Arts & Entertainment

Behind The Mask: Female Artist's Take on Celebrity, Aging and Identity Showcased at Art Center Beginning Apr. 17

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Judith Henry's Lucille Ball in Williamsburg.
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SUMMIT, NJ - Visitors to the Art Center's Judith Henry exhibit on celebrity, aging and identity will, at first glance, see what appears to be black-and-white portraits of Amy Winehouse, Georgia O’Keefe, Julia Child and Lucille Ball.

When viewed more closely, they will notice that the portraits are actually cut out images being used as a mask by the artist. Posing behind the faces of well-known and accomplished women who have died, Judith Henry uses public locations near her Williamsburg,  Brooklyn home to stage these portraits.
 
Judith Henry: Me as Her, opens April 17 at the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, the work raising questions in the viewer’s mind about the friction between one's interior and exterior selves. The masks raise awareness of the generally shallow understanding of celebrity figures, and how little is really known about them despite their familiarity. 

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The  solo exhibition details inclusion of the artist’s hands holding the masks, reflecting the artist’s aging process, and becomes a meaningful element in each portrait. Her hands allow the viewer to reflect on aging in regards to feminine beauty and one's own mortality.

Henry has generously donated her portrait, Lucille Ball in Williamsburg to the Art Center. It will be up for auction at the Art Center’s April 2  “A Night Under the Stars” gala and art auction, which raises funding for Art Center exhibitions and programs.

An opening reception and art afternoon will be held on April 17, from 2 - 4 p.m. for Judith Henry: Me as Her -- which is on view through June 26 -- as well as other spring shows at the Art Center. The reception is a free event open to all. 

Visit artcenternj.org for a complete list of gallery hours and further information.

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