New Rochelle always boasts of its arts tradition, but this weekend, the creative works take over.
ArtsFest is here, and it’s not just in New Rochelle anymore. It has expanded to include Pelham. From noon to 7 p.m. Saturday and from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, the city will be jumping with singers, fire-spinners, jugglers and visitors taking in works of that include handmade copper jewelry and artworks made from maps.
There will even be yoga and meditation workshops, and history, including photographs from a 1961 desegregation lawsuit against the city school district.
Meanwhile, here are some exhibits and events highlighted in press releases sent out about the festival:
“Concept Cube” Opens at the MAC
The Museum of Arts & Culture will showcase the work of New Rochelle High School alumni artists as part of ArtsFest next weekend, September 22nd and 23rd. Created by 2009 graduates Jesus Baez and Rebecca Mills, the show, titled “Concept Cube,” was designed to show off the skills of the New Rochelle High School art alumni while also highlighting the strength of the school’s visual arts program. The exhibit features works in a variety of media including painting, photography, sculpture and video. The MAC will be open Thursday night, September 20th as part of the ArtsFest preview, and again on Saturday, September 22nd from 12:30 to 5 pm. ArtsFest, organized by the New Rochelle Council on the Arts, is a weekend-long celebration featuring free art exhibits and performances at 32 venues in New Rochelle and Pelham; for a complete calendar of ArtsFest events visit www.newrochellearts.org.
Co-curator Jesus Baez says the inspiration for this exhibit was the desire to “showcase how New Rochelle High school has greatly influenced artists who attend the school, and how far they have come in their journey after high school. Constantly hearing that there are budget cuts for the art programs, we decided to show how much art makes a huge impact in all our lives.” Baez and Mills solicited participation through an email blast and Facebook, and were pleasantly surprised both at the size and the promptness of the response: “It just demonstrated how passionate they are,”says Baez.
Mr. Baez is currently signed with Tearsheet Education and is also a freelance graphics designer and fashion photographer. Ms. Mills works for the Pelham Art Center as the weekend assistant and is a feminist illustrator. Baez and Mills are currently collaborating on numerous projects and “aspire to arouse an art movement in New Rochelle adopting young underground artists.”
The Museum of Arts & Culture, located in the new wing of New Rochelle High School, is a program of the New Rochelle Fund for Educational Excellence, a non-profit organization that supports educational enrichment programs in all of the New Rochelle public schools. For more information, please visit www.dbmac.org or call 914-576-4657.
Lincoln Avenue Arts & Culture Festival Part of Arts Fest
The Charles W. Dickerson Fife, Drum & Bugle Corps will open the Lincoln Avenue Arts & Culture Fest on Saturday, September 22nd as part of ArtsFest, the weekend-long celebration featuring 32 venues in New Rochelle and Pelham. (For a complete calendar of ArtsFest events visit www.newrochellearts.org.) The Charles W. Dickerson Fife, Drum & Bugle Corps is a historic marching band that has performed all over the country since its founding in 1929 as a Boy Scout Band of Troop 16 that served the African American community in New Rochelle. The Corps’ first appearance was at New Rochelle’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in 1929 and the Corps has been a hit and popular attraction ever since. The Corps will get things started on Saturday at 11 am at Prince Street and Lincoln Avenue, by leading a parade to Lincoln Park, where grow!Lincoln Park has organized a festival featuring dance, music, arts, crafts and food. Damon Jackson, a drum facilitator, will host a drum circle for twenty drummers pounding out rhythms on a variety of percussive instruments, and Jeani Miller will conduct a story hour for children 6 and up at 1pm and 3pm. grow! Lincoln Park Community Garden Committee Members will be on hand at the garden to guide visitors on a tour of the organic, sustainable urban garden. There will also be grow! T-shirts and refreshments available.
There will also be a marketplace at Lincoln Park (located opposite Bethesda Baptist Church, 71 Lincoln Avenue) with authors – including Inga Watkins, Henry May and Linda Tarrant-Reid — signing their books; food will be provided by Neil’s Cafe, Chef El-Amin and D’Chef. The marketplace will also feature vendors like jewelry by Filigree and Lisa Ray, and natural beauty products by Phylicia Henry.
Kyra Johnson’s New Beginnings Dance Company will conduct dance workshops at Bethesda Baptist Church at 71 Lincoln Avenue, where there will also be a film screening on bullying and a photographic exhibit on display. St. Catherine A.M.E. Zion Church at 19 Lincoln Avenue has on display the Museum of Arts & Culture’s original exhibit “Reflections of Change,” which documents the landmark 1961 Taylor v. Board of Education of New Rochelle desegregation case, and will also offer a chicken and fish fry for the hungry fest-goer. Shiloh Baptist Church, at 185 Lincoln Avenue, will host an afternoon of performing arts, visual arts and culinary arts.
The ArtsFest culture trolley will make stops for the Lincoln Arts & Culture Fest at Memorial Highway and Lincoln Avenue and in front of Bethesda Baptist Church. For more information visit: www.newrochellearts.org or call 914-576-7150
Top: A necklace by Just Funki, one of the unique designs on display during ArtsFest.
Middle: Becky Mills and Jesus Baez, 2009 graduates of New Rochelle High School, who put together “Concept Cube.”
Bottom: A 1931 Chevrolet Sports coupe will be one of the classic cars on view at the antique auto show, “Art, Culture and Design of the Automobile,” part of ArtsFest.