May 26, 2005

Artists Offer Vignettes of Brooklyn

Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) showcases four local artists in new exhibitions that celebrate Brooklyn through photographs, essays and paintings. The exhibits bring together diverse characterizations of Brooklyn through different forms of media and will be on display at the Central Library, Grand Army Plaza from May 17, 2005 to June 26, 2005.

"El-Views" is an exhibition of 16 original acrylic on paper paintings by Maria Dominguez that were transformed into stained glass creations by the New York City Mass Transit Authority for display at the Chauncey Street Station on the J & Z lines in Brooklyn. The motifs are those precious daily tasks so often overlooked by the heavy demands of a busy city life. Dominguez describes the paintings as "illustrated stories of Brooklyn and the people who live and work in it." The exhibit is a culmination of personal interviews that she conducted with local residents about their experiences in Brooklyn. She attempts to capture the humanity of each person who inspired her. Maria Dominguez has had several exhibitions of her artwork and created many community murals in her 20 years as a public artist. El-Views will be on display at the Central Lobby's Lobby Gallery.

"The Fragile City" by Philippe Dollo is a selection of black and white photographs evoking moments in the urban milieu. The photographs are part of a wider project that presents the results of a confrontation of a European's perception of the American myth. Dollo's attraction toward the spirit and culture of this country dates back to his childhood and adolescence. The pictures evoke fleeting encounters, stares and random moments when tenderness alternates with the bizarre, and daily routines suddenly plunge into a parallel dimension. In this very real, yet at times nightmarish urban dream, the individual encounters an eternal companion: solitude. Born in Paris, Philippe Dollo worked as a freelance photographer for various French magazines and newspapers before moving to New York in 1997 as a permanent correspondent for Opale, the leading French photo agency for portraits of authors. The Fragile City will be on view at the Central Library's Grand Lobby.

"Brooklyn As I Remember" is a collection of street photographs documenting a particular time and space in Brooklyn as Lucille Fornasieri-Gold reflects on her experiences. As a street photographer fascinated by the mingling of diverse cultures and customs in America, Fornasieri-Gold discovers the evolving ethos and richness of its interactions. The common thread among the diverse groups is that they all seem to grab on to the idea of democracy, the freedom to do and say as they please. Having lived in New York most of her life, Fornasieri-Gold has seen the radical change in nuance and the opening up of society. Born in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, Lucille Fornasieri-Gold attended Hunter College and the Arts Student League. She took to photography instantly after receiving her first camera as a gift and began an intense 10-year period of shooting. Her photos are available for viewing at the Central Library's Grand Lobby.

"A Walk Along the Waterfront" by Sophie Fenwick is a series of photographs and essays depicting Brooklyn's changing waterfront. Fenwick has been documenting the images for the past 15 years, silently recollecting the history of the places she explores. The project re-animates these forgotten treasures, recalling the past glory of the sites which surround the town like a crumbling fort. Sophie Fenwick was born in New York and raised in Paris. She studied photography at Parsons School of Design and the International Center of Photography. She currently works as an assistant photo editor at Magnum Photos, as well as a graphic designer and photographer for a catalogue documenting the art-event "A Walk on the SoHo Side." Her exhibit will be on display in the Balcony Cases on the second floor of the Central Library.

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