Artworks by ‘Women of the World’ are on exhibit

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RAHWAY, NJ — “Women of the World” is a Gallery Space Pop-Up Program exhibit featuring art by women born in other countries. The exhibit will run until Friday, April 19, at Rahway Senior Center, 1306 Esterbrook Ave., Rahway. Gallery Hours during exhibit dates are Monday through Friday, from 1 to 4 p.m. Admission is free.

Mayor Raymond A. Giacobbe Jr. and Rahway City Council are presenting this program as a celebration of National Women’s Month. The artists, who were born in other countries, are now residing in the United States.

There are six featured artists. Rodriguez Calero, from Puerto Rico, has received many awards, grants and residencies in the United States for the creation of very unique paintings and, more recently, surreal collages.

“She lives in New York City,” said Lawrence Cappiello, curator of The Gallery Space. “Her paintings are powerful. She uses stencils and photographs.”

Pam Cooper, from the United Kingdom, recreates remarkable artworks, both two-dimensional and three-dimensional, from a variety of types of paper, embellished with printed imagery.

She explained that her work is about social issues. Her featured work represents children in safety in their homes. “I have two children and six grandchildren,” she said. “I’m so pleased I don’t live in this time when every issue of your life can be on view.”

Cooper, who is currently living in Upper Saddle River, added, “I’m a sculptor, really. I’m inspired by so many sculptors. Going to MOMA (Museum of Modern Art) and seeing fantastic artists making sculptures — I can do that. I went to Pratt (Institute, a private university in Brooklyn, N.Y.). It was hard work, but really good.”

Ekaterina Kardonova, from Russia, paints beautiful representational, painterly portraits and still lives and landscapes in between her numerous travels in the United States and abroad.

Anna Ryabtsov, also from Russia, is a photographer whose work often shows stark landscapes with tiny human figures that emphasize scale and depth. She is an event photographer who shoots weddings.

Parvathi Kumar, from India, is a photographer whose images focus on a broad range of subjects featuring both people and places from her extensive travels. She also creates more experimental digital images. She’s a member of the New Jersey Photography Forum.

Nupur Nishith, also from India, produces colorful, complex images which relate to the art of her native country. She moved to Edison 12 years ago when her husband had to relocate for his career. She explained how she learned the art basics from her mother and then evolved the art form on her own. “It’s completely mine, using modern colors,” she said. “We humanize every object. Niche means ‘light.’ Dhara means ‘earth.’ Bigger eyes are more beautiful — we draw bigger eyes. A lot of detailed line work.”

“Patterns are phenomenally complex,” added Cappiello.
Raven Walthour, from Rahway, is an art enthusiast and a jewelry artist. She wasn’t showing her work, but she came to support the arts and see her friend’s work.

This exhibit was made possible by funds from the Union County Office of Cultural and Heritage Affairs, a partner of the New Jersey State Council on the Arts.

Photos by Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta