Related Impressions: Rudy Ackerman and Ann Lalik
June 2- July 5, 2016
Gallery 514, Civic Theater, Allentown
Please join us for the reception on Friday June 17, 6-8 p.m.
My work is motivated by my role as a woman in today’s society. I create wearable pieces depicting feminine archetypes. Jewelry as a metaphor exemplifies “those things” we carry around with us and the utilization of modern, traditional, and primitive techniques and materials represents jewelry through the ages. Freedom, which comes from the recognition of our intuition, strength, compassion, history, fertility and our Creator, intrigues me. Women have made great strides and we dare not step down from the pedestal we have earned. This is the challenge. For this exhibition, I focused on the formal, design vocabulary of my father’s work that holds a special place in my heart. This exercise was inspirational for me beyond what I expected. I started by clearly mimicking his work, and each pendent design led me to new concepts… some became distant departures. A wonderful, creative synergy happened because when I started to conceptualize the work, I realized it required translucent, colors and I felt they needed to be large. So I dug out the cast acrylic and electroformed copper pieces I made thirty years ago! I was holding on to them waiting for the time to use them. It seems to make perfect sense to me to be inspired by my father’s designs and to use materials I made such a long time ago, evolving from our shared past.
I always thought my dad and I would have a show together and I am sad he passed away before we did. In 2014 I was privileged to curate his retrospective at the Baum School of Art and in 2015, after he died, I reverently mounted a few of the sculptures he still had on his work bench in his studio. Both of these experiences rekindled a design vocabulary for me that I’m sure was influenced by him. His work in this exhibit represents paintings, prints and sculpture dating from as early as the 1970’s. The work shows diverse techniques yet a cohesive vocabulary that often includes circles, squares, lines and texture to create flowing movement and luscious surfaces. Mine is a new body of work in the form of wearable pendants that were specifically designed with my father’s vocabulary. They are not the usual conceptual “burdens” that tell stories about the stages of a woman’s life or of God’s grace. They simply incorporate circles, squares, texture, squiggly lines and color as an homage to my dad. In order to create the size, color and texture I envisioned, I used cast acrylic and electroformed specimens that I made thirty years ago. They were tucked away all this time, patiently waiting for me to use them for the perfect project. I hope you will be able to join us for this celebration!
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Rudy S. Ackerman was a native of Allentown, PA. He was the Director of Exhibitions and Collections at The Baum School of Art and served as the school’s Executive Director from 1965-2005. He is also known for his leadership of the Moravian College Department of Art in which he served as Chair from 1963-2002. He served on many committees and organizations including the Lehigh Art Alliance and the Allentown Arts Commission since 1994. He received his B.S. in Art Education from Kutztown University, and his Ed. D. from Pennsylvania State University. Dr. Ackerman was a graduate of William Allen High School in Allentown, PA and was a student of The Baum School of Art in his youth where he attended on a scholarship. He received numerous awards and recognitions, including the Individual Artist Award from The Bethlehem Fine Arts Commission, the Outstanding Professional Alumni Award from Kutztown University, the Outstanding Service Award from the Allentown Arts Commission and Who’s Who in American Art.
Ann Lalik is an art administrator, art educator and artist. As Gallery Director and Arts Coordinator at Penn State Lehigh Valley, Lalik instituted the art gallery and art studio facilities on PSLV’s new campus in 2010 and continues to work with the faculty and administration to infuse the arts into the campus life. Prior to her appointment at Penn State, for over 20 years, she served as Gallery Director, Education Director and ultimately Executive Director of the Baum School of Art in Allentown. Lalik developed jewelry and metalsmithing programs at The Baum School and Penn State Lehigh Valley. Her teaching career spans more than three decades. Her studio is located in Allentown. As an artist, she focuses on designing and creating wearable art objects that chronicle her life as a woman in modern society, using precious and non-precious metals, plastics and found objects. Education: M.F.A. and B.F.A, Tyler School of Art, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA.