Arts & Entertainment

Press Releases

SOPAC’s Herb & Milly Iris Gallery Unveils a New Art Exhibition Featuring works by artists Alberte Bernier and Ritch Gaiti – Curated by Micha Hamilton

CENOTE by Alberte Bernier / 28”x24”, oil on canvas  
by Ritch Gaiti / 24”x30”, oil on canvas

The South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC) unveils the latest in its rotating series of visual art exhibitions in the Herb & Milly Iris Gallery at SOPAC. On view now through April 30, 2016, is SPIRITED, an exhibit featuring paintings by artists Alberte Bernier and Ritch Gaiti, and curated by Micha Hamilton. The artwork on exhibit is for sale with partial proceeds supporting SOPAC.

SPIRITED is a celebration of the energy, enthusiasm and determination of character, outlook and mood beyond the perceived limitations, and often opposing ideals, of Nature vs. Nurture.

Haitian born Alberte Bernier is a visual artist who lives and works in New York City.  For Alberte painting represents a profound source of freedom as well as a desire to convey human emotion and fantasy. Like the human experience, which is multi-leveled, what appear to be basic colors in her art are superimposed nuances. She works in multiple mediums such as oil, acrylic, charcoal, textile, and mixed media as well as employing found objects.

Sign Up for E-News

Although born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Ritch Gaiti became visually attracted to the American west and the Native American culture by the warm colors and the spiritual nature of the people and the land. Inspired by the works of the legendary photographer Edward S. Curtis and his colleagues who chronicled Native American Indian life in the 19th and 20th centuries, he became sympathetic to the Native American history and their fallen journey. He paints of the people, the land and the spirits and tries to recapture a feeling of a time and culture long-gone.

About Alberte Bernier (Artist)

Alberte holds a BA from City College and an MA from New York University.  She studied painting at the Art Students League and also with gifted art teacher Edla Cusick. She is an artist in residence at Chashama. She has exhibited at the New York State Museum (Albany), Ceres gallery (NYC), Pleiades gallery (NYC), hob’art gallery (NJ), and The Drawing Room (NJ).

Alberte has traveled to numerous countries for cultural research including Canada, China, France, India, Mexico, Morocco, Vietnam and Thailand. She was featured in singer-composer Tecla Esposito’s artful fantasy music video entitled “Fake Tears”.

For more information about Alberte and her art, visit www.albertebernier.com

About Ritch Gaiti (Artist)

Ritch is an artist who has been painting for over twenty years and only recently began to exhibit publicly. He has been awarded the Plainsman, the People's Choice Award at the American Plains Artists show in 2009. He has exhibited in most states in galleries and museums including: 

International Museum of the Horse, International Museum of Art, El Paso, The Gilcrease Museum, The American Quarter Horse Association Museum, The Great Plains Art Museum, The Pearce Museum, The Customs House Museum, The Trenton City Museum, and The Ellen Noel Museum.

Known for his evocative expression and emotion of the subject as well as his textured application of paint, Ritch has rapidly built a strong following with collectors and galleries throughout the world. His work has appeared in many magazines including Gallery and Studio, Southwest Art, The Best Artists of America, and Art of the West. Recently his work was featured in Horses in Art magazine; his painting, Night Moves, is on the cover. 

He has studied with Micheal Madigan and developed his own style of expression. He won the Judges Award of Merit in the Trail of Painted Ponies National Art Competition 2006, and is a member of the Oil Painters of America and American Plains Artists. He has appeared many times on national television and radio and has been featured in several art magazines.

For more information about Ritch and his art, visit www.gaiti.com

About Micha Hamilton (Curator)

Originally from Los Angeles, California, Micha Hamilton is a published photographer, filmmaker, writer and graphic designer. Since 2009, Mr. Hamilton has been curating events and exhibitions in the greater New York/New Jersey area, drawing on his passion for art and utilizing his extensive production, live entertainment and multi-media events experience.

In 2010, he co-founded the visual arts exhibition and production space GAS Gallery and Studio in Maplewood, NJ. He is Owner and Art Director of MHP+D/Micha Hamilton Photography + Design, a boutique creative company providing clients with visual imagery for commercial, non-commercial and private needs. For more information, visit www.michahamiltonphotography.com.

About the Herb & Milly Iris Gallery at SOPAC

The Herb & Milly Iris Gallery brings contemporary art to the community, providing artists opportunities to reach new audiences. The Gallery is designed for moviegoers, theater enthusiasts, art lovers, and all citizens of South Orange alike to have an opportunity to further enrich their cultural lives. The Gallery is the impetus of former SOPAC Board Member Milly Iris who had an extensive art collection, was an art teacher, and the former owner/director of South Orange’s Whichcraft Gallery. Along with her husband, Herb, Milly was a longtime supporter of SOPAC.

About SOPAC

Since 2006, SOPAC has been serving as a premier performing arts center in the region. SOPAC offers innovative artistic and cultural experiences for diverse audiences in an intimate, inviting environment. The multidisciplinary arts center hosts a variety of live performances, community events and education programs for all ages. To further expand its offerings, SOPAC has a partnership with the Juilliard School of Music to present Juilliard @ SOPAC – a series featuring upcoming musicians from the acclaimed conservatory. SOPAC is also a home for Seton Hall University Arts Council’s performances, including Classical Concert Series, Jazz N’ the Hall performances and Seton Hall Theatre productions. SOPAC also presents performances by its theater company in residence, Midtown Direct Rep, and its dance company in residence, Lydia Johnson Dance. For more information, visit www.SOPACnow.org.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

SOMA

Holiday Shopping At Its Best

Holiday gift buying at its best! This Sunday, Sadie's will be hosting local artists with handmade goods and live music for SOMA's enjoyment.

Light refreshments will be provided, and no cover charge! Find unique gifts and support local artists and causes.

Featuring handmade African fabric jewelry and photography by Maria Luis Estrela
Wooden toys that each sale the ...

SOMA and The New Menstruation Equity Campaign

Menstruation, which has long been an awkward topic for most men, and an embarrassing subject for many women, has lately been part of the conversation in SOMA.

Maplewood attorney and author Jennifer Weiss-Wolf's book Periods Gone Public: Taking A Stand For Menstrual Equity was just published.

The South Orange-based non-profit Girls Helping Girls. Period. focuses solely on ...

AtlantiCast: Episode 008

On this week’s AtlantiCast, you’ll learn about a groundbreaking new clinical trial in the fight against pancreatic cancer, meet an award-winning child neurologist at Goryeb Children’s Hospital and hear about the new Scoliosis and Spinal Deformity Center at Atlantic Orthopedic Institute – plus stay tuned at the end to see our debut episode of the AtlantiCast Medical ...

Investors Bank October 2017 Fed Normalization Process

The Federal Reserve has increased interest rates twice this year and could do so again in December.  But the economy is hardly booming along and inflation remains tame.  Are the central bankers crazy?  No!  They simply are trying to add some monetary policy arrows to their largely empty quiver.

The near collapse of the world financial system in 2008, forced the Fed to take ...

Maplewood Police Blotter - Two Bicycle Thefts Reported

December 1, 2017

November 20 - Bicycle Theft; Sometime over the previous three days, a bicycle was removed from an unsecured garage on Girard Pl.

November 21 - Shoplifting; At approximately 11 p.m., a male concealed Red Bull in a bag at 7-Eleven on Irvington Ave and then fled the store when confronted.

November 22 - Bicycle Theft; At approximately 11 a.m., a male walked down the driveway of a home ...

Holiday Celebrations in South Orange and Maplewood

December 12, 2017

SOUTH ORANGE AND MAPLEWOOD, NJ - South Orange and Maplewood have been celebrating the holidays with tree lightings, Santa visits, and more. Here's a recap of last week's SOMA holiday happenings.

POP 'N SHOP GRAND OPENING

At noon on Thursday, Dec. 7, there was a ribbon cutting and opening of the South Orange Village Center Alliance (SOVCA) Pop 'n Shop, which is located ...

Events at Dickens Village in Maplewood Continue this Weekend

MAPLEWOOD, NJ - The "little houses" are back in Ricalton Square in Maplewood Village, with a tree lighting and visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus occurring last Saturday, Dec. 2,  and additional Dickens Village activities planned for this Saturday, Dec. 9, and next Saturday, Dec. 16.

There will be a menorah lighting on Monday, Dec. 18.

There will be Breakfast with ...

Upcoming Events

Wed, December 13, 8:00 AM

St. James's Gate, Maplewood

Maplewood Chamber of Commerce December Networking ...

Business & Finance

Wed, December 13, 11:00 AM

Millburn Free Public Library, Millburn

All Wrapped Up! at the Millburn Library

Home & Garden

Wed, December 13, 12:00 PM

Temple Sharey Tefilo-Israel, South Orange

The Purposes and Rhythms of Jewish Living

Education Religions And Spirituality

Wed, December 13, 6:00 PM

Congregation Ohr Shalom, Summit

Candlelight Vigil Against Gun Violence

Law & Justice Religions And Spirituality

The Mommy's Review - Coco

Corre, no camines (that’s “run, don’t walk!”) to see Coco, the newest animated feature film from Pixar Animation Studios/Disney. This beautiful movie is something that families will cherish seeing together. Like Moana last year, I took my family (ages 7 to 70+) to see Coco over Thanksgiving weekend, and everyone was delighted by the splendor of this wonderful cinematic ...

Essex County Executive Launches 2018 Re-Election Campaign

December 12, 2017

NEWARK, NJ — Amid a sea of supporters from Washington, D.C. to Trenton, from Newark City Hall to the outer reaches of West Essex, Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo formally announced his re-election campaign in Newark on Monday morning at Essex County Veterans Memorial Park.

DiVincenzo, a Newark native who now lives in Roseland, is seeking his fifth ...

Famed Chef Marcus Samuelsson Opens New Restaurant Marcus B&P in Downtown Newark

NEWARK, NJ - Acclaimed celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson knows what he wants and he knows how to get it.

He helped Harlem, long the hub of African-American culture, become happening again with a pair of successful restaurants that are contributing to the revitalization of the famed Manhattan neighborhood.

Samuelsson is rolling the dice by opening a new restaurant in Newark, now undergoing ...

Rutgers to Raise Minimum Wage to $11 an Hour for Student Workers

December 12, 2017

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - Rutgers University will be raising the campus-wide minimum wage to $11 an hour, university president Robert Barchi announced in a campus-wide email on December 11.

The move comes as a partial victory for the local labor rights group, Rutgers United Students Against Sweatshops​ (RUSAS)​, wh​ich ha​s​ been campaigning for a $15 minimum wage.

Right now, the ...

NJ Transit Service to Resume Monday After Friday's Derailment in Union

UNION, NJ – New Jersey Transit reports the Raritan Valley Line trains will resume regular weekday service between Cranford and Newark and High Bridge and Raritan on Monday. Train service was suspended over the weekend after the freight train derailment in Union on Friday afternoon.  

According to their website, NJ Transit says customers may experience possible ...

Beginning Mindfulness Meditation Series at Millburn Library

December 11, 2017

The Millburn Free Public Library is welcoming in 2018 with mindfulness - specifically, a beginning mindfulness meditation series being held in January 2018. The program will run on the following Wednesdays: Jan 10, 17, 21, and 31, at 2:00pm in the auditorium. Please register for this 4 week course, because space is limited.

If you have a belief that your mind is "too busy" ...

Canadian Book Retailer Indigo to Open First U.S. Location at The Mall at Short Hills

Canada’s largest book, gift and specialty toy retailer Indigo Books & Music Inc. will join the lineup at The Mall at Short Hills in summer 2018. The brand’s first U.S. location will be designed around its new ‘cultural department store for booklovers’ concept to offer in-store programming, bestselling books, toys, fashion, home ...

South Orange Joins State Safety Campaign To Increase Pedestrian-Motor Vehicle Safety

“Street Smart NJ” targets speed, distractedness and safety awareness for motorists and pedestrians

The head of the South Orange Police Department Traffic Bureau, Lt. Michael Corrigan, announced that South Orange has launched a Street Smart NJ pedestrian safety education campaign aimed at reducing pedestrian-motor vehicle crashes in New Jersey.

The Street Smart NJ campaign is a ...