The Rider University Art Gallery will present an exhibit of works by Joan B. Needham entitled “Alterations: A Retrospective” October 25 through December 2. The opening reception will be held on Thursday, October 25, from 5 p.m.to 7 p.m. in the gallery. Needham will also present an artist’s talk on Thursday November 8 at 7 p.m., in the Fireside Lounge in the Bart Luedeke Center.
Her work has been exhibited locally and internationally throughout the United States, Japan, China, Spain, England and France. She is the recipient of a New Jersey State Council on the Arts fellowship, and she is part of the New Jersey Public Arts program. In 1981 she introduced papermaking to central New Jersey after studying under Laurence Barker, a master papermaker in Barcelona, Spain. She has been an art educator for more than 36 years with Artworks, the Princeton Art Association, the Trenton After School Program and as a Professor at Mercer County Community College. Most recently Needham was a volunteer teacher in Khayalitsha, South Africa, where she taught the fundamentals of linoleum block printing to a group of women. After developing their skills, the women were given the opportunity to sell their prints and provide an income for their families. Needham has a BFA from Moore College of Art and Design in Philadelphia.
“The process of experimentation has always been important to me. I don’t mind failing and starting over again. In fact, failing is part of the process. My sculptures can exist by themselves and if they fall down, I try to come up with an idea similar to that of an engineer, to fix them. It is important that you interact with my work: the sculptures attract attention and provoke curiosity. I want them to be open and sometimes welcoming, but impenetrable. I envision a relationship between the outside and the inside as it appears to the viewer. You can walk around them and look at them from all sides,” says Needham of her art.
The Rider University Art Gallery is located in the Bart Luedeke Center on Rider University’s campus in Lawrenceville. It is open from Tuesday to Thursday from 11 a.m.to 7 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. Admission is free. For more information please visit www.rider.edu/artgallery or call (609) 895-5588. The gallery will be closed for Thanksgiving November 21 through November 25.
This exhibition is funded in part by a grant from the Mercer County Cultural and Heritage Commission, New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts.