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(PDF) (DOC) (JPG)March 3, 2009

MAHWAH – An exhibit of works by Australian Aboriginal artists will be on view in the Kresge Gallery in the Russ Berrie Center for Performing and Visual Arts Thursday, March 26 through April 24.  An opening reception and preview will be held Wednesday, March 25 from 5 to 7 p.m.

Collection Dialogue: Aboriginal Art” will feature paintings from the Utopia region of Australia, named by German settlers in the 1920s who immigrated to Australia hoping for a better life.  The exhibition concept was sparked by visitors to the Rodman Collection of Haitian art at Ramapo College, who frequently remarked that certain works reminded them of Aboriginal art.

One piece by Levoy Exil from the Rodman Collection will be presented near the entrance to the Kresge Gallery to accentuate this intriguing visual affinity, and serve as a conversation piece.  The Aboriginal works are on loan from the renowned Robert Steele Gallery in New York, one of the few galleries in the United States that has a strong history of dealing with Aboriginal art in a significant way.  Many of the Aboriginal works in this exhibition were originally presented at the Robert Steele Gallery in another project entitled “New Work From Utopia.”

Among the artists included in the exhibition will be the late Emily Kame Kngwarreye, who helped pave the way for contemporary Australian Aboriginal art, Gloria Petyarre, Minnie Pwerle and Barbara Weir.

Considered by some to be the world’s last great art movement, Aboriginal art is rich and complex, with its roots in an ancient and still functioning indigenous culture.

This program is made possible, in part, by funds from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts.  The Kresge Gallery is located in the Berrie Center for Performing and Visual Arts at Ramapo College.  Hours are Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 1 to 5 p.m. and Wednesday, 1 to 7 p.m.  For more information, call Sydney Jenkins, gallery director, (201) 684-7147.

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Ramapo College of New Jersey is the state’s premier public liberal arts college and is committed to academic excellence through interdisciplinary and experiential learning, and international and intercultural understanding. The College is ranked #1 among New Jersey public institutions by College Choice, has been named one of the 50 Most Beautiful College Campuses in America by CondeNast Traveler, and is recognized as a top college by U.S. News & World Report, Kiplinger’s, Princeton Review and Money magazine, among others. Ramapo College is also distinguished as a Career Development College of Distinction by CollegesofDistinction.com, boasts the best campus housing in New Jersey on Niche.com, and is designated a “Military Friendly College” in Victoria Media’s Guide to Military Friendly Schools.

Established in 1969, Ramapo College offers bachelor’s degrees in the arts, business, data science, humanities, social sciences and the sciences, as well as in professional studies, which include business, education, nursing and social work. In addition, the College offers courses leading to teacher certification at the elementary and secondary levels, and offers graduate programs leading to master’s degrees in Accounting, Business Administration, Creative Music Technology, Data Science, Educational Technology, Educational Leadership, Nursing, Social Work and Special Education, as well as a post-master’s Doctor of Nursing Practice.

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