Arts & Entertainment

Press Releases

Essex County Artists The Visual Passion Duo to Show in Two Upcoming Exhibitions


Essex County Artists The Visual Passion Duo To Show in Two Upcoming Exhibitions

LIVINGSTON, NJ — Painters Mikel Frank and Gerard Amsellem, together known as the Visual Passion Duo, are reuniting this winter to produce their latest live painting demonstration, honor Amsellem’s brother, and display their work at two Essex County events.

Beginning on Sunday, Amsellem’s Frére, a show about two brothers, honors his brother, mentor and fellow artist Alain Amsellem. To mark the tenth anniversary of Alain’s death, both brothers’ paintings will hang side-by-side at Livingston’s Riker Hill Art Park, where Gerard, a Livingston High School teacher, currently has his studio and where Gerard and Frank shared a studio for many years.

Sign Up for E-News

Frank is travelling from Charlotte, NC to join Gerard in one of their popular live painting demonstrations on the opening day of the show. They will collaborate on their first three-dimensional work.

Later that evening, Gerard will screen Vincent and Theo, Robert Altman’s 1990 film about another pair of artistic brothers—Vincent and Theo Van Gogh. A discussion about the film will follow the screening.

Frére, a show about two brothers runs from Jan. 29 through Feb. 26 at the new exhibition space in Building 509 at Riker Hill Art Park.

Opening day events will take place on Jan. 29 from 4 to 8 p.m. The Visual Passion Duo’s live painting begins at 5 p.m., and the screening of Vincent and Theo begins at 6:30 p.m.

The second event—The Color of Energy; Energy of Color, an exhibition of expressive abstraction—opens in February at the Valley Arts Firehouse Gallery in Orange.

Featured artists Mikel Frank and Aida Jones have co-curated a selection of works by 21 abstract painters. The work investigates the relationship between color and vital energy. Frank and Gerard will be represented with several paintings, each including one of their collaborative door pieces. 

The exhibition opens with a reception on Saturday, Feb. 4, from 7 to 9:30 p.m. with live music by Steve Jones and an open wine bar. The Color of Energy; Energy of Color closes Saturday, Feb. 25.  

The Valley Arts Firehouse Gallery is located at 580 Forest Street, Orange, New Jersey.

Gerard Amsellem and Mikel Frank joined forces in 2010 to become the Visual Passion Duo. While continuing to maintain their individual artistic careers, they have produced numerous live painting demonstrations—unique events in which the two men collaboratively paint large-scale abstract works with music accompaniment.

They describe this unique collaboration as “creating a third artist.”

According to the artists, these collaborative paintings would not be possible without the mutual agreement that the artists can paint out anything the other does without argument.

They created their first piece, entitled The Passing, in memory of departed loved ones during an April 2011 demonstration in Maplewood. Since then, they have made many other large canvases and door panels in demonstrations throughout New Jersey.

In July 2012, they hosted Visual Passion: On Love (The Visual Passion Experience). This four-day event included live painting demonstrations, participatory activities for spectators as well as music, film, and interviews focusing on the topic of love.

Paintings by the Visual Passion Duo currently hang in the James Buchanan Room at Maplewood’s DeHart Community Center and the South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC).

Frank moved to North Carolina in 2015, but he and Gerard continue to work together frequently. Their most recent collaboration took place at 1978 Maplewood Arts Center in July 2016 in conjunction with the exhibition, Off the Shelf: A Tribute to June Cater. Learn more about the Visual Passion Duo at Prints of their past collaborative projects are also available online.

Mikel Frank is a New Jersey native and abstract painter who graduated from the Maryland Institute College of Art (BFA) and Pratt Institute (MFA). He worked at the Metropolitan Museum of Art for many years and was very active in the Maplewood arts scene. He now lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife and has recently been asked to be a Docent at The Mint Museum in Charlotte.

Visit his website at

Gerard Amsellem is an abstract painter, filmmaker, and film critic. He was born in Morocco, grew up in France, graduated from the University of Paris, and now lives in New Jersey. Gerard runs La Cinematheque film club and teaches film at Livingston High School. Visit him online at

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News


deAmour Salon - Complimentary Blowout with Other Select Services - $40+ Value

March 24, 2018

Millburn, NJ - Salon Profilo in Milburn has recently rebranded to deAmour Salon & Spa! In celebration, owners Roula and Grace are inviting new and existing clients to enjoy a complimentary blowout with any color service. Call (973) 379-8300 to schedule your appointment. Promo code: TAP COLOR

deAmor Salon specializes in multiple coloring techniques and stays current on industry ...

Guerrero Martial Arts Kids - 50% OFF

CALDWELL, NJ - Guerrero Martial Arts in Caldwell is offering 50% off of their regular 6 week trial program.  Regular price of $69 is being slashed in half to only $34.59 for a limited time only. 

Redeem this discount by clicking HERE and entering in coupon code: TAPKIDS

Six week package includes 12 lessons (2x per week) and a uniform!

" Martial arts ...

Livingston Smiles - $150 Value

LIVINGSTON, NJ - Livingston Smiles is offering a Smile Analysis and FREE consultation - $150 value.  Call today to make an appointment: (973) 992-4099.  Mention this ad to claim this offer!

Take the quiz to find out if you should take advantage Dr. Krugmans' offer!

About Dr. Krugman:

A lifetime resident of Livingston, Dr. Gary Krugman has dedicated over 35 years to ...

10% OFF at Advantage Pest Control

WEST ORANGE, NJ - Advantage Pest Control is now offering 10% OFF new termite services. Call now to take advantage of this limit time offer! Call and ask for the "TAP DISCOUNT" (973) 736-1007

"We combine our knowledge of construction and termite biology so we can offer the right options for treatment to fit any situation and budget. We feature Termidor termiticide ...

Upcoming Events


Mon, March 26, 9:00 AM

My Tech Learning STEM EdVenture Lab, Livingston

Calling All Artists & Inventors to My Tech's ...

Arts & Entertainment Education

Mon, March 26, 1:30 PM

Livingston Public Library, Livingston

Monday at the Movies: THE ZOOKEEPER'S WIFE

Arts & Entertainment


Tue, March 27, 9:00 AM

My Tech Learning STEM EdVenture Lab, Livingston

Calling All Artists & Inventors to My Tech's ...

Arts & Entertainment Education

West Orange Synagogues to Offer Pre-Passover Events and Community Seders

March 20, 2018

WEST ORANGE, NJ – With Passover fast approaching on the evening of March 30, synagogues throughout West Orange are helping people prepare for the holiday by inviting the public to attend community Seders.

B’nai Shalom, located at 300 Pleasant Valley Way, kicked off its pre-Passover events on March 11 with its first Passover Cooking & Crafting for Kids ...

Valyrian Steel: Where is it All? Should We Still Care?

There is a glaring hole in recent Game of Thrones seasons that needs to be addressed: the ability of Valyrian steel to destroy White Walkers has not been acknowledged since before Jon Snow’s death.

In fact, it hasn’t been mentioned since the Season Five finale when Jon Snow reveals this discovery to Sam Tarly. Jon has cared about little more than the war between the living and ...

Temple B’nai Abraham Welcomes Newborn Chicks to the Early School

March 20, 2018

LIVINGSTON, NJ — When Farmer Eric from Quiver Farms, Pennsburg, PA, came to The Early School of Temple B’nai Abraham last week and brought two incubators, brooder boxes and two-dozen incubated eggs,  the students were excited about the prospects of such an exciting event happening in their classrooms.  

It was even better than the students and their teachers ever ...

Former Rumson Student Arrested for Possessing MSR-15 Patrol Rifle, Silencer, Explosive Chemicals

March 19, 2018

MONMOUTH, NJ — A former Rumson High School student, Maximilien Reynolds, 19, was arrested in Ithaca, NY, and charged with Possession of an Unregistered Destructive Device/Silencer, False Statement in Acquisition of a Firearm and False Statement in Required Firearm Record.

Specifically, he is alleged to have possessed an MSR-15 Patrol ...

Coffee, Tea or Fleas?

Two ducks are on a flight to Miami.  The first duck says to the second, “you flying south for the winter?”  The second duck replies, “Oh wow, a talking emotional support duck!”


Pa rum pum.


There have been a lot of news stories lately about animals traveling on airplanes.  Some are humorous, like the woman who recently tried to bring ...