A Place for Fine Arts - Unfortunately not in Westfield

As I mentioned many times in this blog, I believe Westfield has a lot to offer as community and as a town. But still, a few things are missing. E.g. a place for fine art, for visual art to be precise. As both my wife and I are really interested in photography, paintings and sculpture, to us this feels like a bit of a gap. So tonight we ventured out to the "Visual Arts Center" in Summit.

For a town of the size of Summit, the building as a venue to display art is quite impressive and can easily compete with some more famous museums and galleries. Not only is it a great venue for displaying art, it is also an institution for the formation of an artist community, for the training of artists and education of the public about art. From what see, it has managed to attract quite a following of people interested in visual arts from all over New Jersey and beyond.

Tonight there was an opening of the annual "Members and Students Show" where the community that has formed around the Visual Arts Center has an opportunity to show their particular style of art. The exhibit is an eclectic combination of photographs, paintings, sculptures and other installations that represent a huge range of styles, techniques and topics. Some of the objects are truly impressive and could be found in a big city are museum, then some other - for my taste - are closer to crafts than to fine art. But that is what makes this show interesting and engaging to the observer.

The curators have a done a fabulous job to displaying the objects in the exhibit space in a way that doesn't feel too overcrowded while at the same time contrasting or complementing art objects from very different artists into new experiences, creating aspects of artistic perception by combing individual artistic statements into a larger networks of meanings.

The show will be open till 2007-07-20. Even if fine art is not your main interest, I would recommend a visit to this show just to get a flavor for the breadth and quality of contemporary visual arts created in New Jersey. Monday to Thursday, the galleries are open till 8:00 PM. Visiting the exhibit first with some friends and then checking out the restaurants in Summit downtown could make for a very nice evening.

Signing Off - The Westfield Blogger

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