By Sally Deering
More than 800 artists will exhibit their work in the upcoming 25th annual Jersey City Art & Studio Tour happening Sat & Sun, Oct 3 & 4, from noon to 6 pm. More than a hundred studios, galleries, businesses, public spaces and art pop-ups will be exhibiting paintings, sculpture, mixed-media, and art installations..
The Jersey City Art & Studio Tour (formerly known as the Artists’ Studio Tour) began 25 years ago when a local newspaper joined forces with several Jersey City artists. What started as a tour of 50 or so studios and public art exhibitions with opening night parties of Blimpie sandwiches and jugs of Gallo – has become a huge city-wide event sponsored by the city of Jersey City.
“This year’s tour has grown to include 220 stops throughout Jersey City at galleries, exhibition spaces, and murals, showcasing the vibrant cultural landscape that is Jersey City,” Mayor Steven M. Fulop states on the official JCAST Tour Map. “Jersey City’s cultural scene continues to expand and diversify. Support our local artists by visiting their exhibits and purchasing their work, and engage with your neighbors during one of the biggest annual art events in the region.”
This year, the Jersey City Art & Studio Tour kicks off Fri, Oct. 2nd at 6 pm with an opening reception at the Lackawanna Center on 16th Street near the Holland Tunnel entrance in Jersey City. The Lackawanna Center will also be the site for two group shows: HISTORIC JERSEY CITY curated by Trix Rosen; and THREE SOULS IN THE CITY featuring works by artists Peter S. Bill, Gregory Stone and Fermin Mendoza. There are several other group shows on the tour including one at 150 Bay Street in Jersey City.
If you’re considering driving to Jersey City and parking your car, you might want to reconsider and take public transportation. City Hall in Jersey City has been designated the official take-off for free shuttle buses that will drive tour-goers on three separate routes throughout the city.
A bike tour to view the 50 murals in the Jersey City Mural project will also be leaving from City Hall. Visit the Studio Tour’s website for more information and to download a map of the Studio Tour.
The exhibition features paintings, drawings, watercolors, photographs, historic maps, antique documents, mixed media collage and sculpture by artists Beth Bentley, Peter Delman, Ed Fausty, Sasha Greco & Garry Taylor, E. Jan Kounitz, Beatrice Mady, Andrea Rafael, Trix Rosen, Richard La Rovere, Steve Singer, Julie Sloane, Charlie Steiner and Leona Strassberg Steiner.
“As seen through the eyes of renowned local artists, the exhibition ‘HISTORIC JERSEY CITY’ will feature historic sites, artifacts and relics that exist or have existed in Jersey City,” Rosen says. “Included are a selection of large photographic prints by Ed Fausty from ‘A Fragile Utopia: Studios and Spaces at 111 First Street’ and watercolors by Steve Singer that address issues of gentrification, economic development and artists’ housing.”
Photographs by local teenagers, Brandon Ambrossi, Nathan Balcos, Paloma Edgar and Nilay Vora, who documented the historic Jersey City Reservoir #3 for a digital storytelling workshop taught by Rosen in 2013 will also be on view.
“I put together this exhibition for the JC Art & Studio Tour to show my respect for the folks who cared enough to document and create art about the significance of where they live,” Rosen says. “I also want to reflect on endangered historic sites, the legacy of our builders and our cultural heritage,”
BIKE TO THE ART
Ride your bike to see highlights of the Jersey City Art & Studio Tour on free bike tours by community bike advocacy group Bike JC. All tours will include fly-by viewings of many of Jersey City’s growing collection of street-art murals by artists including Paws, Sue One, Joe Waks and Fermin Mendoza.
On Sat, Oct. 3, there will be one long tour hitting the biggest group shows, and two shorter tours covering the southern and northern halves of the tour. Bike JC’s focus will be on venues that are less accessible to casual strollers and better by bike. Tours will be led by experienced bike marshals. And if you don’t own a bike, Citi Bike JC has bike stations throughout Jersey City which can be rented by the day.
To join the bike tours, just show up on the plaza outside Grove Street PATH station at least 15 minutes before the start of the tour you want to ride: Long Route: 12 noon-5 pm; North Short Route: 1–3:30 pm. South Short Route: 3–5:30 pm. First come, first served—each tour will be capped at 30 riders! All tours will return riders to Grove PATH (or you can break away anywhere along the way). You must bring and wear a helmet.
DOWNLOAD THE MAP AND HAVE FUN
Get your official Jersey City Art & Studio Tour map in the City Hall vestibule at 280 Grove Street or stop by any of the participating venues for a free copy. You can also download a map at www.thejcast.com.
The Jersey City Art & Studio tour has become a beloved citywide tradition and a great way for local residents and visitors to support Hudson’s art community
For more info
Sat & Sun, Oct. 3 & 4, 12 noon – 6 pm
Jersey City Art & Studio Tour
City of Jersey City
Office of Cultural Affairs
280 Grove Street, JC