Deptford Twp. – Six illustrious artists will bring their distinctive, elegant works to Rowan College at Gloucester County (RCGC) in celebration of Black History Month on Saturday, Jan. 31 from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Dr. Ross Beitzel Art Gallery.
Artists H. Alonzo Jennings, Clifford Maddox, Dressler Smith, Howard N. Watson, Ida Young and Ronald Young will proudly display their collection of fine art, photography and poetry thanks in part to the South Jersey Chapter of LINKS – a Philadelphia-based non-profit organization that has sprouted more than 250 chapters aimed to help communities with civic and cultural education since 1946.
Jennings, a retired teacher and jazz aficionado from Paterson, N.J., began exploring photography in the mid-1960s and eventually earned a veritable reputation as one of the nation's premiere jazz photographers. He's also an established poet, producing several volumes of published works.
"My objective as an artist/photographer/poet," Jennings said, "is to provide a visual/poetic record of the sublime moments of transcendence where my subject, animate or inanimate, touches or is touched by the spirit and is elevated."
Maddox, a native of Newark, has had his fine abstract paintings displayed throughout Atlantic City, Trenton and New York City. The Kean alum has also had a hand in centuries-old restorations of paintings in the Trenton Capitol Building, as well as the building's opulent golden dome.
Smith, a nationally-recognized artist and colorist, has earned a fair bit of celebrity fanfare for her work by the likes of icons Coretta Scott King and Oprah Winfrey. Inspired, as she says, by "the beauty of things created by God and not by man," Smith has also produced splendid glass works, which have been used in churches throughout New Jersey.
Celebrating Life Through the Arts: The Inspirational Journey of Dressler Smith catalogs her experiences from her days as a Moore University graduate in 1980, to her inspirational rise as one of the region's most celebrated visual artists.
Several prints of well-regarded watercolorist Howard N. Watson's vaunted collection will also be on display, in addition to some pieces that are already a part of RCGC's permanent art collection, courtesy of patron Michael Sharp. The Wyncote, Pennsylvania native has had work commissioned by the likes of U.S. Presidents Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, former Vice President Walter Mondale, Naismith Basketball Hall Of Fame coach "Dr." Jack Ramsay and a gamut of domestic and international collectors.
Fine artists Ida and Ronald Young, who produce colorful personal portraits, will also be displayed during the exhibit's month-long residency.
The show will run until March 5 in the Art Gallery located in the College Center. The gallery is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturday 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information, call 856-415-2122.
Rowan College at Gloucester County is located at 1400 Tanyard Road in Deptford, just off Exit 56 of Route 55.