News

Pat Dunigan

triCityNews

Local weekly paper covering regional news and events gets an interview with artist Pat Dunigan. by Tara Collins AKA Twisted T

I pulled up to Pat Dunigan’s studio on Locust Point Road at dusk to a bright, colorful magical little hideaway. The building has been owned by the same family for over a hundred years, it was built in the late 1800’s. Her studio, a portion of the building had once been the Locust Point Road Post Office, one of several post office locations serving the area of “Oceanic” (later to be named, “Rumson”). With the door open wide to the main road outside on a lovely, late summer night in a room filled with colorful, whimsical artwork practically spilling out door, we talked ART.

Tell me about your art background? Art School or Self-Taught?

I went to Skidmore to study languages but ended up taking more art classes than language. I also went to Parsons School of Design to create my portfolio needed to work in advertising. I have worked in advertising since I was 23 all over the world. Many years ago, while doing a lot of long plane travel, I started filling notebooks with collage designs made from pieces of colors torn from magazines. I made about a dozen books, got busy with life and put them away for 20 years.

What brought you to create the art that you make?

Several years ago, I went back to those collage notebooks. I pulled them out and started looking through them and thought, “These are pretty good!” They were the inspiration for my art. They inspired me to translate them into paintings. I also make 3D sculptural versions of some of the designs.

What is your process with your art making?

My work is all about color. For the work I do that is based on collage and graphic designs, I start with cut out pieces of colored paper torn from magazines. I’ll make dozens of collages and photograph them. Then I enlarge them and they become the models for my paintings. These paintings are made with a more precise process of creating the hard lines and shapes. For my freeform and more recent work with flowers, I sometimes start with photos that I have taken of shapes – things I see on the streets of NYC or shapes I see in my garden. My process for making these paintings starts with a base color that is applied with large pieces of hard rubber (like a squeegee). I create several layers of different colors. I then start painting the shapes over them. I also work with oil sticks to add drawing elements to the shapes, which also adds texture to the painting. After all the base colors are applied and the flower is painted, the drawing happens – very fast and spontaneously. I’ll do a layer and then let it sit for a while before coming back with the
next layers.

What inspires you?

Color. Interesting shapes. Imperfect things. Years ago, I worked for many years with a film director in Australia, who was also a photographer and painter. We traveled all over the world, and I learned from him to really see things through an “artist’s eye”. To see connections between things, to notice colors, light and shapes in the most ordinary things.

If or when you get lost in an “art funk” (like writer’s block for artists), what helps you get back to creating?

If I don’t know what to do next on a collage-like painting, I get back to work on a flower painting. I switch back and forth between the two. Sometimes I jump to working with wood blocks to create 3D pieces and mobiles.

How do you think the community can better support their artists?

I would love to see landlords turn unused buildings into art studios.

You can find Pat’s work on her website: patdunigan.com or on
Instagram: @patdunigan


Asbury Pod

Asbury Pod Interview

Asbury Pod welcomed Carrie Turner and Jenn Hampton from the Asbury Park Arts Council, to talk about the new mural project that is underway at the historic Asbury Park Sewage Plant, and other projects coming this fall.


Shana LaBranche

Shana LaBranche

triCityNews

Local weekly paper covering regional news and events gets an interview with artist Shana LaBranche . by Tara Collins AKA Twisted T

Shana-LaBranche
Shana LaBranche

I met Shana at a recent art opening at Over The Moon Art Studios where she and I had art on display.  As soon as I laid eyes on Shana and I saw her bright, friendly smile she drew me in.  She is one of those special humans who lights up a room with her energy and beautiful smile.  Shana is a Floridian who moved to Asbury Park ten years ago.  Listening to the story of how she came to Asbury Park was a series of events that sounds like divine intervention.

Tell me about your art background? Art School or Self-Taught? 

I come from a very big, creative family, I am one of eight children (#5 in the lineup) and out of my eight siblings, five of us have some type of artistic or creative ability.  My older brother, Hanson, who basically taught me everything I know was an artist, he passed away in 2012 at the age of 25 due to liver failure.

Most of what I know is self-taught except when I was younger I attended BAK Middle School of the Arts, for kids who had artistic capabilities.  I had to audition to get in, but that school was the foundation.  I explored sketching, printmaking, mobiles, clay art, different styles of art like the grid method, stippling, hatching and the list goes on.  We were encouraged to create and to carry a sketchbook with us at all times.  We were also critiqued by our teachers and peers.  I learned that art isn’t just one way or expressed the same and I thrived there.  I was encouraged to continue to the high school, but this was around the same time my brother was diagnosed with liver failure, I missed the chance to audition, but didn’t even care at that point.

What is your process with your art 

I usually start off with a sketch and an idea in my head of how I want the outcome to be, but I embrace mistakes.  Sometimes I’m painting and I do something that wasn’t in my head but it looks good so I keep it and use that “mistake” throughout the painting or take it with me in other paintings.

How did the quarantine/Covid-19 affect you as an artist? 

It actually inspired me.  Once we were all ordered to stay home all I had was my art and time.  It all started with my “Social Distancing” piece.  I painted the first of three paintings and I posted it on my Instagram story, which is only available for 24 hours.  I got so many compliments and comments from people saying they can relate to what I painted.  It inspired me how everyone could relate to how we were separate, yet connected.  That started my “Self Care Series”.  Covid affected my art in a positive way.   It gave me the momentum I needed.  Prior to Covid, I was so consumed with work and life and suddenly I was able to stop and create.

Tell me more about the “Self Care” series.  (These are the pieces on exhibit at Over The Moon Art Studios)

I was inspired by a digital artist (@morysetta) who created a digital picture of a girl on the moon that I saw on Instagram.  I decided to paint my version of a girl with a fro, homegirl in a bubble bath with a glass of wine in outer space, but also kept it “dark” because it was such a dark time.  I reached out to Morysetta to tell her she had inspired me and asked if it was ok to post my painting.  She wanted to see it and then she said, “Yeah, go ahead!”  People really liked it, so I continued on making more of them.

*How do you think the community can better support their artists?

More help with the business end of being an artist, as well as, opportunities to network with other artists, where we can share ideas.

*What would you like to see happen in the Monmouth County art community?

Artist to Artist Mentorships.  Having an established, professional artist mentor me so that someday when I am more established, I can “Pay it Forward” and mentor an up and coming artist who needs help.

You can view Shana’s work in-person at Over The Moon Art Studios at 808 Springwood Avenue in Asbury Park or visit her website: shanatheecreative.com
Instagram: @shana_thee_creative  Tiktok: shana_thee_creative  Facebook: shana_thee_creative

Shana LaBranche

Art Journal Jam

Weekly Art Journal Jam starts at Parlor Gallery!

Weekly Art Journal Jam starts at Parlor Gallery! triCityNews Artist Interviewer, Tara Collins a.k.a. Twisted T, has formed the “Jersey Art Journal Jam”, a weekly group art journaling night at Parlor Gallery on Thursday nights. Whether you are an artist or a newbie, discover the many joys of Art Journaling! Allow your art journal to become your diary, scrapbook or art portfolio. Art Journaling is a way of documenting your daily life incorporating “pieces” of your day, a place to experiment and play with different art mediums, it’s inexpensive, portable and a therapeutic form of creative self-care. In our busy worlds, we need to “schedule creativity” to fit it in so come and get together Every Thursday night or when you’re available to interact with art journalers of all ages and skill levels. Bring your own sketchbook or art journal, some supplies including markers and scissors (basic art supplies will be provided), BYO refreshments or snacks.

Weekly sessions are $20 per person, every 2nd Thursday of the month will be DONATION BASED where journalers can pay what they can to join in.

    • Sessions are 6:00-8:00 pm OR 7:00–9:00 pm
    • Located at Parlor Gallery, 717 Cookman Avenue, Asbury Park
    • Contact Tara with any questions at: mytwistedart@gmail.com or via IG @artoftwistedt


FINE ARTS AND TECHNOLOGY CAMP

Asbury Park Arts Council supports Inspire Life!

FINE ARTS AND TECHNOLOGY CAMP

Inspire Life Fine Arts and Technology Camp is a camp designed to expose young minds to creative artistry, basic musical theory, technology concepts, song composition and production, dance, vocal techniques, and all things STEAM! In addition to exposing young creatives to fine arts and technology, the camp is also designed to help kickstart their minds and prepare them for the upcoming school year. Self-empowerment, leadership skills, personal excellence, and mental health and wellbeing are central themes that undergird each activity and lesson.

Inspire Camp offers in-person camps for youth ages 7-17. These camps are held during school breaks (i.e. summer, fall, winter, and spring). Below are some of the course offerings within their camps.

  • Urban Farming at Kula Farm
  • Dance & Choreography
  • Music Production and Theory
  • Technology & STEAM
  • Photography
  • YouTube Content Creators


Music Mondays

Music Mondays at Springwood Park- Summer 2022

Look for the APAC table at Music Mondays, the free weekly music series produced by the Asbury Park Music Foundation in Springwood Park at the corner of Atkins and Springwood Avenues.  APAC is using this opportunity to meet residents in a casual setting to introduce ourselves and our goal of getting an Arts and Culture Plan created for the city.   The popular concert series kicked off its seventh season on July 4th and will run through the end of August; all performances are from 6pm-8pm and include one opening act and a headliner.  Attendance is often in the hundreds and is as demographically diverse as Asbury Park itself.   APAC is excited to be in the community and hear firsthand of how the arts is impacting peoples’ lives; we look forward to gathering valuable feedback that will help shape our community engagement efforts going forward.

For a full Music Monday schedule: https://asburyparkmusiclives.org/upcoming-events-springwood.


Meagan Greenberg

triCityNews

Local weekly paper covering regional news and events gets an interview with artist Meagan Greenberg . by Tara Collins AKA Twisted T

Meagan Greenberg is the sweet, bubbly charismatic sweetheart behind Over The Moon Art Studios on Springwood Avenue in Asbury Park. First, her business provides a great need for artists in the way of art studio space. For those who do not have the room in their living space for art making, Over the Moon provides affordable art studios. Second, she is an enthusiastic art teacher who offers an interesting selection of art workshops and classes for children and adults. Third, she loves co-creating with others and has created a social Art Club for creatives. Meagan is also a talented artist who uses sound bites in music to guide her art making.

Tell me about your art background? Art School or Self-Taught?

A little bit of both. I got my first degree in Psychology and then I went back to college to become an art teacher. Being an art teacher taught me how to experiment with many
different materials, but it never actually taught me how to professionally paint or make a living as an artist. That is the stuff I am learning now in the field. It’s a big part of the reason I created our studio, Over The Moon. I wanted to give artists the opportunity to learn from each other about practical techniques and the professional side of being an artist.

What brought you to create the art that you make?

I have a lifelong infatuation with color, from both an aesthetic and psychological standpoint. Every art piece I make is about how we use color to convey meaning. I also
relish any opportunity to tinker! I have a blast experimenting with new mediums. When I found alcohol inks, they were different from any material I had worked with before. I was fascinated by the chemistry which produces the color banding and striations. I even learned a little bit about the liquid chromatography process. What I love the most about this material is that the ink has a mind of its own.

What is your process with your art making?

My whole process is very intuitive and improvisational because I have very little control. I use air to move the ink instead of a brush, so I have to extemporize and create solutions to all the little visual problems that pop up as the ink moves in unpredictable ways.

What do you listen to when you create? Music, podcasts?

I love my TED talks, but music plays a large role in my art-making process. I regularly use music (and the synesthetic experience generated by it) as a starting point to create a
subjective constraint. I aim to transform sound bite, song, and its immersive cognitive experience into visual imagery.

Tell me more about how sound and music work in your art.

I have strong visual imagery associations with sound. Some artists label this as “synesthesia” or “pseudo- synesthesia” a neurological phenomenon. But, in my case, Ipersonally think that as human beings with multisensory nervous systems, we inherently make associations from birth and those show up in our artwork. Music is multi-sensory. If you close your eyes when listening to music, you have imagery that goes along with it. Some songs “sound” blue or red. I experience visual sensation with sound and I see shapes, some sounds are “watery” others are like “bursts”. I listen and create what I hear.

What would you like to see happen in the Monmouth County art community?

I want to see everyone learning and growing and nurturing their artistic passions. I want these opportunities to be accessible to everyone regardless of their income, both for
children and adults and especially senior citizens! I would love to work with local organizations to establish and fund free and affordable art classes and workshops for anyone who wants to take them! Over The Moon has helped me establish relationships with tons of artists who are eager to teach and share their passions, technical skills, and wisdom. If a nonprofit is interested in working with us to make this happen, please contact me.

You can contact Meagan & see her work at: OverTheMoonArtStudios.com
Instagram: @meagg.e.moon_art & @over_the_moon_art_studios or stop by the studio at 800
Springwood Avenue in Asbury Park (located in the back part of the Second Life Bikes building)


Lady King Collage

triCityNews

Local weekly paper covering regional news and events gets an interview with artist Lady King Collage. by Tara Collins AKA Twisted T

In honor of National Collage Day recently, I thought it would be a good time to interview “Lady King Collage” whom I follow on Instagram. I really enjoy her image choices and
sense of humor with the combinations she arranges in her collages. Tell me about your art background?

Did you attend art school or are you self taught?

I am self-taught. I didn’t go to art school, I went to college for Wildlife Conservation with a focus in Animal Behavior. As I think with most people though, art has always been
such an important part of my life.

What brought you to create the art that you make?

I have these old collages in my little home studio in West Belmar, that I made during the height of the presidential election in 2016. They are pretty straight forward and were an
easy way for me to express a lot of the sadness I was feeling. I didn’t share art in a public way for a long time, but I think that’s probably what initiated my introduction specifically into the collage world. My art has certainly evolved over the years, but what has remained the same has been my love of nature and the sciences, as well as frustration with so many political issues. Ultimately, I create as an outlet, but if I make something that resonates with just one other person – that’s a great feeling.

What is your process with your art making?

I work specifically with paper. I spend a lot of time checking out antique stores that have old books or bidding on vintage magazines on eBay. Once I get a haul of new materials, I pull out everything I think I might want to use and go from there. At this point, I have hundreds of old sci-fi magazines, field guides and art history books. I use a scalpel or short fine blade scissors to cut the images out and usually a basic glue or Modge Podge to seal everything together.

What inspires you?

Is “everything” too corny of an answer? The truth is I’ll cry just listening to a classical piece of music. I’ll cry if I see a herd of deer on my way to work and the sunlight hits them at just the right angle. Nature inspires me and science inspires me. There are so many incredible artists that I look up to who inspire me as well.

If or when you get lost in an “art funk” (like writer’s block for artists), what helps you get back to creating?

I wish I had a solution to this, I’m open to suggestions! In all honesty, I’ll (sometimes) go weeks without creating anything. I try to navigate the ebb and flow of those emotions responsibly now, more so than I did when I was younger. I don’t want to put pressure on myself to create, but I do try to recognize when it’s been a while since I last sat down to make something. I used to be hard on myself if I sat down to create and wasn’t happy with what I was making. I still deal with those same feelings, but I try to redirect my thoughts when that happens now. Once I can get past that, it usually opens me back up to feeling free enough to create again.

Where do you show/exhibit your art?

I recently was part of the Asbury Park Avant-Garde exhibit at the M. Christina Geis Gallery at Georgian Court University. Before that, pre COVID, at the Locals Art Space in Asbury and Trident Arts in Long Branch. I’ve also been fortunate enough to create and co-create album art with friends of mine for their music, Martin Howth, Thank You Scientist, Karmic Juggernaut to name a few.

What would you like to see happen in the Monmouth County art community?

It sounds silly to state the obvious, but to think that we all spent over a year shut down with no gallery openings, no live music, it really makes me appreciate where we are now. Art brings joy to all of us in so many different ways and it’s imperative, especially now for people to show their appreciation for art by showing their support. They can buy local art or buy a ticket to see a live band. Or, if you can’t help monetarily, continue to support local projects and programs that benefit artists in their area, get involved at a grassroots level to encourage local politicians to support the art community, or see if there are any volunteer opportunities at any local galleries or organizations.

Check out her collages on Instagram @ladykingcollage


Porkchop

triCityNews

Local weekly paper covering regional news and events gets an interview with artist Porkchop. by Tara Collins AKA Twisted T

I’ve known Porkchop for many years now starting from when I owned a punk rock store a few doors up from the Parlor Gallery. I’ve always admired his hustle, he’s always busy working on something, one cool project after another. It’s hard enough for a full-time artist to be able to support themselves no less three children! The man doesn’t sit still for long, so I was happy to sit down with him one night at the Parlor Gallery to talk about some international attention he’s been getting the last few months. We spoke about the controversial “Giving Tree” over the holidays, the exciting news about his solo exhibition at the Erarta Museum of Contemporary Art in St. Petersburg, Russia and an in-depth conversation about the story behind his work of art called, “Elucidation”.

Were you surprised at all the attention that The Giving Tree received over the holidays?

Yeah, that was wild. I have friends out in Colorado that saw it and my sister in Oakland, California. While in Miami for Art Basel, I saw something in the Australia and Argentina News. At last count, 44 different news agencies picked it up. Next Christmas, I may need to open up a little “Santa’s Workshop” making cardboard Christmas trees! (“The Giving Tree” merchandise including t-shirts, sweatshirts, ornaments and puzzles are still available at the two FUN HOUSE locations on Cookman Avenue and in Convention Hall.)

Tell me about your show at the Erarta Museum.

I met them a few years ago at Art Basel. They bought a few of my statues. This show was three years in the making. Erarta is a large museum with five floors. It’s the largest private contemporary art museum in Russia. Part of it is a permanent collection which they bought and added two of my pieces to. The other floors are galleries where you can purchase the art. That’s where my 25 pieces are. The exhibition is called, “La Catedral”. I was planning on attending the opening of the show, but with everything that’s going on there with the current situation with Ukraine and Russia, that couldn’t happen. The museum is having a virtual opening instead.

Can you explain the story behind your body of work called, “Elucidation” .

I started painting over mannequins in 2013 and creating these skull-like figures with the idea of how religion evolves and how it borrows and steals from other religions. My installations are similar to an altar so people get the religious aspect. I also create small figurines and busts that I upcycle. I find, fix, build up and paint over them. They get a new lease on life like the full-length figures. They are the equivalent to a reliquary. So, again, there will be some confusing familiarity, “It looks like Beethoven, but…?”

I like text, so I wanted to incorporate text, but if a person does not connect with that word or doesn’t like that word, then they disconnect from it altogether. At first, I said I’d use different languages, but then decided to make up my own. The language is made up, BUT it looks very familiar, like Yiddish or Sanskrit.


Judi Tavill

triCityNews

Local weekly paper covering regional news and events gets an interview with artist Judi Tavil. by Tara Collins AKA Twisted T

Serendipity. Instinct. Timing. These three words ran through my head as I listened to Judi Tavill tell her story. All young Judi wanted for her future as she prepared for college, was to graduate from RISD (Rhode Island School of Design) and be a Fashion Designer. It was all planned out. Instead, she trusted her instinct and took another path being pulled toward Washington University School of Art (St. Louis).
At Washington University, it all came together for her. Doors opened for her that may not have, had she gone the original way and attended RISD. Recently, Judi turned 50 and started reviewing her life and art path. She turned inward, trusted her instinct and changed paths, once again. Judi Tavill is a ceramic artist and sculptor who works and lives in Rumson.

What brought you to create the art that you make?

I was the head designer/design director of Lilly Pulitzer creating everything from textile print
art to garment silhouettes to in-store shop illustrations. I left to start my own line until my first son, (Musician, Jake) was born. I went back to consulting in fashion and created the first “bear” outfits for Build-A-Bear Workshop, among other fashion and textile design
projects. After having my second son, (Artist, Sam), I found clay was off and running. I moved
from creating wheel thrown functional pottery, to deeply carved and textured decorative
pottery and objects. It was great and hard and I loved it until I wanted to “express” more in
my art.

What inspires you?

Inspiration comes from the connectedness of nature and our human connection to nature. I
look to the structures I see in trees, plant life, rock and coral formations and see the direct comparison to that of human bodies and the systems within: vascular, muscular, skeletal. The clear similarities further emphasize the human connection with the earth itself. Basically, we are all ultimately connected, which in a way is a lovely idea, BUT it can be uncomfortable and messy, but it JUST IS.

You recently changed your art from small ceramics to large scale sculptures, tell
me about that change.

I started to rethink my art. I was successful with making functional art: teapots, cups, vases
(and her famous chip/dip bowl), and the decorative pieces, but I wasn’t saying anything.
When I turned 50, I figured it’s now or never and asked myself, “If I could do whatever I
wanted, what do I ultimately want to do?” I wanted my art to be unique and to affect people.
I also wanted it to be different from my functional art – art that you can’t quite figure out right away. I started thinking about energy and connection. My current sculptural series titled, “Entanglements” addresses an awareness of self and society. Humanity being inextricably connected biologically, environmentally, societally — forcing us to contend with the truth that if we cannot find a way to “come together,” we break apart. What you can’t tell from photos of the work, is that the sculptures are pieces that connect together. So, it can be changed by interlocking them in a different way. Or, a collector can “grow” the art, by adding another section to the existing piece at a later date.

How do you think the community can better support their artists?

I think it is important to have art in public spaces to expose people in their daily lives to visual art. I would love to have someone during their day, not actively seeking out art, but just going through their day, notice art and have it effect their perspective at that moment. I feel there are many reasons why people are not exposed to art and/or think they cannot relate. I think it is important to ease people in to see things they are not familiar with and to experience how visual art affects you and can get into your psyche. Getting art into public places and letting the community see what is happening right under their noses may just pull their interest into bringing more art into their private homes. Or, to appreciate it and support more public installations. The community can bring attention to the artists by sharing images, art events and including the local artists in opportunities where their work can gain greater exposure.

Check out Judi’s art at: jjuditavill.com, IG: @juditavillart FB: juditavillart