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TRANSFORMATIONS, an exhibit of work by six artists, five from the Trenton area and one from the Pennsylvania coal regions, focuses on the beauty within post-industrial spaces, and how the arts can help reinvigorate a community and its economy.  It looks through the lens of visual art at how post-industrial places like Trenton, just like coal country, can find beauty and dignity in these spaces, conjuring the humanity of the workers and families who animated these buildings and communities long ago, and how artists of all genres, can reanimate these communities and spaces in the present.  Curated by ArtWorks, Trenton's Visual Arts Center.

Artists
Suzanne Dinger
Kate Graves
CJ Harker
Bob McCormick
C.a. Shofed
Habiyb Shu’Aib

About Transformations

"What's next?"  This is the question that many ask, whether it’s post-industrial coal country in Pennsylvania, or post-industrial cities like Trenton, N.J.  What happens to the empty shells of industrial buildings looming over the landscape, like ancient pantheons of a forgotten time.  What happens to the people, who for generations were employed by now-gone industries?  What happens to a city when the engines of commerce and prosperity have been pulled out from underneath it?

All across this nation, cities and towns have seen the decimation of entire communities in the post-industrial era.  Whole communities, centered around industry, collapse when their livelihoods disappear.  The people of those communities have two choices:  they can pack up and leave, leaving behind everything they have ever known, in search of gainful employment;  or they can invest in building their community back through other means, building a new industrial infrastructure through industries such as the arts and technology.

The arts have always been a way to invigorate and revitalize communities that have been hit with hard times.  Whether it’s a small rural town or a big city, the arts have been a catalyst to bring those communities back from the brink.  Trenton, rich in culture due to its diversity and history, can be one of those cities, with its immense structures of years gone by. These cathedral-like structures can be and are being repurposed, reconditioned and reignited through the arts.  Events like Westminster College’s Transforming Space Project’s performance of Anthracite Fields, or Artworks’ annual Art All Night, find beauty in these relics and reanimate these buildings with the energy that only the arts can provide.      

Image: "Art Makes Trenton," photograph by C.a. Shofed.

Artists

Suzanne Dinger
Kate Graves
CJ Harker
Bob McCormick
C.a. Shofed
Habiyb Shu’Aib

Ticket Information 

Free Admission
Does not include admission to the Anthracite Fields performance. To order concert tickets, call 609-921-2663 or order online.

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