Upcoming Events

2023 Fall Exhibitions Opening Reception

Public Enemy
Curated by Juno Zago

Onward Upward Towards the Light
Curated by Jordan Mayfield  

Dead Ringers: Portraits of Abandoned Payphones
Curated by Juno Zago  

Poem Booth: The F*cking Reticence  
Curated by Emma Wilcox

Elevator Music 11: Lynnée Denise presents Case Studies in
DJ Scholarship: Folk, Funk, and Toni from Ohio
Curated by Juno Zago

Opening Reception
Friday, September 29th, 6-9pm
Gallery Aferro
73 Market St., Newark, NJ

Free and open to everyone!
* Due to rising Covid-19 numbers, masks are encouraged, but not required

Gallery Aferro brings a phenomenal year of milestones and memories to a close with not one, not two, but five extraordinary exhibitions celebrating … well, milestones and memories. On September 29th, this always-innovating alternative arts space invites you to go beyond the conventional to see what truly connects us to our ideas and our ideals. Whether in the form of music, poetry, photography, mixed media or sculpture, the fall season at Aferro has something for everyone.

Illuminating the first floor of Aferro, Public Enemy takes center stage in the Main Gallery as the first solo exhibition by mixed media artist and activist Bleriot Thompson. In this visual deep dive into the Black cultural landscape that constantly defines and redefines what it means to be an American citizen, the artist seeks to create authentic connections between dignity, compassion and understanding.

Thompson’s thought-provoking showcase is buoyed by two unique exhibitions guaranteed to challenge your perspective. Featured in the art-shop-turned-mini-gallery, photographer Amy Becker explores the path of human connection through the remains of obsolescent technology in her solo show, Dead Ringers: Portraits of Abandoned Payphones.

At the opposite end of the gallery, a revivified payphone brings to life The F*cking Reticence, a curation of spoken word artists giving voice to the voiceless in a world where freedom of desire and expression are restricted by privilege and access.

On Aferro’s second floor, two more solo exhibitions guide you along a path to expand your mind while cultivating your soul. Interdisciplinary artist Anjali Benjamin-Webb delves into the indefinable space between matter and the immaterial in Onward Upward Towards the Light. Drawing from a multitude of traditions and fantastical imaginations of the afterlife, this exhibition centers on the universality of death and the stories we tell about where we go.

Combine this singular show with a step inside Elevator Music 11: Lynnée Denise presents Case Studies in DJ Scholarship: Folk, Funk, and Toni from Ohio, an audio installation spotlighting the connection between Ohio musical artists and the words of a 1986 interview with the late great author Toni Morrison. 

The free, all-ages event scheduled from 6-9pm will serve refreshments. Join us!

For more information, contact Juno Zago, Creative Director, (973) 353-9533, jzago@aferro.org.

Image credits, counter-clockwise from top left: Ladders by Amy Becker, Sappho embrassant sa lyre by Jules-Élie Delaunay, Death Chart by Anjali Benjamin-Webb, Chad by Bleriot Thompson and photo courtesy of Lynnee Denise

2023 Fall Open Doors Studio Tour

Sunday, October 1st
12pm – 5pm
Gallery Aferro
73 Market Street, Newark, NJ

Free and open to everyone!
* Due to rising Covid-19 numbers, masks are encouraged, but not required.

Gallery Aferro’s Studio Residency program has been the creative home of inspirational and aspirational artists working, polishing and branding their craft in the heart of downtown Newark for 17 years. Within the walls of this 20,000 sq. ft. building, singular talents have brought to life everything from paper art to sculptures to interactive installations to photography to theatrical productions for the stage. 

And here is your chance to meet, observe and chat with each of our incredible studio residents during the 2023 Newark Arts Festival’s Open Doors Studio Tour event taking place on Sunday, October 1st from 12pm – 5pm. Connect with art and ideas while enjoying free coffee, tea and bagels as you wander the corridors of this 19th-century building in New Jersey’s largest city. 

When you’re not waxing poetic with one of our 18 resident artists including two new Fellowship recipients, take a moment to savor our five amazing new art exhibitions; our Community Book Room containing over 2,000 books, magazines, and journals; or a classic board game from our all-ages games cabinet.

Artists you can visit on October 1st include:

  • Basement: Ken Weathersby, Jo-El Lopez
  • Second Floor: Anne Dushanko Dobek, Noelle Lorraine Williams, Masakhane Center (Organization-in-Residence), Tonya Johnson, Ian King
  • Third Floor: Lisette Morel, Matilda Forsberg,* Amanda Thackray, kara lynch (2023 Lynn and John Kearney Fellow for Equity), Jaz Graf, Hasnat Mehmood (2023 Sustainable Arts Fellow)
  • Fourth Floor: Juno Zago, Bleriot Thompson, Steve Rossi, troizel, Michael K. Taylor

Artist-run Gallery Aferro’s resident alumni now number more than 100 strong and include Fulbright scholars, Eyebeam alumni, and a wonderful cross-section of contemporary practice by different generations of artists. Over the last decade, the program has included two fellowships programs: The Sustainable Arts Fellowship supports artists and writers who are parents, and The Lynn and John Kearney Fellowship for Equity supports women artists of color of any age in support of gender-based, racial and economic justice.

* Unfortunately, this artist-in-residence will not be available to participate in this year’s studio tour.