Bridging the Gap

November 7, 2013 - March 10, 2014


Jennifer Bailey

Jennifer Bailey is the Center Director for the SNAP Innovative Senior Center of Eastern Queens where she creates and implements varied arts programming for senior citizens. As a teaching artist, Jennifer has implemented art and therapeutic activities programming within several supportive housing facilities for formerly homeless adults, many of whom had special needs, mental illness and substance abuse issues. Much of her art making is inspired by the idea of kindness, and using art in service of others, wherein she often leaves small, handmade pieces of art around her neighborhood for someone to find and keep, should they need it. Jennifer holds a BFA in Fine Arts and Toy Design from F.I.T.

Soul Quilt Quad is a playfully messy and colorful mixture of torn paper, oil pastels and acrylics on cardboard, woven together with gold wire. A child's point of view of where we fit within this universe. It is an exploration in primitive symbols and the interconnection between the infinitesimally small and vast, from microscopic organisms to spiral galaxies.

Tony Buczko

Today we live is a fragmented world of small spaces. Whether it is the office, our cars, our homes or apartments, we rarely experience wide-open spaces. Even our mental spaces are crowded. In my work, I make space for people. I try to create the feeling of expansiveness. My intention is to make space emotionally inviting, giving people a feeling of inner sanctuary.

For me, color is my primary method of achieving an emotional response in the viewer. In these paintings the color field is the ground on which I create the space. I use images of streams of light, as well as the luminosity achieved through the tension that results from multiple tones of color, to create an illuminated color field.

The objects that appear in the space add the element of asymmetry to create the feeling of time and movement as opposed to the stillness associated with perfect symmetry. The harmonious, balanced, and yet dynamic space gently moves the viewer towards the ideal of serenity.

Anthony Buczko has been making art for over 35 years. Buczko studied painting at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, received his BFA in the philosophy of aesthetics from The University of the Arts (formerly the Philadelphia College of Art) and earned his M.F.A. at the University of Pennsylvania. Buczko has shared his insights with art students as a visiting critic at Brooklyn College.

Anthony Buczko has shown his paintings in numerous shows including the Manif International in South Korea and the Parrish Art Museum in Southampton, Long Island. He works at the Guggenheim Museum and lives with his wife in Queens, New York.

Carol Crawford

My work as an artist draws upon my broad background in documentary photography, filmmaking, printmaking, and theater set design. It is also enriched by my training and experience as an interior and environmental designer, and as an art historian.

After earning a B.F.A. in painting from the University of Buffalo, I was awarded a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship that enabled me to undertake a Master’s degree in art history at Columbia University. I was drawn to the art of small tribal cultures , particularly in Africa, that thrived without a written language. These richly diverse, regional societies were perfect laboratories for gaining insight into how ideas can be transmitted through a purely visual language. These studies not only deepened my understanding of symbolic form, but strengthened my passion for teaching.

When I resumed studio work, I undertook a series of lithography workshops at the Pratt Graphics Art Center and the Bob Blackburn Studios in Manhattan, and began to explore, through printmaking, ways of combining graphics with transparent layers of color and form.

John Day!john-day/c7p8

My work has its source in wilderness. It travels through forests of the Northeast, I observe natural phenomena, which generates ideas for the development of paintings. Encountering and observing wilderness provides a starting point for a process of abstraction. The process eliminates extraneous detail and concentrates on the essence of what interests me about the subject. Light sources within forest spaces also influence this process.

Paul Farinacci

Born and raised in Queens. His artwork has been exhibited nationally and internationally in museums and galleries such as Artists Space, The Drawing Center, Sotheby’s, Islip Art Museum, and the Nassau County Museum and published in books entitled On the Wall, Tattooed Walls and Stone Canoe. He is the recipient of a Fulbright a NYFA fellowship and the Marie Walsh Sharpe Art Foundation. Other accomplishments include fellowships and residencies to the Skowhegan School; Fundacion Valparaiso, Spain; the Millay Colony; the Constance Saltonstall Foundation; Ucross Foundation and this past August at the Blue Mountain Center. Some of his public commissions include the Carnegie Mellon Museum; The Royal Stock Exchange, London; and the NYC Mayor’s Office. Farinacci is an Assistant Professor at Hofstra University and an Art Specialist at the Shaw School.

Juan Hinojosa

Born in New York City, Juan received his BFA from Parsons School of Design in 2002. His work has appeared in multiple group exhibitions throughout New York City.

Tamar Hirschl

This recent photographic body of work is an extension of my primary painting practice, which over the years, has been concerned with urban and ecological upheaval as a result of social unrest. Taken with a camera phone, the images act as a topographic survey of my daily travels. The images are of incidental, painterly marks or found naturally formed compositions I encounter. The photographs mark a place in time, which may cease to exist due to rapid urban development.

Additionally, there is a series of small paintings I’ve completed that use the street photography as an image source. I paint directly from the photograph; the resulting painting accounts for the textures and colors as filtered through the digital camera.

Robert Lobe

My color photographs result from an ongoing process of exploration, discovery and selection within complex urban environments. I focus on street level details to which people typically pay little attention. This holds true whether I am photographing in the streets of Manhattan, western Queens and Brooklyn, or those of a great foreign city like London, Istanbul or Berlin.
I make use of found, often striking color; close observation of patterns, textures and visual rhythms; and the unexpected juxtaposition of ordinary objects. By trying to capture something of the beauty, meaning and mystery of a city’s streets, I hope to create personal work that is unexpected, even challenging.

Leonora Retsas

Leonora holds a Master’s Degree in Architecture from Syracuse University’s program in Florence, Italy. As a printmaker Leonora’s work reflect images from fortune telling observed in greek coffee cups. Her monoprints embody the imagery reflecting the precisely defined forms. She presently lives and works in New York City and has exhibited her work throughout the United States.

Helaine Soller

The painting “Water Flowing” reveals water reflections “bridging the gap” between surrounding elements of nature: tree branches, sky, and clouds which create abstract patterns upon water’s surface. Water “bridges the gap between” the four dimensions: above, below, within, and upon its surface as observed by MC Escher. By emphasizing the beauty and drama of natural forms, and interpreting environments unfolding at a moment in time, I seek to incorporate awareness of nature into everyday environments to alarm us to water’s importance to our environment.

Soller's expressionist acrylic paintings, focuses on an intimate view of nature emphasizing abstract qualities of color, shape, and patterns of light in a style that combines expressionism, realism and abstraction. I paint spontaneously to become one with nature as the composition unfolds much as Kandinsky describes in Point and Line to Plane. Numerous influences inform my work from Monet’s expressionist work to Homer, Porter, O’Keefe, David Park and Alex Katz.

Marilyn Walter

My artwork is about mysterious, chalkboard, poetry stories. I erase, inscribe, trace, incise, collage and transfer the resultant markings and images into mixed media surfaces to create a sense of place.

JooYeon Judy Yang

My works evoke a variety of emotional states based on a full gamut of sources ranging from beauty and joy to the grotesque. They are evidence of my merging of visual traditions wrought from my Eastern lineage and Western experience. They are weighty and twisted with interwoven foliage and I have distorted the natural into absurdity, ugliness, or caricature. Formally the size plays an important role as it represents a huge compression of time. Through using different mediums with different technical challenges, each acts as a link in the big and endless puzzle. Overall, they are united with ominous emotions and a subdued fascination with form under a narrative that expresses own mistreatment of life.

Yoon Cho

As an interdisciplinary artist, I perform in many of my photo and video works. My process involves superimposing my drawings over the photographs and videos. I am interested in exploring the relationships between individuals and their environments.

I grew up in South Korea and moved to the US as a teenager. I lived in many different cities in the east coast and the south. I have lived in large fast paced urban cities as well as in quiet small towns where cows roamed around. My work is the result of the observations that I made in these different social and physical settings while I was building a new identity by adapting and conforming to these new place.

About the Exhibit

Bridging the Gap brings together the talent of many visual artists residing and working in Queens, and handsomely succeeds in portraying a large sample of the artistic life of the borough. It illustrates that there is life outside of Manhattan, well beyond the frontier of Long Island City, reminding us of Saul Steinberg’s classic cartoon of the map of the United States where NYC represents two-thirds of the space of the frame to imply that it is the symbolic center of the universe. But here we redraw the map and extend the boundaries beyond Manhattan Island, to celebrate the fact that on the other bank of the East River, a community of artists has regrouped and thrived.

Displaying 40 artists and 50 works, the exhibition reveals not only the remarkable ethnic diversity for which Queens is famed, but the rich stylistic practices available to contemporary artists; and shows that they are often related. Artworks representing both figurative and abstract traditions—painted, drawn, fabricated, constructed, photographed, conceptualized—with portraits, landscapes, narratives, and formal studies in all media—revisit and revise the foundations of modern and contemporary art practices with passion and sensitivity.

As I viewed the works I was struck not only by the highly developed technical facility of the artists, but the originality and distinctly personal quality of the art. Some pieces are directly related to the artist’s past or present reality—images of memory or observation, whether actual or metaphorical, that evoke home, family, friends or cultures deeply embedded in the artist’s consciousness and surfacing up from that mysterious amalgam of skill, feeling, and ideas that we call creativity. Other works are cerebral or analytical, starting with a concept or theme that is then executed in thoughtful variation, whether metaphysical or empirical, to express each individual’s unique vision.

What is undoubtedly true, as seen in this show, is that visual art, like music and poetry, is deeply connected to our identity and spirit, and that it is alive and well in Queens. Just as musicians, from Louis Armstrong, Count Basie, Ella Fitzgerald and other jazz legends called Queens their home, there is today a society of visual artists in neighborhoods throughout the borough that share a special history and a vibrant present that we are proud to call our colleagues and friends, and to showcase at the center of Queens in Flushing Town Hall. The exhibit will move to La Guardia Community College, on the western edge of Queens, in LIC, a locus for art and education, and ends its run at Queensborough Community College Gallery in Bayside, on the eastern tip of Queens by the waterfront.

Amy H. Winter, Director and Curator
Godwin-Ternbach Museum
Queens College, City University of New York