The Diversity Council of Community College of Philadelphia proudly presents "Women of Color," an enlightening exhibit depicting the artwork of four women from different cultural backgrounds and life experiences. The exhibit, which opens on Tuesday, June 1, 2004, will be on display in the College's Rotunda Gallery located in the Mint Building, 17th and Spring Garden Streets. The exhibition will feature the work of Sheena Garcia, Marta Sanchez, Pauline Houston McCall and Betsy Casanas. Although each of these women comes from diverse cultural backgrounds their work delivers a fundamental message speaks to all women. Each of the four has overcome adversity and feels a strong sense of obligation to encourage others through their art.
The exhibition aims to build a more inclusive campus community which understands, respects and embraces the value of diversity among the students, faculty and staff.
A brief biographical profile on each artist is included.
WHAT: Women of Color Exhibition
WHERE: Community College of Philadelphia's Rotunda Gallery Mint Building
17th and Spring Garden Streets
WHEN: June 1 - June 30, 2004
Opening Reception: June 1, 2:30 p.m.
Sheena Garcia is a Philadelphia born painter whose work pays tribute to the culture of women in our society. The joys, challenges and disappointments she has encountered as a woman of color has been the inspiration for her paintings. She grew up in the Northern Liberties section of the city and studied art and culture at the Bodine High School for International Affairs, and then majored in painting and art therapy at University of the Arts and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.
Her desire to expand her knowledge about paint and artmaking took her Europe and North Africa for further study in these respective areas. While studying abroad, Ms. Garcia discovered her form of expression and nurtured her gift. Sheena has had the opportunity to be associated with such celebrated artists as sculptor, Dr. Selma Burke of the Harlem Renaissance and with acclaimed Philadelphia artists Charles Searles, Elizabeth Osbourne and Christine Lafuente. Ms. Garcia has had the honor of having her work regularly exhibited at Gallery Art 54 in the renowned Soho District in New York City. Her work has been extensively reviewed by New York City's Gallery Guide, the Philadelphia Inquirer and the Philadelphia Daily News.
In the words of Ms. Sanchez, "My work is an ongoing narrative recording the existence of my family and friends. I strive to relate the hope, prayers and humanity of the common man."
Born and raised in San Antonio, Texas, painter Marta Sanchez is inspired by traditional Mexican folk art. She earned a BFA from the University of Texas at Austin and an MFA from Temple University's Tyler School of Art. Sanchez is widely known for her retablo paintings, an offspring of traditional Mexican prayer paintings. These metal masterpieces capture and convey the heartfelt dreams and wishes of her subjects as if the artists were lighting a candle in prayer for her subject.
Ms. Sanchez holds Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Texas at Austin and a Master of Fine Arts degree from Temple University's Tyler School of Art. She currently teaches at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Temple's Tyler School of Art and the Springside School.
Her work in housed in collections at the Fine Arts Museum of St. Petersburg, Fla., the State Museum of Pennsylvania and the Free Library of Philadelphia. Several pieces are currently part of a touring exhibition entitled, "Chicano Visions: American Painters on the Verge." Her public art commissions can be seen in the Philadelphia area at Simons Recreation Center and The Children's Hospital in Montgomery, Pennsylvania.
PAULINE HOUSTON MCCALL:
The source of Pauline's imagery stems from the voices of her ancestry - an African American of German, Spanish and Cherokee descent. Her art has been strongly influenced by historic struggles of her heritage. McCall holds a BFA from Moore College of Art and has shown her work in the Philadelphia area at Hopkins House Gallery, October Gallery, Walt Whitman Gallery, New Jersey State Aquarium and the Painted Bride Art Center. She is very active in youth outreach programs in New Jersey and Pennsylvania schools.
Casanas was born and raised in North Philadelphia and earned her BFA from Moore College of Art and Design. She began teaching at Taller Puertorriqueno since age 19, and has continued to teach a variety of workshops at the Village of Arts and Humanities, Moore College of Art and Design, Thomas Eakins House, and Kensington Branch Library.
She has designed over 30 public mural and mosaics since 1995 in neighborhoods throughout Philadelphia, Elkins Park, Chester, Manayunk, Camden and Cherry Hill. She currently teaches design at The Charter Higher School for Architecture and Design. She currently is showing at Moore College of Art and Design.