Press Release

For Immediate Release: May 2, 2011

Scotch Plains & Fanwood Art Association Members Exhibit at Freeholders Gallery

ELIZABETH, NJ – The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders is proud to present artworks by the members of the Scotch Plains and Fanwood Art Association (SPFAA). The exhibit is on display through June 1 at the Freeholders Gallery located on the 6th floor of the Union County Administration Building, Elizabethtown Plaza, Elizabeth. Gallery hours are Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

“These talented artists based in Scotch Plains and Fanwood work in various media including photography, watercolor, pastel, and sculpture,” said Freeholder Bette Jane Kowalski, liaison to the Cultural and Heritage Programs Advisory Board. “We’re happy to share their images with a larger audience by exhibiting their work at the Freeholders Gallery.”

The SPFAA members featured are Bill Connolly, Marion Derrett, Tracy Farrell, Sylvie MacDonald, Mike McKenna, Paula Pearl, Connie Pinkowski, Donna Stein, and Steve Willis.

Bill Connolly studied drawing at the duCret School of Art, the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, and the Montclair Art Museum. He is a native of Scranton, PA and a resident of Garwood. Connolly is a trustee of the Millburn-Short Hills Arts Center and a member of the Livingston and Westfield Art Associations.

Marion Derrett is a native of England who studied to be a teacher. She has won various awards for her paintings of landscapes, still life, and portraits. Her inspiration comes from traveling to many countries. Derrett is a juried associate member of the Pastel Society of America and the American Artists Professional League.

Tracy Farrell is a resident of Union County. She began seriously taking digital photographs in 2010. Her photos have been shown at local and international juried shows in New Jersey and New York as member of both SPFAA and the Milburn-Short Hills Art Center.

Sylvie MacDonald was born in France. Her witty and whimsical artwork is influenced by her heritage and culture. She has developed a love for folktales from her travels around the world. Also a Spanish and French instructor, she loves to combine learning with humorous visual materials.

Mike McKenna is a self-taught photographer who has honed his art by reading, trial and error, and by studying the masters of landscape photography: Ed and Brett Weston, Ansel Adams, and Art Wolf. He has won awards with his own style based on natural lighting and heavy contrast.

Paula Pearl has a background in photography which she feels has a strong influence on the lighting and composition of her paintings. She is drawn to scenes with water. Many of her paintings show quiet, serene, ethereal places that come from her love of nature and the beauty around us.

Connie Pinkowski earned a BFA in photography at Rochester Institute of Technology. She also studied photography and silkscreen printing at duCret School of Art in Plainfield and at LBI Foundation of Arts and Sciences in Long Beach Island. She taught photography at the Scotch Plains Library and has conducted art workshops for teens and adults.

Donna Stein, after a 40-year teaching career, has become a pastel painter, drawn to pastels because of the immediacy of the medium. She holds a BS from Southern Connecticut University plus a BS and an MA from Seton Hall University.

Steven Willis is the owner/operator of a bicycle shop in Scotch Plains and has been interested in art as far back as he can remember. His wife helped re-inspire him to pursue art. He started with graphite and progressed to other media, now focusing on portraits.

For further information about the Scotch Plains & Fanwood Art Association, please visit www.spfaa.org or contact Paula Pearl at (908) 322-2590. To learn about exhibiting at the Freeholders Gallery, please contact the curator, Teya David, at the Union County Office of Cultural and Heritage Affairs. Telephone (908) 558- 2550 or email culturalinfo@ucnj.org. NJ Relay users dial 711.

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