Monday, June 6, 2022

SOPAC: Annual Young Artist Exhibition Showcases Renewed Creativity Post-Pandemic Lockdown



Annual Young Artist Exhibition Showcases Renewed Creativity Post-Pandemic Lockdown

High school art students show “who they are personally and artistically, once again.”


[June 6, 2022] The INSPIRED MINDS: Young Artist Exhibition is a visual arts program designed to nurture and enrich the next generation by celebrating young artists in the region. This annual program provides a comprehensive, professional gallery experience to art students from submission, selection, exhibition and possible sale of their artwork.


This year, INSPIRED MINDS returned to The Herb + Milly Iris Gallery at SOPAC for an in-person opening reception and exhibition after two years of drive-through showcases due to Covid-19 restrictions. The 2022 show, on display through August 14, includes more than 70 pieces created by 60 students from 14 Essex County high schools.


“To see the reaction of the art students when they see their work hung in a professional gallery is priceless,” says Jeremy Moss, curator for The Herb + Milly Iris Gallery. “This year's exhibition is the largest ever installed in the gallery and, in my humble opinion, the highest quality work we have had. Bravo to all of the students and their teachers!”


For the opening reception on May 19, 130 guests attended, including students, family members, teachers and district administrators. On that night, 13 pieces of artwork were sold—the most ever at an opening reception for the Iris Gallery.


“The opening reception for Inspired Minds is my favorite evening in the gallery,” says Linda Beard, SOPAC’s Director of Community Engagement. “To see the guests appreciate the students’ artwork and get caught up in the kids’ excitement, and to see that they also want the students to feel celebrated and successful—that’s the kind of impact that feeds my soul.”


Each year, hundreds of submissions are juried by a panel of distinguished artists, photographers, museum curators and arts advocates. The result is an exciting and eclectic body of work from the perspective of emerging artists.


“Participating in the Inspired Minds exhibition is an extremely important part of our art students’ curriculum and a steppingstone to the level of work that can be achieved,” says Arlene Brown, an art educator at Livingston High School.


The challenges of remote and hybrid learning over the past two years have reinforced the importance of arts education and the desire for self-expression.


“There is more variety, creativity and enthusiasm to get great photographs and see the world in different ways,” says Brown. “My students are being who they are personally and artistically, once again.”


April Hart, an art educator at East Orange Campus High School, has noticed the same eagerness in her students. “I definitely saw an uptick within the students to get back to creating,” she says. “The work that my students have been producing has been a lot more personal and light. They’re not stressing over the little things, but just having fun and that’s the most important thing.”


View all the works from this exhibition in our Flickr Gallery. If visitors are interested in making a purchase, they can contact Linda Beard at (973) 382-1035 or lindab@sopacnow.org.




About The Herb + Milly Iris Gallery:

The gallery was initiated by beloved SOPAC board member, Milly Iris. Both Milly and her husband Herb were longtime supporters of SOPAC, avid collectors and devoted arts advocates. The family legacy continues through the generous support of Herb and Milly’s daughters, Roreé and Kerry and The Iris Family Foundation. The gallery is located on the second and third floors of the South Orange Performing Arts Center. The Gallery is free and open from Monday-Saturday, noon– 6PM.


About SOPAC:

Since 2006, SOPAC has been serving as a premier performing arts center in the region. SOPAC offers innovative artistic and cultural experiences for diverse audiences in an intimate, inviting environment. The arts center hosts a variety of live performances, community events and education programs for all ages. SOPAC is home for Seton Hall University Arts Council’s performances, including the Classical Concert Series, Jazz ‘N the Hall performances and Seton Hall University Theatre productions. SOPAC programs are made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Arts and the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. The South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC) is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. For more information, visit SOPACnow.org.



Mark Slade Keller Williams 917.797.5059 Good Homes Selling a Maplewood/South Orange/West Orange area home involves many steps and having an experienced Maplewood New Jersey Real Estate Agent and Realtor®, specializing in the Bedroom Communities of New York City in Essex/Union County— Millburn, Short Hills, Montclair, West Orange, South Orange, Livingston, Maplewood, Springfield, Summit, Madison, Chatham, Scotch Plains, Fanwood, Cranford and Westfield--by your side will make the transaction run a lot smoother. I would love to be your Maplewood/South Orange New Jersey Area Real Estate Professional! I assist both buyers and sellers in the Bedroom Communities of New York City, mostly served by NJ Transit’s Mid-Town Direct Train Lines, offering commutes of 45minute or less to NY Penn Station, with either the purchase and or sale of residential real estate. As an Accredited Buyer’s Agent (ABR), I have received special training to guide and educate you through the entire home buying process. From start to finish, I listen to your needs and desires in what you would like and take the information you give me to find you home. My GO-TO team can provide you the best in Real Estate advice with regard to attorney choices, Home Inspectors and Mortgage Loan Officers I am also a Luxury specialist (CLHMS), I have received special training to guide and educate you through the entire home buying and selling process. Not only does this extra training help me better understand this upper echelon in real estate, its benefit include a special luxury website: www.njluxhomes.com and a corresponding worldwide luxury network that helps to put luxury buyers and sellers together. As your Maplewood/South Orange/ West Orange New Jersey listing agent I am well versed on as your local expert in all things in the West Orange, Maplewood and South Orange area Real Estate Market. You can expect personalized service that includes a detailed consultation on how to best position your Mid-Town Direct home to be competitive in today’s market with training to provide my clients with an in-depth Advanced Comparative Market analysis, and advice on staging. As my office’s technology officer as well as both a Zillow Platinum Premier and Trulia Premier agent, I use the latest and most up-to-date marketing methods to get your home in front of as many buyers as possible. Being your New Jersey Real Estate Agent and Realtor ® not only involves just finding the home or selling the home, but being your guide, negotiator, advisor and advocate and making sure that your needs and goals are met. Being your New Jersey Essex/Union County area Realtor® (with a little bit of Morris County thrown in for good measure) is one of my truest passions, and “Helping You Find Your Dream Home” is my number one priority. Don’t forget These Helpful Sites:


Mark Slade

Mark Slade on ZillowMark Slade, ABR,  Local Expert - Agent with KELLER WILLIAMS Mid-Town Direct Realty

Mark Slade reviews http://search.goodhomesforgoodpeople.com/index.cfm?action=newsearchsession&search_mode=form&primarysearchtype=active&searchtype=city&state=NJ&single_family=y&min_price=0&max_price=1000000000&county=Essex&city=West%20Orange%20Township&resetform=1/lewellyn Mark Slade Keller Williams 917.797.5059 Good Homes Mark Slade
"Mark is an incredible agent. He represented us in purchasing a home in 2015 and in selling that home this Fall (we had to move for work). He was ... more "
by Andrew Pak
"Mark helped me through all stages of buying and selling a home, two difficult and challenging transactions. I have tremendous confidence in him, and ... more "
by user8716562
"Our experience with Mark selling our house could not have been better. In less than a week we had 6 offers over the asking price. He is a pro in every ... more "
by Rodolfo Gils

A picturesque town in Essex County, Maplewood is located on the East Branch of the Rahway River. Originally consisting of farms, mills and orchards, Maplewood is now a great mix of residential and commercial areas, culminating in the jewel of a downtown village and coming together to create a charming, tight-knit and diversified community. Maplewood has predominantly Colonial and Tudor style homes with sprawling porches and ample greenery, but you can also find some Victorians and a range of more modern style construction on its beautiful tree lined streets.

Maplewood is a diverse town with 6 elementary schools and prominent municipal building designed by famous architects, Guilbert and Betelle. In the center of town, famed landscape architects, the Olmstead Brothers, created the breathtaking Memorial Park; not to be overlooked is Ricalton Square, nestled between the train station and the downtown shopping; this area is frequently used for events including a Halloween Parade with hayrides and petting zoos, as well as featuring replica homes during the Winter Holiday Season. The town offers many activities to its residents from camps in the summer, arts and crafts classes, a public pool (with 4 pools ranging from a “baby” pool to toddler pool to large lap pool and a diving tank) and a farmers market when in season. There is even an annual musicalpalooza--Maplewoodstock—scheduled for July 9th and 10th this year, featuring a variety of bands and musical styles, showcasing local and national bands with booths for local businesses to set up.

The Village, also known as Maplewood Center, is a quaint, downtown shopping district with everything from restaurants with foods from all over the world, bakeries, dance studios, gyms, bookstores, a movie theater and bookstores. With its large variety of cuisines to choose from, Maplewood recently started a yearly town-wide Restaurant Week with over 30 eateries participating.

Easily accessible by its throughways and the New Jersey Transit, it's no surprise Maplewood has been ranked several times as one of the most desirable places to live in America by a number of surveys.

No comments:

Post a Comment