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Cloud 9: Gallery Aferro’s 9th Annual Art Auction Fundraiser

June 17th, 2017
VIP Preview 6PM – 7PM
Auction 7PM – 9:30PM

Gallery Aferro excited to announce the 9th Annual Benefit Art Auction and Party on June 17th, 2017, with our honoree Ron Beit, of RBH Group. As President and CEO of RBH Group, Ron Beit is proud to support Gallery Aferro as an anchor in RBH’s portfolio of social impact investing in downtown Newark. “Eleven years ago co-owners Evonne Davis and Emma Wilcox approached me with a proposal to create a community-centric gallery and creative arts space in the heart of our downtown development portfolio.” Ron Beit says.  “Through hard work and dedication to embracing local talent, as well as featuring the work of emerging and better-known artists in our region, Gallery Aferro was a key player in making Newark a top-10 Hotbed of American’s Arts and Culture, according to the 2017 report of the National Center for Arts Research.  Thanks to the creative vision of Gallery Aferro and their role within the Newark Arts consortium, Newark now ranks higher on the arts vibrancy index than cities such as Seattle, Philadelphia, Cambridge, Portland, Chicago and Pittsburgh.”

The festive event features an exciting auction of hundreds of artworks by emerging and established artists, music by DJ John Butler, and catering by Clint Feastgood and the Mozzarella God, all proud NJ natives, and dozens of wonderful door and raffle prizes.

All proceeds from tickets and purchases make possible Gallery Aferro’s year-round exhibitions and wide range of public events, artist residencies, publications, public art, educational offerings, and innovative, community-responsive projects such as our mobile portrait studio. Founded in 2003, and located downtown since 2006, the gallery has received 5 back-to-back Citations of Excellence from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts and has been described by Inside New Jersey magazine as offering “a dizzying array of contemporary art.” The Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation has praised our “expansive vision, impact in Newark as well as regionally and even internationally”, and our “exemplary mentoring opportunities for young artists.” Radius magazine has described the gallery as a place where “exuberant extremes of age and background come together,” and Brick City Live has commented on our “community-minded, experimental, collaborative, and DIY ethos.”

For one night only unique artworks will be available at prices that will enlarge or establish your collection. Delight a friend, colleague or loved one with the gift of artwork. Bring someone who’s never been to the gallery, or to Newark, or someone you come with every year. Support the free exchange of ideas: Mom said to share! Dance and have fun.


Delores Lady Low res

A Retrospective
Dolores Stewart

Curated by Evonne M. Davis

Gallery Aferro, Main Gallery
April 28th – May 27th, 2017
Opening Reception April 28th, 5-9pm


For Immediate Release: Gallery Aferro launches a 2017-18 quartet of solo shows by multiple generations of women artists of color, beginning with an extensive retrospective of ceramic sculptures by Dolores Stewart.

Born in 1932, Stewart’s work reflects life. She uses her recollections of her children’s youth, and those of her own happy childhood to create moving sculptures that evoke the African-American family experience. Her observations of people derive from her own family members, but also from history, mythology, and the changing social conditions of the world around her.  With several distinctive styles in use, her visualization of her pieces allows her to approach each one with fresh insight into the story that she is telling.

A 1952 graduate of Newark’s Arts High School, the first magnet arts school in the nation, Stewart continued her study of art at iconic institutions: The New School as well as the DuCret Art School, the Newark School of Fine and Industrial Arts, the Arts Student League, and most recently, with an ongoing engagement with the Visual Arts Center of NJ.

She has exhibited throughout the region, winning prizes frequently at the Plainfield Outdoor Show, the Parkway Festival of Art, Art in the Atrium, and at galleries in Atlantic City, Westfield and Summit, NJ. Her work is in significant collections throughout the northeast, and has been exhibited at the Newark Museum, the Montclair Art Museum, and the Morris Museum. She is a past member of the Tweed Gallery in Plainfield, NJ, and has been featured in multiple television stories, including the Steve Adubato Show on Channel 13, NJTV, and NBC Nightly News, and is included in two books on women sculptors. Most recently, she was included in a multiple location project by Women in Media, “Women in the World: a Visual Perspective”, curated by Adrienne Wheeler and Gladys Barker-Grauer at Rutgers University-Newark’s Paul Robeson Art Galleries.

She states that “My sculptures are a true dramatization of the American culture. More specifically, my technique lends itself to capturing the soulful nature of the human spirit.” Now an octogenarian, Stewart resides in Plainfield, New Jersey and is the mother of two sons, and grandmother to three grandchildren.

Market low res

Backwards View
Emma Wilcox

Curated by Evonne M. Davis

Gallery Aferro, Liminal Gallery
April 28th – May 26th, 2017
Opening Reception April 28th, 5-9pm

Emma Wilcox is a photographer concerned with environmental justice, land usage, eminent domain, and the role of individual memory in the creation of local history. Her solo exhibitions include Where it Falls, The Print Center, Philadelphia, PA and William Patterson University Galleries, Wayne, NJ, 2012, Emma Wilcox, 2010 at Gitterman Gallery, New York, NY, Salvage Rights, Real Art Ways, Hartford, CT, 2009 and Forensic Landscapes, Jersey City Museum, 2007. She is the recipient of a Harpo Foundation Grant, a NoMAA Creative Grant, a NJ State Arts Council Fellowship for photography, the Camera Club Of NY residency, the Newark Museum Residency and was a core participant in Night School at the New Museum in 2008. Her work has been reviewed and featured in Art In America, American Suburb X, and the New Yorker’s photo blog, Photo Booth, Women in Photography, Low Life, Black and White Magazine, and others. She has written for Bomb Magazine, Zing Magazine, and Influence. She participated in Emerge 7, Aljira, Newark, NJ and AIM 29, Bronx Museum, Bronx, NY. She is also co-founder, with Evonne M. Davis, of Gallery Aferro, a Newark, NJ alternative space. She lives by the river.

Wilcox writes “The work here isn’t new, consisting of images made from roughly 2005 – 2012. It hasn’t been much exhibited in Newark, which it depicts primarily though not exclusively. A “backwards view” has various meanings; either a retrograde, uninformed opinion, or accessing what is past, either visually or intellectually. It feels appropriate given events both local and national to consider what it is to remember, and to retain a record, whether visual, textual, or otherwise. What do you remember that has disappeared from view?”

She is interested in the density of the landscape: chemically, visually, textually. This density of markings includes human bodies, geological timekeeping, stories told in bars, news archives, and EPA documents. She makes photographs at or near night, on foot or via helicopter, and within a 5-mile radius of Newark. She makes photographs of things that can always be found, and are always about to vanish.


Only Home

Kevin Durkin
Curated by Jacob Mandel

Gallery Aferro, Main Gallery
February 11th – April 1st, 2017
Opening Reception February 11th, 7-10pm

Kevin Durkin creates work that centers around an abstract sense of nostalgia and memory. The work resurrects moments that may not have occurred, may never occur, but still feel vaguely familiar, landing somewhere between reality and fantasy. Years go by and the concept of home is manipulated and transformed until it can, at times, feel unrecognizable. It may no longer be a place you know, but a brief moment in time, when even a sound, or a flash of color can bring you somewhere you’ve been before.

Durkin’s work goes there and beyond, creating landscapes of places we have yet to go, but might feel just as comfortable. Having dealt with various forms of loss of the concept of a home, his work comes from the most personal of places, while at the same time bringing the viewer an undeniably universal experience.

Kevin Durkin is a multidisciplinary artist working in Newark, New Jersey. Durkin was born February 18, 1988 in Portland, Oregon. Raised in Northwestern New Jersey he went on to study graphic design at The Art Institute of Philadelphia. While there he found himself creating more conceptually, working with non-commercial themes in digital art pieces. Taking that process a step further he switched to analog, utilizing painting and drawing as a way to grant himself more freedom from the constraints of the digital medium. He has been an artist in residence at Index Art Center in Newark, New Jersey since 2014.


Respond In Kind

Jacob Mandel
Curated by Evonne M. Davis

Gallery Aferro, Liminal Gallery
February 11th – April 1st, 2017
Opening Reception February 11th, 7-10pm

Jacob Mandel’s work focuses on ideas, introspection, memory, and emotions. Through his practice he reflects on experiential phenomenon using photography as a parallel to the way we see the world. His work is influenced by a passion for the history of photography, and a constant engagement with attempting to define his perception of the world around him. Mandel believes photographic processes can be used to subvert expectations of what a photograph can or must do. Through that contradiction of purpose he believes his artwork mirrors our own understanding, and misunderstanding, of the world around us. Experimentation is crucial to Jacob’s artistic practice and pushing the boundaries of his vision is something he strives for constantly. Jacob also combines media and images, layering content, ideas, textures, and processes. This is another way in which he works to create artwork that acts as a mirror to perception while creating a type of visual poetry. Mandel feels that diversity of experience is crucial to one’s ability to empathize and understand other cultures. The layering of media and images in his work is his way of engaging in social awareness. Creating an immersive experience, walking the line between photography, installation, poetry, and illustration, Jacob illustrates his own meditations on understanding and creating one’s identity and introspective consciousness. This work, though deeply personal and specific to his life, creates an allegory for experience that isn’t tethered to one singular type of experience. Through presenting these ideas, Jacob encourages the viewer to look upon themselves and attempt to understand their own place amongst our shared reality.

Elevator Music 3: Studio Sounds

Curated by Dahlia Elsayed
Gallery Aferro, 2nd Floor Installation
October 21st – December 17th, 2016
Opening Reception October 21st 5-9pm

Visiting artists in their studios is a great pleasure for many reasons – seeing works in progress, learning about a process, hearing an artist talk about their ideas. But there is also a voyeuristic aspect to the studio visit – peeking at scribbled notes and sketches, opened books that are lying around, the sounds or smells, revealing the influences on work which may leave no trace in the finished product.

As artists we make things that go out into the world and often live in sanitized, pristine environments of galleries or institutions, disconnected from their physical space of creation. As a curator, Dahlia Elsayed is often equally interested in the conditions of the making of the work as much as the work itself. What does that studio look like? Smell like? Feel like? Sound like?
For this show Dahlia was interested in what artists listen to while working and how the soundscape of a studio might shape the work they make. The participating artists were asked to think about what they hear while working. Was there an artist/station/podcast on heavy rotation or some music they always come back to? Or is it just the ambient sounds of an environment and the sounds of making work? Is there any specific kind of soundscape conducive to working? And what do other studios sound like in different places?

The 14 artists represent a wide range of mediums and approaches, and are working in varied locations- from San Francisco to Istanbul, Brooklyn to Berlin. Elsayed wanted to bring the sounds of those studios into this intimate space, for a shared asynchronous visit to listen in on them working, to hear the invisible soundtrack behind the work we see silently months later.

Anne Louise Blechner, Copenhagen, Denmark
Suzan Batu, Istanbul, Turkey
Silvina Der-Meguerditchian, Berlin, Germany
Aiham Dib, Damascus, Syria
Shady ElNoshakty, Cairo, Egypt
Echo Eggebrecht, Pittsburgh, PA
Mitra Azar, Nomadic Practice
Lauren Kelley, New York, NY
Asuka Ohsawa, San Francisco, CA
Shaw Osha, Olympia, WA
Anne Marte Overaa, Malmo, Sweden
Kameelah Janan Rasheed, Brooklyn, NY
Michael Rodriguez, New York, NY
Vitus Shell, Monroe, LA