• Tuesday , 16 January 2018

Twinkle, Twinkle: Era Contemporary Showcases Stargarden Exhibit at Da Vinci Art Alliance

Era Contemporary announces exhibit with beautifully rendered photograph.

Story, photos by Sharon Kozden

When Jessica Libor, artist, graduate of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and director of Era Contemporary, “a pop-up art gallery that showcases artwork by living artists who display a unique vision and a focus on magical realism,” recently called for submissions, artists delivered. The exhibit, entitled StarGarden was held Friday, September 1st at Philadelphia’s Da Vinci Art Alliance. Curated by Libor, it fused the sublime mystery of the celestial night sky’s cosmos with the tangible beauty of floral and fauna on magical terra firma.

So when Cassie Hepler called for a writer and photographer to cover the event, my shooting star-swift affirmative response confirmed my presence at what I suspected would be a uniquely unique event.

Since words are my medium and a blank page my canvass, I provided no actual submission. Because, however, we were invited to wear our “starry best,” my clothing would ensure I had the proverbial total experience. When looking upward at night, I see all things ethereal, wispy, unreachable yet full of possibility (is that why we wish upon stars?) and therefore even more tenuous and breathtaking because of it. As such, my sartorial choice was a sheer and delicate gray top paired with a tulle-like, shimmery slip-skirt.

After introducing myself to Jessica, I began working the room, snapping photos of attendees, artists and artwork alike. A lovely tray of eats, wine and the musical duo of Christine Irizarry and Seth Aaron created a fete-like mood in the comfortable space housing the exhibit. Starry-themed décor was yet another perfect accompaniment.

The notion of tossing out a phrase–StarGarden–then witnessing the singular and spectacular end results is fascinating. Art knows no limit in terms of the artists’ collective imaginations, experiences and whatever other elements factor into reaching such creative sweet spots. What would they do with, say, SeasonalAffect, a co-mingling between seasonal changes as expressed by human emotions? Anything is possible, which is exactly what transpired with the StarGarden challenge.

Artists’ replies to my query about inspiration for particular works ran the gamut from surprisingly easy-peasy to more elaborate telling of the process. Jingyi Wang is simply fascinated by the cactus plant. She brilliantly depicted the exhibit’s theme phrase with a plant that captures her fancy.

Mingling and engaging with artists and art-lovers can be a heady, provocative and even emotional experience. The atmosphere crackles with creative energy and spirit. One individual reminded me that we all are artists in one way or another. If that’s the case and when another call for submissions is issued from Era Contemporary, I just may have to step up and enter Elementary Stick Figures by Sharon Kozden, charcoal briquette on paper towel, zero dollars.

While not possible to post every fabulous entry here, they all merit viewing, so visit Era Contemporary online. If interested in purchasing a piece, please contact eracontemporary@gmail.com

Curator Jessica Libor’s earrings shine, shimmer and capture well the exhibit’s theme.

Location, location, location!

Presiding, guiding and inspiring:  Da Vinci rendering affixed to building.

Pretty sure I’m where I’m supposed to be!

Now I know for certain I’m where I’m supposed to be.

Sharon Kozden with local artist Barbara Zanelli, who popped in to check out the display.

Nice composition there, light bites!

White lilies and white wine were aromatic and refreshing.

Vocalist Christine Irizarry’s skirt compliments backdrop décor.

Duo Seth Aaron and Christine Irizarry tune and prep to entertain.

Curator Jessica with artists and guests, no doubt talking ART.

Nathan Durnin poses with his submitted works, NGC 6302, NGC 1952 and NGC 7923, all oil on canvas, all $350.

Family and admirers view artist Greg Fisher’s works, as Jessica snaps mini Polaroid shots of guests.

“Shiny, happy people” (L to R) include artists Jingyi Wang, Jessica Libor, Alayne Abrahams and Nathan Durnin.

Jessica Libor between her entries and wearing my headband just because it better suited her ensemble.

Lightchaser by Jessica Libor, oil and gold leaf on panel, $2,000.

Date Night by Jessica Libor, oil on panel, $2,000.

Family and friends of artist Greg Fisher pose before some of his submissions.

Meteor Shower by Greg Fisher, fine art photographic print, $450.

Cabin Under Aurora
by Greg Fisher, fine art photographic print, $650.  Photo provided by  Era Contemporary.

Andromeda Waiting by Bryant Girsch, acrylic on canvass, $500.

Looking for Remnants by Julianna Wells, oil on panel, $500.

Jingyi Wang fronts her works:  Cactus in Moonlight and Cactus in Star Night, both oil on canvass, both $400.

Night Time by TingTing Hsu, oil on canvas, $1,500.

The Ascent by Alayne Abrahams, watercolor on paper, $800.

Alayne Abrahams graces her Night Flight, water color on paper, $950.

How Slow the Shadow
by Charissa Schulze, mixed media sculpture, $1,200.

Charissa Schulze’s message seen through a hole in the piece’s presentation box.

by Antonietta Kies, oil on board, $375.

Pillars of Creation
by Antonietta Kies, oil on board, $325.

Crab Nebula (M1)
 by Antonietta Kies, oil on board, $350.

Sharon Kozden reunited with star headband while “painting (backdrop) palette blue and gray” with Jessica Libor and congratulating her on successful exhibit.

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