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J Patio Gallery highlights artwork of The J members

The JCC is honoring the artistic skill of its members with a new Patio Gallery exhibit called “Our Community – Artistry of our Members.” It features Ron Anderson, Gweneth Dunleavey and Gibbs Rounsavall, all members of The J and all were showcased in last year’s Mazin Annual Art Exhibition. Their artwork ranges from beautiful textile art, to hyper realistic acrylic paintings and intricate, almost hypnotic designs. The exhibit is a fascinating look at the art work and ingenuity of our community.

Ron Anderson and his wife have been members of the JCC since the 1970s. Anderson said “JCC has helped us raise our families. We’ve enjoyed just about every aspect of The J, including the arts. When my daughter was 5, I took her on our first “date” – dinner and a play at CenterStage. We came to JCC to see “Bernie’s Bar Mitzvah” and had a ball. The Jewish Community Center holds many wonderful memories for my whole family.” Anderson received a BA in Fine Arts at Indiana University Southeast in 1979 and has continued painting ever since. Anderson produces realistic images because he says, “I do not know how to do anything else.” Anderson has branched out, producing more abstract pieces and enjoys the challenge, but continues to work realistically to produce works that are new and fresh, and says “As long as I can lift a brush, I will keep trying.”

Gweneth Dunleavy is a fiber artist, a juried member of the Louisville Artisan’s Guild and is currently serving as chair of the executive committee of LAFTA (Louisville Area Fiber and Textile Artists). After a first career in teaching and advising college students, she returned to school to study art and received an M.A. in Fine Arts from the University of Louisville in 2011. With dual interests in screen printing and papermaking, she designs and produces most of the patterned and textured papers she uses in her collaged pieces. Much of Dunleavy’s work explores the visual play and optical illusions underlying many traditional quilt block designs by juxtaposing contradictory patterns and materials. “As a committed paper maker, I often pair papers I’ve made from a variety of fibers with paper that I’ve screen printed with acrylic inks, a challenging combination because the color intensity and surface sheen of the two materials is markedly different.” Dunleavy has been experimenting with improvisational methods of printing and rust-dyeing to take advantage of random and irreproducible visual effects. The tension between what can be controlled and what cannot, between order and chaos, is a theme underlying all her work.

Gibbs Hanson Rounsavall was named after his maternal grandmother, Julia Gibbs, the first artist he knew. Both his mother and grandmother are considered by today’s standards as “outsider artists.” Being selftaught artists, they fostered in him both a strong sense of creative discipline as well a comprehensive definition of aestheticism. Rounsavall loved to draw since he was in first grade and went on to graduate with a degree in illustration from Washington University. He compares his studio practice to that of a scientific exploration embracing the thrill of discovery. The focus of his study has primarily been on relationships between shape and color. Color has such strong associative powers that it can transport us through time eliciting memories while simultaneously suspending the perception of reality. Although they may appear computer generated, all work is hand painted and drawn, with a closer look revealing faltering lines and imperfections. Rounsavall points out, “this is a reflection of my own capacity for self-awareness in the moment where an impulse to make a specific kind of mark reveals itself. Most importantly, I want my work to provide a positive experience for my audience and a sense of beauty that can enrich their lives by raising an awareness and appreciation for the present moment”.

“Our Community- Artistry of our Members” will be on display through July 14 in the J Patio Gallery. All pieces in this show are for sale with a portion of the proceeds helping to continue the cultural arts programs at the JCC. If you are interested in the current exhibit please contact Marianne Zickuhr, J Arts & Ideas Program and Outreach Manager, at 502-238-2765 or mzickuhr@jewishlouisville.org.

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