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Housatonic Museum of Art Reopens With Big Art Bash 2021

BRIDGEPORT, CT (September 9, 2021) On Thursday, September 2, the Housatonic Museum of Art (HMA) officially reopened its doors with a celebration of its grand collective exhibition: Big Art Bash 2021. The show, which is located in Lafayette Hall on the Housatonic Community College campus, features four highly diverse individual exhibitions that are sure to affect even the most discerning art enthusiasts.

“The range of topics that these four exhibits demonstrate is far-reaching, however they all examine key aspects of human existence: connection, societal structures, despair, and hope. Whether you’re moved by Jon Schueler’s ability to find expression to ease PTSD, or offended by the effect patriarchal structures have had on women, this collective assembly of work provokes strong emotion,” said Robbin Zella, Director of the Housatonic Museum of Art.

A significant exhibition by Jon Shueler entitled ‘Lost Man Blues: Jon Schueler – Art and War’ features a selection of war-themed paintings that simultaneously reflect the horrors he witnessed as a B-17 navigator and the beauty of nature he beheld while flying. Writings by the esteemed, prolific American abstract expressionist accompany the works, providing insight into his traumatic experiences. Showcased in the museum’s Burt Chernow Galleries, a gallery talk with Marissa Roth, the exhibition curator, will take place virtually on Thursday, October 7th at 6pm. The exhibit will be on view through October 8, 2021.

Floating above the Burt Chernow Galleries, sits a new, dynamic interlacing sculpture by South Korean artist, Jongil Ma. The commissioned work, entitled ‘Be There When You Return’, was funded by Elizabeth Fray, the Werth Family Foundation and HCC. An enormous, intricate arrangement of stained wood, the piece creates a three-dimensional drawing in space, and offers a lesson in balance and flow. The work refers to Bridgeport’s journey and hopeful return to residents’ pride and passion for local architecture, and welcomes students and the community back on campus as a permanent installation.

A mini-solo exhibition features a series offering a meditation on modern physics, space, human relationships and music by Taiwanese artist and Westport resident, Erik Chiang. The show, entitled ‘Are We Born Connected’, examines the meaning of our existence and the importance of connection to one another. The show, which is part of the college’s upcoming STEAMFest celebration, features cellos floating in space, which represent human voice and demonstrate the value of interaction to make music. The exhibition will be on view in the Gallery of the Performing Arts Center through May 18, 2022.

A selection of paintings, photographs and sculpture comprise an exhibition that explores the ways in which male dominance has established a stronghold in familial, social, legal, political, religious and economic systems. The show, entitled ‘Of Woman Born’, examines patriarchal structures that have dominated, oppressed and exploited women throughout the ages. Work is featured by Fairfield County artists from Ridgefield, Westport, and Fairfield as well as from artists throughout the region. This exhibit, located on the second floor of the atrium in Lafayette Hall, will remain on view until June 30, 2022.

Before visiting, please check for COVID-19 updates regarding campus accessibility. An appointment to visit the museum may be necessary, and visitors must be prepared to comply with social distancing rules and wear protective face masks. For additional information please call 203-332-5052.

Housatonic Museum of Art is home to one of the premier college art collections in the country, spanning the history of art from the ancient to the contemporary, and is on continuous display throughout the 300,000 square foot facility. The museum also hosts changing exhibitions in the Burt Chernow Galleries, and engaging lectures, workshops, films, special events and programs throughout the year, both in person and online. Visit to learn more.

A crowd of art enthusiasts attended the reopening of the Housatonic Museum of Art and its newest collective exhibition: Big Art Bash 2021.

Photo credit: Laura Roberts

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