Earlville Opera House Gallery Presenting Visual Artist Exhibitions
Published: September 21st, 2023

Earlville Opera House Gallery presenting visual artist exhibitions Detail from painting by Patrisha Heaton featured in her Notions of Whimsy exhibit in the Arts Cafe Sept. 23 to Nov. 4. (Submitted Photo)

EARLVILLE – The Earlville Opera House Art Galleries is proud to present the next round of visual artist exhibitions on Saturday, September 23, from 1 to 3 p.m. This series boasts the work of three incredibly talented artists representing diverse and unique forms of artistic media. Gallery openings and visits are always free and open to the public.

Featured in the East Gallery is Kelly Olshan, a New York City-based artist and arts manager, presenting her 3D paintings and art installation “Someplace Else”. Kelly holds a BFA from UNC Asheville and an MA in Arts Administration from Columbia University.

Kelly’s work responds to the idealism and anxiety of endless striving, grappling with a relentless fixation on a better elsewhere. Her 3D paintings and site-responsive installations invite the viewer to navigate an imagined landscape. Abstracted staircases defy spatial logic: rendered impossible to climb, they provide false pathways to an inaccessible place. Disjointed but interconnected, these structures weave through imagined skyscapes, waterscapes, and distant horizons that never arrive. An Artist Talk with Kelly will take place at 1:45pm and you can learn more about Kelly and her work at www.kellyolshan.com.

Fine art photographer JW Johnston’s work is featured in the West Gallery and resists creative limitations. His exhibit “Home Body” examines imprints of time and family on his boyhood home, and himself, in this 120-year-old house in Whitney Point, NY. His work ranges from representational natural landscapes to abstracts of form and texture.  

Johnston left a successful broadcast journalism career of nearly 20 years to become a photographer. He has been an adjunct photography instructor at SUNY Broome Community College, Binghamton, NY, since 2005.

Johnston discussing the content of his show: “This is my home and I wear it like skin. This is where casual conversation provides sustenance, where triumphs are celebrated, failures endured, where my father died despite my attempts to resuscitate him, and where I once shared an observation with my mother before remembering she had died a week earlier. Evidence of my parents’ lives is everywhere: from my father’s fading notes and carpentry calculations on cracked-paint walls to my mother’s now mud-encrusted canning jars on the cellar’s dirt floor. Cleaning up the evidence would erase some of my parents’ story - my story, too. I yearn for the illusion of permanence. I am all too aware that life is ephemeral. We all experience the passage and ravages of time. No matter one’s race, religion, ideology, or status, we all die. People we love die. We mourn, cope, and seek comfort in individual ways. Home Body is one way I cope. I memorialize as caretaker, curator, son.”

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This is Johnston’s newest, most autobiographical project. An artist talk will take place at 2. p.m.
  In addition, Johnston is offering a three-part photography workshop series “Photographing the Everyday” at the Opera House in November, register online or call 315-691-3550. Visit jwjohnston.com for more information on this talented artist.

Walk into our Arts Café and enter a world of creative enticements for the eyes with Patrisha Heaton’s exhibit “Notions of Whimsy”.

A Norwich, NY, resident, Patrisha states “Over the years I worked with charcoal, pastels, acrylics, and darkroom photography. I felt an immediate shift when I bought myself an iPad and an Apple Pencil…I never looked back. I love the immediacy of using digital painting and collage with my images. In a typical piece of my art, I present a character that people can look at and add their own narrative. My sense of humor helps me create the characters as well as the titles. That’s what sparks my delight. I get an impulse to develop an idea and I go for it. All my pieces are an invitation to the viewers to interpret their own story. I hope that the viewer will play and laugh with me as they look at my impulsive experiments.”

We’re excited to explore the depths of Patrisha’s unique and colorful work that transports the viewer only to the limits of their imagination. An Artist Talk will take place at 2:15 p.m. and you can learn more about Patrisha at www.patrishaheatonfineart.studio. 

Earlville Opera House annually presents 12-15 solo exhibitions of regional and national contemporary visual artists in all media. Galleries also feature annual group shows highlighting talents of regional artists as well as an annual exhibition of contemporary and traditional quilt artists. Curators may also propose group exhibitions. If you would like to submit your proposal, please follow the guidelines on our website.

This current round of exhibits is on display until November 4. Gallery hours are Tuesday – Friday 10-4pm and Saturdays 12-3 p.m.

Earlville Opera House Arts Center is located at 18 East Main Street in the charming Village of Earlville, NY.

- Information from the Earlville Opera House