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Downtown Summit Art Festival: Arts + Cars

Do you have art or crafts you want to show and sell? The Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, Summit Downtown, and Summit PAL are thrilled to host an outdoor art festival in beautiful downtown Summit! Arts + Cars will take place on Sunday, September 16, 2018, from 10 AM–4 PM (rain or shine) and will work alongside local businesses and the Summit Farmer’s Market. Additionally, the event will include a car show and a stage with musical performances all day long in order to attract large audiences to look at and purchase your work!

Arts + Cars is a juried arts and crafts festival. Download the application here. Apply for your space by completing and mailing in the linked form or handing it in at the Art Center. Deadline for entry is August 15, but those entering by June 15 will be eligible for an early bird discount.


Complete application must be submitted with all materials together. The committee will not consider incomplete applications.

The complete application can be submitted via email, regular mail, or in person at the Art Center. The following is required:

  • 5 images of representative artwork/crafts that will be on display in the booth (Double and Triple booth applicants may send up to 9 images showing work that represents each artist). These images can be sent in print out if mailing in OR in JPEG or PDF format if submitting via email. The images should be indicative of what will be on display in the booth and not more than 2 years old. Your name & images may be used in advertising.
  • Personal artist bio, printed out if mailing in OR in pdf format if submitting via email.
  • A completed Hold Harmless Agreement (required by the City of Summit)
  • An application.
  • Credit card information or, if mailing application, the option of two checks payable to “Visual Arts Center of New Jersey” with “art fair” notated on the memo line:
  1. $25 Application Fee – non-refundable & deposited on receipt.
  2. Booth Fee –deposited when the artist has been selected to exhibit (details included in the application form). Booth fee discount of $25 if postmarked or received by June 15. If you are not selected, the booth fee check will be returned to you or your credit card will not be charged.

Artists will be notified by email by August 30 of their acceptance into Arts + Cars.

Please send questions/inquiries to No phone calls

Freewheeling: Color in the Digital Age

The Visual Arts Center of New Jersey will offer a Teacher’s symposium on Thursday, May 10, and Friday, May 11, from 9 AM–3 PM. Teacher’s symposia offer unique professional development opportunities for art educators to come together and learn new creative skills to bring back to their classroom. This event, Freewheeling: Color in the Digital Age, will be led by contemporary artist Maureen McQuillan and includes a presentation by the artist, hands-on artmaking workshop, and gallery exercises that explore ways to view and interpret contemporary art. Attendees will receive five professional development hours upon completion, as well as lesson plans to take home to use in their classrooms.

“Since the dawn of the computer age, color has increasingly become the result of disembodied digital production,” said Ms. McQuillan. “Rather than sunlight reflecting off of an object, we see color disconnected from the world—synthetic, pre-programmed light emanating from a screen. As a result, the color wheel, based on 19th-century (and earlier) conceptions of color does not have the same relevance for artists. Even studying the different wavelengths and frequencies of color does not take into account how we all perceive color differently. In this workshop, we will discuss how our own relationships to color have changed since the dawn of the digital age, and how artists can create their own system of color investigation—one that recognizes and embraces its own failures and limitations.”

Please note: Teachers who require their schools to be invoiced for this program should contact Sarah Walko at 908.273.9121, ext. 213 or at directly to register.


Color & Consciousness: A Conversation with Bevil Conway

Neuroscientist Bevil Conway will use the Art Center’s current color-themed exhibitions as a backdrop to facilitate an engaging discussion on the science of visual perception on Saturday, April 21, from 3–5 PM. Mr. Conway specializes on this topic in his scientific study and often explores the limitations of the visual system in his own artwork. Much of Mr. Conway’s research is guided by the underlying thought that visual art can be used to reveal insights about how visual information is processed. His interest in the dovetailing of science and art has spawned interdisciplinary study and the creation of a course entitled Vision and Art: Physics, Physiology, Perception, and Practice, which he has taught at Wellesley College in Massachusetts.

Mr. Conway has focused his research on the neural machinery behind color because he thinks it’s a powerful system and one that has value for designers and artists,” said Sarah Walko, Director of Programs at the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey. “This topic is one that all of the artists in the current exhibition Radiant Energy are exploring. Mr. Conway thinks insights into color processing may ultimately shed light on fundamental questions about human cognition. Because he understands the science behind how the brain processes color, t will be fascinating to hear him speak on that within the context of this exhibition.”

This event is free to the public and open to all ages.

Artist Talk: March 25

The Visual Arts Center of New Jersey’s current exhibition, Radiant Energy, showcases the work of Gabriele Evertz, Robert Swain, and Sanford Wurmfeld, artists who all create work that challenges viewers to see color differently. On Sunday, March 25, from 3–5 PM these artists will be joined by artist, curator, and gallery director Matthew Deleget for a conversation on their work and their relationship to color.  All three exhibiting artists are longtime members of the renowned “Hunter Color School,” a group of painters who taught (or continue to teach) at New York’s Hunter College. While they all utilize different geometric elements (squares, rectangles, stripes or bands, grids, and lines) they all explore how the interaction of color creates physical and emotional responses in the viewer. This event is free and open to all ages.

Artist Bios:
Gabriele Evertz is a German-born, American artist who lives and works in Brooklyn. She holds an MFA in painting and a BA in art history, from Hunter College, in New York. Since 1990, Evertz has exhibited her work in solo and group exhibitions internationally and throughout the United States. In 2017, her work was featured at 499 Park Avenue / The Lobby Gallery in Manhattan and at MINUS SPACE in Brooklyn. Evertz’s paintings are included in many public and private collections worldwide. She has an extensive bibliography as her work has been reviewed in many prominent publications. In addition to her painting practice, Evertz is a Professor of Art in the Department of Art and Art History at Hunter College in New York

Robert Swain is one of the most influential artists of his generation. He was born in Austin, Texas, in 1940, and grew up in Arlington, Virginia. In 1966, Swain began his first color-based work followed a year later by his first work utilizing the grid. He participated in his first group exhibition, Light and Line, organized by John Baldwin at the legendary Park Place Gallery in New York City in 1967. That same year he met sculptor Tony Smith who became his close friend and mentor for many years. In 1969, Swain began to develop his own color system, a project that continues until today. Swain has exhibited his work nationally and internationally for more than 40 years. His paintings have been including in countless landmark exhibitions. In addition to his artistic work, Swain taught in the Department of Art & Art History at Hunter College from 1968-2014, where he educated and mentored countless generations of artists.

Sanford Wurmfeld has exhibited his work worldwide in solo and group exhibitions since the late 1960s. In 1968 Wurmfeld was the youngest artist included in the landmark exhibition Art of the Real curated by Eugene Goossen at the Museum of Modern Art, New York.  Wurmfeld has lectured and written extensively on the history of color, painting, and abstraction. He has received awards from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, City University of New York, and Dartmouth College. Wurmfeld’s work is included in collections worldwide. In addition to his artistic work, Wurmfeld taught in the Department of Art at Hunter College from 1967-2012, where he educated and mentored countless generations of artists.

In addition to being the Director of MINUS SPACE, Matthew Deleget is also currently an Artist Consultant with the Creative Capital Foundation’s Professional Development Program. He is a member of American Abstract Artists, the Marie Walsh Sharpe Art Foundation’s Artist Advisory Committee, and the board of The Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts. From 1998-2009, Matthew worked at the New York Foundation for the Arts where he founded and directed all of the organization’s information programs and initiatives for and about artists working in all disciplines. Deleget is also an artist himself and exhibits his own work extensively in the US and internationally.


Concert in the Gallery

Above Photo by Jonathan Beckley (

Concert in the Gallery: Mary Bichner and Molly Zenobia

In conjunction with our exhibition Radiant Energy, the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey is thrilled to host composers and performers Mary Bichner and Molly Zenobia for an evening of music in the gallery on Saturday, March 10, from 6–8 PM. Radiant Energy focuses on visual artists who’s work centers around color and color theory. Both performers have synesthesia, a neurological condition that causes them to “see” splashes of specific colors when they hear their corresponding pitches sounded and this is how they compose their music! Tickets for the event are $10 and are available for purchase here.

Mary Bichner is an orchestral classical-meets-pop composer who also has perfect pitch, the ability to recognize notes and chords by name upon hearing them played. She was once invited to Harvard University’s prestigious neuroscience lab to be studied for her brain’s unusual wiring, Mary creates richly-colored compositions that delight classical enthusiasts and indie-pop rockers alike.

In the autumn of 2017, Mary collaborated with Boston’s Museum of Science for the premiere of “Synesthesia Suite: Constellations”, a new collection of chamber works inspired by the New England night sky in spring. The suite was performed live in concert by Mary Bichner and Planetary Quartet during two sold-out concerts at the Charles Hayden Planetarium. The performances were accompanied by customized synesthesia-inspired dome visuals created by the museum’s award-winning planetarium team, giving audience members the unique opportunity to “hear” color and “see” sound just as Mary does when she listens to music.

Molly Zenobia’s music has been described as soulful, visceral, and vast. Molly has opened for the Foo Fighters, and played on the same bill with Hans-Joachim Roedelius, Rachel Sage, Edie Carey, Mila Drumke and the Dresden Dolls as well as at numerous festivals around the country. She is also currently collaborating with Roedelius on an album as well as working on her fourth album with one of the founding members of the Counting Crows, Matt Malley.

Regardless of whether she is playing a large rock club, intimate piano bar, collaborating on experimental improvisations, or scoring a film, Molly’s music will leave you sated. “We have so much input these days that we forget that simple is powerful. I may have a lot of production or no production on my albums, but what emerges is always one message, raw, simple, and yours.”

The concert will take place on Saturday, March 10, from 6–8 PM, Tickets are $10 per person and can be bought here or at the door. Click here for purchase!