In Form: Contemporary Sculptural Ceramics
Opening Reception Sunday Oct. 9, 1- 4 pm. On view October 9 through November 30, 2016

In Form takes a look at how contemporary ceramic forms have evolved since its freedom from function after World War II.  Free to diverge from traditional pottery, these ceramists use humor, abstraction, social and political commentary as well as architectural forms. The exhibit will be on view October 9 through November 30, 2016, with an opening reception Sunday, Oct. 9, 1- 4 pm.

Jocelyn Armstrong
Lisa Knaus
Kirsten Lyon
Jennifer McCurdy
Leigh Taylor Mickelson
Sana Musasama
Kelly Jean Ohl
Jeff Pender
Max Seinfeld
Janine Sopp

The power of Sana Musasama’s work rises from her iconic forms. Her expressive clay works are not only free from the utilitarian form but they are a reaction to free us from concepts and judgments within bondage boundaries. Musasama is inspired by social issues and harsh or abusive conditions. Her sculptures are steeped in a deep compassion for those afflicted. Her Maple Tree Series refers to the abolitionists in the 19th century and the hopes that the Maple Syrup industry would help end slavery. The Unspeakable series deals with the circumcision of women in the world, denied the free expression of their own bodies. She sees her art as a personal instrument of change and proves that an artist can change lives for the better, while still creating beauty.

Jennifer McCurdy pays attention only to the form by giving homage to the organisms and patterns found in her natural environment of Martha’s Vineyard. Working in porcelain she pushes the boundaries of her materials to see how thin they can be or how much she can cut away and still maintain the structural integrity. She creates a dance of movement in her work, giving the hard surface of her ceramic material the illusion of being delicate.

Jocelyn Braxton Armstrong creates sculptures with a fresh sophistication and modern aesthetic that link fine art with craft. She has developed a signature technique of building black and white porcelain ceramic sculptures to look delicately stitched together.

Leigh Taylor Mickelson’s organic ceramic sculptures explore the different components of self, sexuality and family, and how these components relate and conflict with one another. Mickelson uses forms from nature, especially those found in plant life, as a means of expression. The elements of natural forms act as a metaphor for the spiritual, emotional and physical extremes that exist within us, our love relationships and family units.




Henry Varnum Poor: A small selection of works
October 9-November 30, 2016

RoCA is proud to present the work of Henry Varnum Poor who was an important contributor to the Rockland Center for the Arts in its formative years.

Henry Varnum Poor was an influential American architect, painter, sculptor, muralist, and potter. He was born in Chapman, Kansas in 1887, and a grandnephew of the Henry Varnum Poor who was a founder of the predecessor firm to Standard & Poor’s. Poor attended Stanford University, studied painting at the Slade School in London and under painter Walter Sickert, and then attended the Academie Julian in Paris. He returned to the United States in 1911 and taught art at Stanford University before moving to San Francisco to teach at the San Francisco Art Association.

In the beginning of the 20th century the production of ceramics was dominated by large factories employing skilled craftsmen to make utilitarian objects such as pots, bowls, vases and plates. There were few exceptions. During the early part of this century so-called art potteries were established producing artistically rendered and almost sculptural ceramics, although still utilitarian.

Experimentation and invention became significant in the U.S. after World War II. Returning vets had a strong desire to experiment with new ways of self-expression. This created new arts departments in glassmaking and ceramics. Artists updated forms, free to diverge from traditional pottery to create entire new approaches. Some of these added humor or social commentary by juxtaposing elements not traditionally associated with utilitarian ceramics.  Others used more painterly methods, while some created non-utilitarian sculpture.

He was a self-taught leader in the contemporary world of ceramics after World War II. Poor lead a new generation of ceramists to pave the transformation of the vessel using the medium in spontaneous and intuitively expressive ways. His ceramics are in the permanent collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, the Newark Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and ceramics designed for Radio City Music Hall.  He also has works in the collections of the Whitney Museum and the Philips Collection.  He wrote a book entitled From Mud to Immortality.

As a pioneer in the potter’s craft, Henry Varnum Poor has probably done more than any other person in lifting the stature of American ceramics to its present vigorous and respected level. A longtime resident of Rockland County, Poor died on December 8, 1970 in New City, New York. We are grateful to his son, Peter Poor, for the loan of Henry’s artwork.




Angle of View: The Photographs of Ned Harris
Opening Reception: Sunday September 11, 1:00-4:00pm
On view in Gallery One & Gallery Two through October 2


Rockland Center for the Arts will be kicking off a yearlong theme of looking at its past legacy and its future going forward. In that spirit, our first exhibit “Angle of View” will feature the photography of long time RoCA Board member and curator, Ned Harris in Gallery One and Two. His early career was painting in The Ghost Army during WWII. After the war he designed cosmetic packages and painted. He started taking the camera seriously in 1955 and would beach comb along the Hudson River for items to transform into photographic still-life.

To those at Rockland Center of the Arts who knew and loved him, it is his “eye” and his sense of humor that stood out. We pay tribute to the many wonderful exhibitions that he curated at RoCA and his varied talents as painter, photographer and curator.


Contemporary Hudson Valley Artists: RoCA Faculty Exhibit
Opening Reception: Sunday September 11, 1:00-4:00pm
On view in the Emerson Gallery through October September 25

“Contemporary Hudson Valley Artists”, in the Emerson Gallery, celebrates the present vision of the teaching artists at RoCA. Early founders, Rockland residents and patrons – Helen Hayes, Henry Varnum Poor, Aaron Copland, Paulette Goddard and Burgess Meredith had a goal “to make use of the abundant artistic talent available by offering courses of instruction, arts and crafts exhibitions, lectures….courses of instruction for children and adults of arts and crafts under teachers of a caliber seldom available outside of New York City.”

Seventy years later, RoCA is very fortunate to be continuing the legacy of our founders. The exceptional faculty here actively creates, teaches and exhibits throughout the Hudson Valley and the U.S.

Don Bradford
Julia Breer
Jane CoCo Cowles
John Creagh
Sally Lipton Derringer
Colleen Dopico
Dan Dugan
Karen Edelmann
Daly Flanagan
Barbara Galazzo
Maddie Goldman
Catherine Graham
Jane Herold
Marlene Krumm Sanders
Paula Madawick
Stephanie Maddalena
Tenley Marshall Escoffrey
Eleanor Miller
Patti Mollica
Howard Nathenson
Kanitra Perrault
Janet Pirozzi-Riolo
Barbara Pollitt
John Rosis
Laura Shapiro
Jim Shaugnessy
Margery Theroux
Colleen Vanderhoef
Laura Vogel
Ryan Williams


VCS Rockland County Pride Exhibit & Sale at RoCA
Opening Reception Sunday June 5, 1:00-5:00pm. On view through Saturday, June 18, 2016

Images: 1 - Stone by Joel Zaklin, 2 - Yellow House by Caren Sommer Lazar, 3 - Keene Valley by  Michele Paradiso



Rockland Center for the Arts is proud to once again be partnering with VCS of Rockland for its Rockland County Pride Exhibit & Sale at RoCA. The exhibit will be held at Rockland Center for the Arts with the opening reception on Sunday, June 5th, 1 pm – 5 pm which is free and open to the public. All of the art on view is for sale with proceeds benefiting Volunteer Counseling Services and the many programs it offers to the residents of Rockland County VCS is a counseling and family service agency with an anti-racist, social justice mission.

Founded in 1970 as the "Volunteer Family Counseling Project" of the Family Service Assoc. of Rockland County. Their programs are wide ranging and far reaching including; Assisting Victims of Domestic Violence, Post Divorce Parenting programs, Grandparents/Relatives Raising Children Support , Advocacy for Parents/Guardians of Special Need Children, Caregiver Support Group, Corporate Community Outreach, LGBT Coalition, Transgender Support Groups, Social and Racial Support, Mental Health Services and Families in Need of Support services.

Founded in 1970 to serve Rockland County, the organization has grown and now provides services to Rockland, Orange, Sullivan, Westchester, Kings, Queens, Manhattan, and Staten Island.

We hope you will come and support VCS on June 5th at RoCA. The exhibit will be on view through Saturday, June 18, 2016. Gallery hours are 1:00 – 5:00 pm Thursday through Sunday.

Featured Artist: Ted Ludwiczak

Participating Artists:
Robert Adzema
Susan Barrasi
Rebecca Bassin
Diane Churchill
Beverley Bozarth Colgan
Jane Cowles
Michael Craft
Lisa D'Amico
Joan Dengler
Chris DeTora
Heather Leigh Douglas
Karen Williams Edelmann
Daniel Garcia
Virginia Geerdes
Trine Glaever
Sara Goodman
Art Gunther
Livia Gus
Julian Harvey
Mary Ann Heinzen
Mark Kassis
Susanna Kitson
Rob Kovacs
Joseph LaMattina
Neil Lavey
Janet Lee Burnett
Barbara Levitt
Arolodo Lodolini
Daniel Lukens
Beryl Maddalena
Karen Martin
Jamie Namath
Jeanie Neyer
Natalie O'Donnell
Michele Paradiso
Jan Valerie Polk
Gerda Quoohs
Natasha Rabin
Ellen Joyce Rabinowitz
Carl Rattner
William Rauschenberg
Gina Rubin
Elaine Schloss
Julie Scholz
Madge Scott
Rosemarie Servillo
Laura Shapiro
Jim Shaughnessy
Penny Shenkin
Carlos Sierra
Ken Silvestri
Barbara Soloff-Levy
Caren Sommer-Lazar
Jeff Spindel
Lynn Stein
Joan Strier
June Sundvik
Mitchell Visoky
Ira Weinberg
Deena Weintraub
Marilu Zahn
Joel Zaklin