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Women's Art Exhibit

By Sally Unsworth,


MAPLEWOOD, NJ - Over 170 people attended the opening of “Between Friends: The Places We Paint” at 1978 Arts Center on Springfield Avenue on Friday evening.

The exhibition, which will be on view throughout the month of March in celebration of Women’s History Month, features local artists and arts educators Sandra Charlap and Jocelyn Fine. The following is from a recent interview with the artists:

Having lived parallel lives, both Jocelyn Fine and Sandra Charlap moved to Maplewood/South Orange to raise their children. Longtime friends, mothers, teachers and artists, both were diagnosed with breast cancer within weeks of each other. The experience was life-altering, significantly impacted their artistic journey, and afforded them a new perspective.

Having shared this experience, it is unsurprising that their work is connected by threads of exploration, curiosity and a respect for nature and existence. Both Fine and Charlap began grappling with similar subject matter; a wanderlust-fantasy for travel, for places they had been, or dreams of places where they might go.

Their unique and separate approaches to creating bring dimension and juxtaposition to the opening: Fine renders scenery pulled and stretched from her memory through epic, abstract shapes in a minimalistic style, while Charlap provides maximalist details and vibrant colors to settings of her imagination, places of the future, possibilities in paint. The large scale of the work speaks to the enormity of and reverence for the terrain which it captures. The landscape paintings, rich with color and an untethered dreaminess, remind us of our hopes and desires and the ephemeral

Maplewood Town Council member Nancy Adams will lead a conversation with the artists on Monday, March 20 from 7 - 9 PM at the gallery. if you wish, you can RSVP for the Artist Talk on March 20, here.

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