface, while others demonstrated the active process of scratching the surface of things to reveal hidden layers. Many participating artists chose to look into the layers of meaning, as they related to personal experiences.

Four distinguished New Jersey artists — Bonnie Berkowitz, R.D. Burton, Elizabeth Mackie and Barbara Scharf Lehrhoff — collaborated to conceptualize the exhibition. Ms. Berkowitz and Ms. Mackie served as the exhibition’s entry selection committee.

Ms. Berkowitz has been practicing Art Therapy since 1978. She works at the Richard Hall Community Mental Health Center with adolescents and their families and is an instructor at Caldwell College. Ms. Mackie  is a Professor of Art at The College of NJ.

The Printmaking Council is open Tuesdays through Fridays from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m., and on Saturdays from noon to 4 p.m. 908-725-2110;  printnj.org.

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