Mixed Media to the Max: Middlesex County College to Host “Reanimator” Art Exhibit

EDISON — Three artists with wildly diverse skills will be featured at the Studio Theater Gallery at Middlesex County College from Nov. 15 through Dec. 24. The gallery is open 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays. A reception for the artists, which is open to the public, will be held Nov. 15 from 5-7 p.m.

“This is a multimedia exhibition of puppets, video and animatronic sculpture,” said Nadine Heller, chair of the Department of Visual, Performing and Media Arts and the curator of the exhibit. “The theme of the exhibit is the artists are taking things that are not living and are animating them.”

Kevin Augustine is the puppeteer, Alessandro Bavari is a multidisciplinary artist who will present his video at this event, and Scott Pellnat is a sculptor.

Augustine is the director and founder of Lone Wolf Tribe Puppet Theatre, which creates original brutally poetic contemporary narratives. The puppets, foam rubber creations, are animated by Augustine in performances held nationally and internationally. He has held residencies and showings at PS 122, HERE Arts Center, the Brooklyn Arts Exchange, and the MacDowell Colony, among others. He is the recipient of a number of Fringe Festival awards for his work. His piece The Bride was twice listed as one of the best shows of 2008 by Time Out NY. Now in its 12th season, Lone Wolf  is developing a three-installment project, The Hobo Grunt Cycle, exploring tramp clowns, post traumatic stress disorder, and illegal dog fighting.

Bavari is a multidisciplinary artist living and working in Italy.  His video, “Metachaos,” won eight international film awards for best animated short in 2011. Born outside of Rome to an Italo-French family, he attended the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome where he studied scenography, photography, art history and visual arts.

Pellnat is a sculptor and installation artist. His work, Low Tide, or the Dance of the Seven Veils, features an automaton and mechanized boats arranged in a ring cycle and was recently at view in Catagenesis, an international exhibition of sculptors held in Philadelphia at the Globe Dye Works. This exhibition includes excerpts from that installation. He works with mixed media to create elaborate visionary installations.  His sculpture, while often grim, invites the viewer into a pact of shared accountability. The often mundane utilitarian forms, usually broken in some way, are familiar and almost comforting. Many of these objects move and it is this motion that forces the viewer’s complicity as it is human behavior that seems mirrored in the dance of objects.

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