Dear friends of Gallery Aferro,
We have some important news that we want to share.
As most of you know, because you have generously supported our efforts, Gallery Aferro has been working hard to fund an expansion into additional spaces on our block.
The long-term vision for our expansion has always been to secure a permanent home for the gallery, by modeling a successful community arts hub. Though wonderful and exciting, the 75-77 Market expansion plans were always a temporary plan: a way of pushing five years forward towards a sustainable future.
Now, the gallery is exploring a potential opportunity to pursue a permanent building. This would be amazing.
We believe that as the city changes it is crucial to keep the arts downtown. This means keeping free, high quality cultural experiences accessible. It means ensuring a supply of affordable artist workspace. It means creating and stewarding an environment where grassroots groups can flourish and collaborate. We want you to know that we are still working hard towards that goal, but that this new opportunity is going to change what our trajectory looks like for the next few years. Gallery Aferro has been busier than ever this year- forging new partnerships, growing our base of supporters, and expanding our programming as we also work towards a permanent home. Tangible examples of the values and culture of the expansion include our incubation of grassroots poetry and performance collectives, the opening of our community reading room this year with 1000+ volumes on artmaking and art history, and a variety of new initiatives such as creative green space, a community-based recording studio, a major oral history project, and more.
Thank you for being on this journey with us. We’re going someplace incredible.
Sincerely, Gallery Aferro
Gallery Aferro’s Expansion in The Wall Street Journal!
Gallery Aferro’s Expansion Featured in Newark Bound!
Did You Catch These Awesome Photos in Our Video?
Shoutout to Jason Colbert for these amazing architect renderings of what the expansion will look like! If you’re as excited as we are (we know you are) click here and contribute!
Fine Art Commissions for Expansion Campaign Announced!
We’ve got some awesome perks to thank you for your support. We commissioned Aferro-affiliated artists Jerry Gant, Wendy Letven, Fausto Sevilla, Elizabeth Storm and Joe Waks to create limited edition posters, lovingly printed to a high standard by family-owned local printer Remco Press. We were founded in Newark, we love doing what we do in Newark, and we want each of you who donates to feel that excitement. The posters and other perk items reflect our time and place, this moment of incredible possibility here in NJ’s largest city, the one and only Newark NJ. Visit https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/gallery-aferro-s-90-000-sqft-arts-hub-in-newark to fund our campaign and reserve a poster perk!
Learn more about the artists who made the amazing prints below! (Listed in order from left to right as their pieces appear in image above)
What interests Lizzy most is the lens through which the information of our tangible world is viewed; the vanishing point perspective system.The propor- tions of the perspective system are apparent in the perception of other sen- sory information like sound and most interestingly, the experience of space. By studying the techniques of visual representation, the system of represent- ing a form through light, shade, color, and proportions on a 2-D plane, Lizzy has actively learned a way to perceive and understand information.“When our perception enters the system and contributes to the outcome, the experience, we are connected to a beautifully intricate, chaotic system,” says Storm. In regarding that whole system as something to learn from, Lizzy has found her way to the richest wellspring of inspiration: sublime nature.
Lizzy’s current work explores tangible space through installation and sculp- ture.Two-dimensional representations grow off of the wall into site-specific installation and free-standing/hanging sculpture that emphasize the architec- tural experience of three dimensions;The eye and the mind piecing things together using visual cues, creating the space within the mind’s eye. By this strict delineation of space, the viewer can be reminded of the complexity and beauty of the everyday experience of space itself, offering a connection, albeit abstract, to the worlds of physics and mathematics.
Joe Waks is a largely self-taught painter, photographer and printmaker who resides in beautiful Bayonne, New Jersey. He is also an attorney who has worked at the highest levels of local, state and federal government in his beloved Garden State. Waks’ mixed media creations underscore his passion for politics and popular culture.
Waks is an audacious commentator on these kooky times. Observant as a seasoned reporter who never leaves home without his “Little Pad of Ideas,” he doesn’t let a headline, artifact exemplifying America’s past grandeur and current status as a nation driving off a cliff at 80 mph, or slice of pizza get by him. Though Waks can be accused as absent-minded — he’s been known to leave his personal effects on the roof of his car as he speeds off — he is constantly unearthing the teeny-tiny things that go unnoticed by both serfs and royalty alike.
Joe Waks was a 2008 New Jersey Print and Paper Fellow at the Brodsky Center for Innovative Editions at Rutgers University, New Brunswick. Waks has had numerous solo and group shows at galleries in New Jersey and New York, including two highly successful solo exhibitions in 2010. His works are in private collections in New York City, Los Angeles and many others in the United States and Canada. Waks is also in the permanent collection of the Jersey City Museum and Ogilvy CommonHealth Worldwide, part of one of the largest public relations agencies, recently acquired several of his paintings for its renowned collection.
Fausto Sevila was born in Santiago Cuba 1960. He came to the US in 1970 and has lived in Elizabeth since. Sevila studied at Rutgers University where he received his MFA in 1994. Sevila has taught in the Newark Public schools for 31 years and currently teaches at Arts High.
Sevila’s work has been exhibited at the Drawing center in Wooster St. NYC, the NJ State museum, the Hunterdon Museum, Aljira A Center for Contemporary Art, Simon Liou Gallery in Brooklyn, The Jersey City Museum, and Kenkeleba Gallery in Manhatan. Sevila has also performed with Geoffrey Hendrix at the Film Anthology and the Snug Harbor Cultural Center. The Brooklyn Rail, NY times and The Star Ledger has reviewed Sevila’s work. Fausto has received Grants from the NJ state council on the arts, The Geraldine R dodge Foundation, Union County Freeholders, The wheeler Foundation and Newark Arts Council. Sevila’s poem was published in a collection of poems and Essays Published by ASCD. Sevila has also discussed his works in forums at the Hunterdon Museum and the NJ State Museum.
As a multi-disciplined visual fine ar tist, arts educator, activist and self-driven historian, Jerry Gant seeks to create work which reflects the human spirit of the community’s people, while challenging conventional thinking. A native of Newark, New Jersey, he has been a fixture on the arts and culture scene for more than 25 years. Jerry’s long list of accomplishments span the literary, performing and visual arts boasting numerous solo projects and group exhibitions, as well as outstanding critical reviews and awards.
In recent years, he has cultivated projects ‘outside the cube’ to heighten the exposure of a fine art aesthetic in urban communities. Before there was a formal mural arts program in Newark, Jerry Gant was developing a repertoire of murals that can be viewed in every ward in the city. He was selected by Verizon for their How Sweet The Sound community arts tour and created a 3-story mural in the city’s historic Lincoln Park district.
In 2009, Jerry Gant’s first public sculpture commission, for the Newark Housing Authority, was installed at the city’s first eco-friendly, solar powered townhouse development, Park Place. At the ribbon cutting, former Newark Mayor Corey Booker noted that “through his art work, the value of brother Gant’s contribution to this city’s quality of life is incalculable!”. Later the same year, Jerry Gant’s thirteen piece sculpture series, commissioned by the Trust for Public Land, was installed at Nat Turner Park, the largest city-owned park in Newark. In 2012, Jerry Gant was commissioned by the prestigious New Jersey Transit Arts Program to create work for a prominent location outside the historic Newark Penn Station. The criteria was for art that would reflect the rich transportation and industrial history rooted in Newark. Jerry masterfully conveyed the theme through the creation of five steel sculpture art panels with intricate motifs aligned along the textured pedestrian median. The installation of Gantalism on April 26, 2013 marked Jerry Gant’s nineteenth installed public sculpture in Newark.
In a city filled with memorial statues and monuments dating back to the 1800s, Jerry Gant is proud to be the only contemporary artist with multiple public sculpture works installed throughout his beloved hometown.
In her work Wendy Letven combines fragments of images, shapes, textures and graphic forms together to study nature, the possibilities of abstraction and the intersection of these in terms of organic form and growth versus man-made geometric systems. Across various media including painting, collage, installation and video, she weaves complex rhythms and patterns of color, form and imagery together to investigate the possibilities for making tangible a more internal sense of space, human perception, narrative and change. Through the process of observation and translation new variants of form emerge that suggest familiar but uncharted territories and that challenge set conventions of representation.
Wendy Letven is a faculty member at Parsons, The New School for Design where she currently teaches a new course entitled “Time”. Wendy actively exhibits her work at museums and galleries including The Montclair Art Museum, Lehman College, Art Santa Fe and Aljira Gallery, to name a few venues. She has participated in residency and workspace programs at The MacDowell Colony in New Hampshire, The Bronx Museum and Dieu Donne Papermill in New York. Wendy studied art and design at Washington University in St. Louis, Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia and at Hunter College in New York, where she received an MFA in painting.
We dream big: in 2014, we began an ambitious project to renovate two additional buildings adjacent to our current space into a single 90,000 sq ft cultural center, allowing us to have an even bigger, richer, and more lasting impact for our wonderful community. We believe in sharing ideas, sharing resources, and that everyone, every single person, should be able to have the arts in their lives and feel welcome at our space. Over the past 11 years, we’ve worked with hundreds of artists, welcomed thousands of visitors, and became an important part of our community.
The critical mass of many artists under one roof, and the consortium model we’ve created with our numerous partners and collaborators means that the project will be a beloved, iconic destination for youth, artists, families, and in short, everyone. The project includes numerous components: 60 artist studios, workshop/lab spaces for specific media like printmaking and commercial photo studio with a co-op, membership model, presenting spaces for visual arts and film, purpose-built educational space, fun retail like a cafe and an enlarged gift shop, and “flux spaces,” designated in response to strong community demand for flexible spaces that can be used for conferencing, hackathons, skill share sessions, yoga and dance classes, staged readings and poetry slams, etc.
We have almost everything we need to make that happen- but we’re asking for your support for the remaining funding to open in 2015.
To support click on the image above or click here.
Gallery Aferro’s Expansion in the News!
NJ.com feature on the Gallery Aferro Expansion plans, to read the whole article click here.
Radius Magazine Online feature on the Gallery Aferro Expansion, read the article here.
Gallery Aferro Announces Massive Expansion to Create 90,000 sq Ft
Cultural Hub in Downtown Newark!
Newark, NJ – Gallery Aferro in partnership with RBH Group announces
the launch of an ambitious expansion project to create a 90,000 square
foot arts center on Market Street in downtown Newark. The space at
73-77 Market Street will attract and engage local residents, visitors,
artists, students, and others in three adjacent buildings owned by RBH
Gallery Aferro began in Newark in 2003, and offers exhibitions
featuring local, national and international artists, public events,
studio residency program, educational offerings, group tours, a
publication line, and public art initiatives. The organization’s
mission is to integrate cultural education and aesthetic engagement
within the context of contemporary issues, and to create an
environment where artists can gather and share physical and
intellectual resources equally. Donations to the gallery can be made
Being awarded “Citations of Excellence” from the New Jersey State Arts
Council for three consecutive years is partially a result of Aferro’s
commitment to innovative and responsive collaborations with museums,
artist collectives and social service organizations. Working with
collaborative partner organizations, co-founders, artists Evonne M.
Davis and Emma Wilcox, have designed the newly expanded Aferro to
include dozens of artist studios, new presenting spaces for visual
arts, cinema and music, a photography co-op, a lab for intaglio,
lithography, papermaking, silkscreen, digital printing and
letterpress, classrooms, and flux space for community programming like
hackathons, poetry slams and yoga.
Local, national and international artists will select studios of
various sizes that are spread out over six floors, at below market
rates. Services such as enriched career support and exposure are among
the resources Aferro offers with the residency program. A critical
mass of artists under one roof will offer youth and the general public
numerous exciting opportunities to meet artists and learn about
contemporary art practice. Artists interested in studio consideration
should email firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.