May 14, 2015

Empire State College's Metro Art Club Presents Inaugural Exhibition

"Diversity: Forging New Paths"

Faize Mohammed Metro Art Show Diversity

Faise Mohammed's artwork in Metro Art Club Show

Empire State College has announced the launch of the Metro Art Club with the art exhibition, “Diversity: Forging New Paths.” The show features current students, alumni and a CUNY guest artist.

The opening reception is 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., Wednesday, June 3, at the Livingston Gallery, sixth floor, 177 Livingston Street, Brooklyn. The exhibition will be on display from June 1 through Sept. 10, noon- 5 p.m., Monday through Thursday, by appointment at 718-783-4400. Admission is free.

Raúl Manzano, college faculty mentor and gallery coordinator, is the curator of the exhibition. Alexsa Rosa, a Bachelor of Science candidate, is the assistant curator. Omar Richards, founder of the Art Club, is also a Bachelor of Science candidate.

“It is with great pride and excitement that we launch the Metro Art Club as part of our growing roster of student organizations. This exhibition is a sample of the tapestry of the diverse communities the college represents and the support it provides to its students,” said Manzano, who is also co-advisor for the club.

“Part of the advising is to work with our students, training them on the various curatorial aspects, from selecting the theme of the show, reviewing artists’ submissions, working with the communications office and deadlines, to the installation of the show. With this exhibition, the college joins its student-body community, promoting social justice, equality, respect, creative and vibrant learning environments for students, faculty, staff and the public,” added Manzano. Professors Betty Wilde-Biasiny and Terry Boddie are the two other mentors sharing the rotating advising role.

The exhibition showcases 12 artists: Paula Hewitt Amram, Jenna Ann Broderick, Malik Frank, Alisa Irby, Faize Mohammed, Vanessa Moore, Gwendolyn Murph, Katrina Natt, Omar Richards, Alexsa Rosa, Sylvia Yvette Rosa and Carmen Veras. The works are inspired by the diversity of the people in New York City and demonstrate how the artists apply the broad definition of diversity to their work. Genres include photography, digital art, print, oil paintings, ink works, watercolor paintings, collage and crayon drawings. Several of the works explore nontraditional techniques, such as crayon drawings on cotton fabric and a play on colors. The various uses of lines, colors, shapes, photographic perspectives and expressionistic strokes make this group exhibition an exciting show, according to Manzano.

Gwendolyn Murph, president of the club, said, “We, the Metro Art Club, humbly strive to create an environment for artists that can both encourage and engage. As a club, we strive to discover new and diverse avenues to provide both support and a sense of connection within our growing art community here at Empire State College.”

“Working as assistant curator has given me a valuable learning experience. Having the opportunity to assist in the coordination of an exhibition has given me the knowledge of the workings of a gallery and is a lasting experience that I truly appreciate,” said Rosa.

The Metro Art Club, founded in fall 2014, is a student organization developed and managed by current students with the guidance of their club advisors.

The group meets the first Friday of each month to critique each other’s works; discuss and organize gallery and museum outings, field trips and group exhibitions; and collaborate. As a fledgling student club, the group is organizing workshops, exhibitions and guest speakers, in order to increase their knowledge and appreciation of various art disciplines.

About Empire State College

Empire State College, the nontraditional, open college of the SUNY system, educates more than 20,000 students worldwide at eight international sites, more than 35 locations in the state of New York, online, as well as face to face and through a blend of both, at the associate, bachelor’s and master’s levels.

The average age of an undergraduate student at the college is 35 and graduate students’ average age is 40.

Most Empire State College students are working adults. Many are raising families and meeting civic commitments in the communities where they live, while studying part time.

In addition to awarding credit for prior college-level learning, the college pairs each undergraduate student with a faculty mentor who supports that student throughout his or her college career.

Working with their mentors, students design an individual degree program and engage in guided independent study and course work onsite, online or through a combination of both, which provides the flexibility for students to choose where, when and how to learn.

Students have the opportunity to enroll five times during the year.