"Dangerous Women Two" Features Works by 69 Female Artists
Inspired by 20th Century Women at Gallery Sept. 4-Oct. 6

8/3/07


What do you get when you combine 69 of the region's most outstanding women artists with 69 women activists, adventurers and artists from the last century? You get a combustible mixture of art, history, and life -- "Dangerous Women Two" -- one of the season's most unique installations. The multiple-media exhibition debuts in The Gallery at Mercer in September, running from Tuesday, Sept. 4 through Saturday, Oct. 6. An opening reception will be held Saturday, Sept. 8, 2 to 5 p.m. The Gallery is under the direction of curator Tricia Fagan and is located on the second floor of the Communications Building on Mercer's West Windsor campus at 1200 Old Trenton Road.

Fagan invited regional artists to each select one of the historic "dangerous woman" as the inspiration for an original work of art that will be on display in this show. These dangerous women were all artists, activists or visionaries from this same geographic region who were active during the period between the two World Wars. Researched by Fagan, they represent a broad spectrum of women who took artistic and personal risks, and challenged the roles of womanhood, art, and society.

The result is 70 dramatic works in oils, watercolors, mixed-media collages, stone, metal, photography, prints, jewelry, and more. The artists' works will be displayed beside a text panel featuring a short biography of the historic figure they selected. Artist statements exploring these relationships will be available in The Gallery for the duration of the exhibit. A catalog of the exhibit is being compiled. The show is a collaboration between MCCC and Trenton Avant-Garde, a nonprofit Trenton-based arts organization. It has received generous support from the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation.

Fagan became interested in the project more than a decade ago as she read about women from this region who had been making ground-breaking contributions as visual artists, photographers, fashion designers, writers, performers, and activists in the 1920s and 1930s. "As I read about more and more of these women, I kept asking myself, 'Why haven't I heard more about them before?' These were astounding, risk-taking, amazingly modern women who were bold - often fearless - in the way they approached their lives," she said.

This mixed-media piece by Arlene Milgram
is inspired by the work of abstract expressionist
painter Lee Krasner.
This fiber art sculpture by Lisa Fuellemann
is inspired by the life of writer Regina Jones Woody.
This matching set by jewelry designer
Martha Runyon is inspired by the exquisitely
complex jewelry of Miriam Haskell.

Paying tribute to their pioneering efforts became Fagan's passion, an idea that was embraced by local artists in the first "Dangerous Women" show, which featured 42 artists in 1996-97 at Joe's Mill Hill Saloon and the Ellarslie Museum in Trenton. "I thought that was it, but the show wouldn't go away," Fagan says.

In the years since the first show, Fagan continued to compile mini-biographies of fascinating women. Among the more than 100 women who made Fagan's tri-state list are writer and poet Dorothy Parker, Precisionist painter Elsie Driggs, printmaker Minna Citron, and sculptor Dorothea Schwartz-Greenbaum. Two New Yorkers on the Dangerous Women list, artist and sculptor Louise Bourgeois and photographer Helen Levitt, are still living.

An educational guide will be available for teachers and parents. Gallery talks and other special events associated with this exhibit will be announced. The Gallery is funded, in part, through a grant from the Mercer County Cultural & Heritage Commission through funding from the NJ State Council on the Arts/Department of State.

A list of the artists and their selected historical subjects is available on the Gallery website. Expanded gallery hours for this show are Tuesday and Wednesday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.; and 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Thursday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., and 7 to 9 p.m.; Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Saturday (except for opening reception), 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.; and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

For additional information, visit:

The Gallery at Mercer
Dangerous Women Two

Directions to MCCC

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