Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Rattman and Ballantyne at The Gazebo

Photography by Paparazzi Paul.

Although the high temperatures reflecting the heat associated with the Summer Season prevailed throughout the day, a series of cooled breezes brought a profound sense of comfort to those who had placed their chairs and blankets upon the grounds of The Presbyterian Church of the Mountain in Delaware Water Gap, PA on Sunday July 17th. An empty Gazebo was soon filled with the featured performers of the church's 2016 Summer Gazebo Concert Series and the presence of Saxophonist Jay Rattman and Pianist Jon Ballantyne filled the modestly sized gathering with a loving anticipation of the music that was to come. It was shortly after the appointed hour for the concert to begin arrived did Jim Dellaria of the church come upon the stage to welcome the denizens of the lawn and to introduce the duo.

The waves of music created an ebb and flow that broke upon the pristine shores of a gentle Summer Afternoon. The skillfully executed improvisations moved the instrumentals into new interpretive realms. The set also included a number of original compositions which incorporated an additional dimension of meaningfulness to the concert going experience. After a time, a short break in the performance ensued which enabled the audience and the duo to partake of the many culinary pleasures offered by the church as well as opportunities to chat with one another. The break concluded and the duo continued their performance until the concert came to its completion. The audience departed with a fulfilled heart and the anticipation of another concert to come in the series. You’ll be able to find more photographs taken during the Jay Rattman and Jon Ballantyne concert in The Rattman and Ballantyne at The Gazebo Gallery at www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10155054194478761.1073741995.91146283760&type=3.

The Summer Gazebo Concert Series at The Presbyterian Church of the Mountain in Delaware Water Gap, PA began in 1990 and is presented every Sunday evening until the end of August. The next concert will feature The SheilaMark Band offering a variety of musical styles ranging from classic blues to contemporary compositions. The free concert will take place on Sunday July 24th beginning at 6pm. Please Explore The Presbyterian Church of the Mountain Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/pages/Presbyterian-Church-of-the-Mountain/234593743269661 or their Website at www.churchofthemountain.org for more information.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Not Just Another Pic On The Wall

Photography by Paparazzi Paul.

On a chilled but humid evening, a modestly sized group of art lovers converged upon The Antoine Dutot Museum and Gallery in Delaware Water Gap, PA on Friday July 8th to experience an Artist's Reception which shared the work of Melissa Perhamus with them. The exhibit is titled, “Mergence” and it's aptly named as the work immediately creates a sense of gathering unto oneself all the elements that makes us whole. One cannot help but to be enchanted by the colors illuminating from each piece as they flow within the space of their frames and whirl into the realm of the dreams that dwell beyond their ever-expanding boundaries.

The placement of maps found within the work symbolized the stations we've found ourselves paused within during the course of our lives as well as the undiscovered destinations we incomprehensibly chase after. The ghostly trees that are often sighted in Ms. Perhamus' work reminds us of the age long travelers who have seen these roads before and gives us a sense of belonging as we thoughtfully comprehend our impermanence. The conversations inspired during the exhibit populated the gallery with their joy and introspection. You'll find more photographs taken during the Artist's Reception in The Not Just Another Pic On The Wall Gallery at www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10155025448528761.1073741994.91146283760&type=3.
Melissa Perhamus was born in Oneida, NY. When she was 7, her family moved to Perry, NY where she had an experience that ignited a passion for the arts. She pursued this passion throughout high school and won a number of awards while a student there. She later went on to earn a BA in Studio Art from SUNY Potsdam. Ms. Perhamus has lived in the Lehigh Valley, PA for nearly 20 years now and believes we are an integral part of the natural world and she seeks to convey this reality to us through her art so we can reestablish this connection. You can learn more about Melissa Perhamus and her work by exploring her Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/MelissaPerhamusArt or her Website at www.melissaperhamusart.com.

The Antoine Dutot Museum and Gallery originated as a brick school house built c. 1850 by Antoine Dutot who founded the town of Dutotsville before it was renamed to Delaware Water Gap, PA. In addition to the exhibitions presented at the gallery, the museum offers tours and educational opportunities for those who would like to learn more about the area. The Mergence Exhibition featuring the work of Melissa Perhamus will be on display until until July 24th. The Dutot's next Exhibition will feature the work of Corine Barton. An Artist's Reception is scheduled to be held on Friday July 29th beginning at 7pm. The exhibit will continue to be on display until until August 14th. Please Explore The Antoine Dutot Museum and Gallery Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/DutotMuseumAndGallery?fref=ts or their Website at www.dutotmuseum.com for more information.

Working on The Write Moves

Photography by Paparazzi Paul.

With anticipation of the discoveries to be made in the literary world, a small group of established and aspiring writers met at The Origins Gallery in Stroudsburg, PA on Thursday July 7th in order to partake of a class titled, “Everything You Need To Know about Writing and Publishing” which was led by Vincent Asaro. A gentle relaxed atmosphere embodied the session as snacks and casual conversation lent their laid back ambiance to the gathering. It was after a time did Mr. Asaro share his instructive insights on the art and process of writing along with the challenges and procedures of publishing one's work.

The experience of learning something new and reassuring proved to be as enjoyable as it was informative. A great number of related topics were explored throughout the session which inspired those present to embark upon and/or resume their literary adventures. It was a fun time and the class ended with a communal certainty that many enjoyable reads will follow. You can view photographs taken during the class in The Working on The Write Moves Gallery at www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10155021732178761.1073741993.91146283760&type=3.

Vincent Asaro is an accomplished author who often delves into tales of horror, suspense, the macabre, and dark fantasy. This can be seen most vividly in his collection of 21 original short stories contained is the the book titled, “Something In the Dark.” Mr. Asaro's most recent novel titled, “Carrot Field” is an epic dark fantasy. Both of these works were well received by literary reviewers. In addition to these, Mr. Asaro writes an ongoing music blog and was a top quarter Finalist in the 2004 Zoetrope screen writing competition. You can learn more about Vincent Asaro and his work by exploring his Website at www.vincentasaro.weebly.com.

The Origins Gallery is a contemporary arts gallery located on the lower level of The Gamers Edge Comics and Games Store at 580 Main St. in Stroudsburg, PA. The class titled, “Everything You Need To Know about Writing and Publishing” led by Vincent Asaro is part of their InspIrArt Series. In addition to the classes they offer, the venue also presents exhibitions of work created by local artists. Their current show is their Functional Art II Exhibition which will be on display until July 16th. The next exhibit at the gallery will be their Abstract Expressionism Exhibition with the Artists' Reception scheduled for Saturday July 23rd. The exhibition is open to all artists and the drop off dates are July 20th and 21st. You can learn more about The Origins Gallery and all they have to offer by exploring their Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/OriginsGalleryStroudsburg or their Website at www.originsgallery.org.

Let Freedom Rain

Photography by Paparazzi Paul.

The town of East Stroudsburg, PA and the population of its surrounding communities joined together in the Dansbury Park to celebrate the Independence Day holiday during a three day 15th Annual American Freedom Festival which was presented by The Eastburg Community Alliance and took place from July 2nd to the 4th. The holiday commemorates when the 2nd Continental Congress voted a resolution on July 2nd, 1776 to approve the act of declaring the North American Colonies' independence from their mother country Great Britain with whom they were engaged in a Revolutionary War. The passage of the resolution led to the formation of a Committee headed by Thomas Jefferson to write a document explaining why the resolution was necessary. The wording of the document was debated and revised until The Declaration of Independence was finally approved upon on July 4th, 1776. The date has since become a National Holiday and it was on this date did I attend the festival.

It was during the late afternoon hours when I arrived and the festival was in full swing. My senses was met by the sounds of carnival rides thrilling their passengers, sights of vendors offering their wares to desirous customers, the scent of delicious food dancing happily upon the breezes, and vibrations of music from the American Spirit Stage. It was there I wandered as Chris London www.chrislondonmusic.com performed a solo set on his electric guitar. He played numerous songs from a variety of genres with each composition being enhanced by his gentle skills. It was after Mr. London's performance did Magician Mark Mysterrio www.pabirthdaymagician.com take the stage to announce raffle tickets for the festival's 50/50 were available for purchase with the proceeds assuring the continuation of the event in the future. It was after this did I begin my explorations of the grounds.

I saw many things in my travels. They ranged from Jewelry to clothing and from ponies to politicians. There were also a lot of rides to be admired (for me) from afar and food reflecting a plethora of cuisines. It was fun to roam around and this enjoyment was enhanced by the meeting of friends who came to partake of the event. We shared the news of the happenings in our lives since we last met along with our thoughts on the happenings around us. Our journeys that day experienced a mixture of alignments and dispersments but the unexpected rendezvous we shared sustained us in our mutual absences as our memories inspired by our friendship were renewed.

It was after some time did I return to experience the performance on the stage. My ears were greeted by the soulful renderings of Red Panda www.redpandaspa.bandcamp.com who consists of Rachel Wild and Jacob Clifford as they shared their gentle talents that flowed throughout the field. They were followed by a demonstration in the martial arts given by students of The Pocono Karate Academy. www.poconokarateacademy.com This was followed by Katie Rubino www.katierubino.com who stood upon the festival's stage with her guitar. Her countenance and stage presence accentuated her gentle and joyful renditions of the compositions she shared which were both established work and original pieces. It was during her performance did I move toward the back of the stage in order to obtain some photographs reflecting the enchantments of her show. While doing this, I met up with musician Pete Begley who asked to borrow my camera so he could take some pictures of me. He did so and I returned to capturing images of much better looking subjects. After Ms. Rubino's set came to its conclusion, she meet with her many fans to share gifts, photographs, and conversations with them.

Meanwhile, the duet known as Woodrow www.facebook.com/wearewoodrow/?fref=ts&ref=br_tf who consists of Theresa Ratcliff on Vocals and Brian Bramkamp on Guitar took the stage. The songs they shared touched the audience who were enjoying every note and utterances. I was too until the rain started to fall and I, since I was getting over a cold, decided to leave participation that surrounded me. Unfortunately, this led me to missing the performance of The Tellerz and Scrilla Lcf who were the Poconos Got Talent Winners and the Fireworks Display. I also missed the event's finale which consisted of a performance given by P. O. W. W. O. W. which is an acronym for Pain of Wisdom In a World of Waste. Still, the 15th Annual American Freedom Festival proved to be an enjoyable one and I look forward to experiencing it next year. You’ll be able to see the pictures I took during my day at The 15th Annual Freedom Festival in the Let Freedom Rain Gallery at www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10155018497558761.1073741992.91146283760&type=3.

The Eastburg Community Alliance was established over 30 years ago by local leaders and business owners and is funded through a combination of local grants, direct fund raising, memberships, and local contributions. Besides their annual Freedom Festival, The Eastburg Community Alliance presents a Fall Octoberfest and their Winter Holiday Celebration. They currently hold their weekly Music on Mondays event which can be enjoyed every Monday evening beginning at 7pm until September. You’ll be able to learn more about The Eastburg Community Alliance by exploring their Facebook Page at
www.facebook.com/EastburgAlliance or their Website at www.eastburgalliance.com.

Topping Off Some Art with Vino

Photography by Paparazzi Paul.

On a beautiful Summer's day surrounded by lush rows of grapes and corn, the Pocono Mountain Arts Council held their Annual Art Under The Big Top event on Sunday July 3rd at The Blue Ridge Estate Vineyard and Winery in Saylorsburg, PA. A plentiful number of skillfully crafted items along with wonderfully composed pieces of art and photography met the delighted eyes of those who were fortunate enough to include the event in their day's adventures. The works on display were enhanced by the congeniality of their creators and the loving atmosphere they contributed to.

The Blue Ridge Estate held the event in two areas. One was in its indoor facility which houses its wine cellars and a restaurant. The visitors to this area of the event eyed the wares on display while tasting some of the wine the venue produces. The other area was set outdoors among the greenery and sunshine. Although the indoor d├ęcor had its charms, there was something about being able to see the expansive landscapes in their fullness and to breathe in the fresh air created through the photosynthesis process that fed the soul. It was a delightful way to spend a Summer's afternoon. You'll find more photographs taken during The Pocono Mountain Arts Council's Art Under The Big Top event in The Topping Off Some Art with Vino Gallery at www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10155018409983761.1073741991.91146283760&type=3.

The Dream of Blue Ridge Estate Vineyard and Winery was conceived in 2010 when a trip to the West coast captured the hearts of Randy and Tiffany Detrick who were inspired by the beauty of the sprawling vineyards and magnificent wineries found there. Their vision was to create a relaxing, elegant yet informal experience where hand crafted small batch wines would be enjoyed. They found a perfect spot nestled in the country side of Saylorsburg, PA overlooking the Pocono Mountains to build their state of the art 3,000 Square Feet wine tasting facility with a 36 foot wine bar. The Blue Ridge Estate Vineyard and Winery also offers Live Music, Barrel tastings, and other events that differ from weekend to weekend along with wine tastings which takes place every day. You can learn more about The Blue Ridge Estate Vineyard and Winery and all they have to offer by exploring their Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/Blue-Ridge-Estate-Vineyard-Winery-632827216777561/?fref=ts or their Website at www.blueridgewineryandvineyards.com.

The Pocono Mountain Arts Council (PMAC) supports the work of artists, and promotes the arts in the community through education and by providing avenues of creative expression. The vision of the Pocono Mountain Arts Council is to be an arts council recognized for promoting creative expression through efforts that foster an appreciation of art throughout the communities they serve. Those serving on its Board of Directors are Catherine Schratt, Jay Paulukonis, Karl Davis, Linda Happe, Ann Negvesky, Rosemary Rinkowski, and Caitlin Humphreys along with Dan Ferguson who serves as the PMAC's Treasurer, Mira Lynn Hensley who serves as PMAC's Executive Vice President, and Nancy Pitcher who serves as PMAC's President. The Pocono Mountain Arts Council's next event will be their Holiday Show at The Skytop, PA Lodge on November 26th and 27th. You can learn more about their events, Pocono Mountain Arts Council, and all they have to offer by exploring their Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/pages/Pocono-Mountain-Arts-Council/152978551380883 or their Website at www.poconomac.com.

Saturday, July 09, 2016

A Gentle Walk Among the Arts

Photography by Paparazzi Paul.

In celebration of the Independence Day Weekend, the town of Stroudsburg, PA held it's monthly First Saturday Art Walk on Saturday July 2nd. Two of the municipality's galleries held Artists' Receptions that day. They were The Artspace Gallery located within The PoconoArts Community Cultural Center and The Origins Gallery. The caliber of the art shown at these venue were something to be seen.

The Artspace Gallery held its Artists' Reception for their Animal Kingdom Exhibition. Although very few people attended the event, the population of the gallery exploded as the animals depicted throughout the venue prowled around each viewer's imagination. The images were superbly rendered and a variety of aesthetic approaches were available to be joyfully explored by those who were present.

The exhibition was a juried one with prizes given out to those deemed to be the best among the best. The Juror who selected the winning pieces was Sally Jefferys. Ms. Jefferys is well known in the field of education in which she received special recognition for her endeavors. Yet, in spite of her accolades, no one envied Ms. Jefferys position as Juror as the quality of the work made it very difficult to choose between them. Still, chosen they were.

The artist who received the Third Place Award was Morgan Weissbach for the work titled, “Gheer,” the Second Place Award went to Terry Kloiber for the work titled, “The Hatchling,” and the First Place Award was given to Linda Stockman for the work titled, “Screech.” A number of Honorable Mentions were shared during the award ceremony. They were Joan Sayer for the work titled, “Back Yard Tree Frog,” Paula L. George for the work titled, “We Are the Sheep of His Pasture,” and Pam Mading for the work titled, “Owl and The Pussycat.” A hearty round of appreciative applause was sounded in order to congratulate the recipients.

The Animal Kingdom Exhibition housed within The Pocono Arts Cultural and Community Center's ArtSpace Gallery in Stroudsburg, PA will be on display until July 30th. The next exhibit at the center will be their 2nd Annual Photography Exhibition with the Artists' Reception scheduled for Saturday August 6th. The exhibit will be on display until August 27th. The exhibition is open to all photographers and the drop off date is August 1st.

The PoconoArts Community Cultural Center in Stroudsburg, PA is part of The PoconoArts Council which is an organization designed to build the communities in which it serves artistically and culturally by providing leadership, service, and education. It does so by offering avenues for artists to display their work through the center and other galleries, educational opportunities for those who would like to explore and/or enhance their creative natures, and encouragement to those who seek to express and/or support the arts. You’ll be able to learn more about The PoconoArts Community Cultural Center and all it has to offer the creative community by exploring The PoconoArts Council Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/poconoartscouncil or their Website at www.poconoarts.org.

The second Gallery to hold an Artists' Reception was The Origins Gallery for their Functional Art II Exhibition. A large population of objects filled the venue serving as enticements to the imagination that ran rabid among the many art lovers who attended the event. The viewing of the work was enhanced by the music provided by Jeremiah Williams www.jeremiahwilliams.info on guitar who filled the senses with his impeccable delivery of the songs he sung. In addition to this, The Gamers Edge Comics and Games Store www.facebook.com/TheGamersEdgeStroudsburg?fref=ts had a large number of miniature figures available for a Paint ‘n Take which enabled artists of all skill levels to bring home a figurine associated with a role playing game they painted throughout the evening.

The evening at The Origins Gallery came to a close with their famous and much anticipated Art Raffle. Tickets that were purchased earlier were nervously held in excited hands while a series of digits were called out by Origins' Gallery Director, Jody Singer. The grace and skill of Mr. Michael Kessler was put into play as he showcased each item to an attentive gathering. Peals of joy and laughter rang out along with congratulatory sentiments as each coveted item was claimed. It was as the final prize was introduced to its owner did the company of friends begin their departure while Mr. Williams rendered some farewell songs.

The Functional Art II Exhibition presented in The Origins Gallery in Stroudsburg, PA will be on display until July 16th. The next exhibit at the gallery will be their Abstract Expressionism Exhibition with the Artists' Reception scheduled for Saturday July 23rd. The exhibition is open to all photographers and the drop off dates are July 20th and 21st.

The Origins Gallery is located on the lower level of The Gamers Edge Comics and Games Store which can be found at 580 Main St. in Stroudsburg, PA. The Origins Gallery is a contemporary arts gallery within the Pocono Art District having one of the highest and fastest sales records in the Stroudsburg area, provides a space to those who teach the arts to those who would like to learn from them, and continues to do everything with the local community in mind. You can learn more about The Origins Gallery and view images and videos of the event taken by members of their staff and others by exploring their Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/OriginsGalleryStroudsburg or their Website at www.originsgallery.org.

The 1st Saturday Art Walk for July was a relaxed one which proved to be a welcome respite from all the sometimes overwhelming aspects of a holiday weekend. The next Art Walk is scheduled to take place on Saturday August 6th with the series scheduled to conclude on Saturday September 3rd. I hope to see you next time as I enjoy sharing the art and the conversations it inspires with you. In the meantime, you can view the photographs I took during the July Art Walk in the A Gentle Walk Among the Arts Gallery at www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10155018309968761.1073741990.91146283760&type=3.

The first Saturday Art Walks are presented by The Pocono Arts District which is comprised of a small group of artists and art lovers who has a desire to enhance the local artistic community. You can learn more about The Pocono Arts District who are always searching for new ideas which you can share with them through their Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/ThePoconoArtsDistrict.