KCAC Names Two New Members to its Board of Directors

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On January 1, 2019, the Board of Directors of the Kent County Arts Council (KCAC) unanimously approved two new members; Myra Bulter, Director, Kent County Parks & Recreation; and Mark Christopher Hampton, Executive Vice President for Strategies and Operations at Washington College.

“I’m thrilled to have Myra and Mark join the KCAC board,” said Executive Director John Schratwieser. “Both bring extraordinary talents to our organization and help us to increase the reach and footprint of the KCAC through Kent County and across the Washington College Campus; furthering our ability to serve all residents of Kent County.”

Myra Butler has worked for Kent County in a variety of positions since 1992.  She is currently the Vice Chair of the Kent County Local Management Board.  She has also served on the boards of the University of Maryland Medical System, Shore Regional Health, Chester River Health Foundation, Compass Regional Hospice, and the Maryland Association of Recreation and Parks.

Myra Bulter and Mark Hampton

A resident of Chestertown, Butler is also a singer, dancer and community volunteer. She also enjoys spending time with her family and friends, including her “fur baby” Napoleon Charlie, a Shih Tzu. Bulter says she is “elated” to serve on KCAC Board and support its efforts. “I look forward to not only gaining a better understanding for the arts and the artistic process, but to also be a part of the organization’s creative process,” she stated. “I’m equally excited about the opportunity to develop what I hope will become a long-lasting partnership between the Arts Council and the Department of Parks and Recreation.”

Mark Hampton recently returned to Washington College where he had served as Vice President for Finance and Administration from 2014 – 2016. In his new role as Executive Vice President for Strategy and Operations, he will develop the overall strategic direction of the College, while overseeing financial operations, information technology, facilities, capital projects, human resources, communications and marketing, and business operations.

An avid runner (having completed 21 marathons and 3 ultra-marathons, Hampton holds of Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Leadership and Policy, a Masters of Statistics in Mathematics, and a Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics all from the University of Utah. He and his husband, Jay Alexander, reside in Chestertown with their two Labrador retrievers, Stella and Louie.

“I am honored to be joining the Board of the Kent County Arts Council. The arts are a big part of what makes Kent County special,” he said, “and an even bigger part of what will help the County continue to thrive in the future. I am absolutely excited to be able to work with the rest of the Board and with John to support the arts in our community and to develop and execute on a vision that will see the arts improve the lives of all Kent County residents.”

The Kent County Arts Council seeks to invest in, infuse, and inspire artists and arts organizations throughout Kent County in an effort to expand access to the arts for all residents and visitors.

Call for Artists for Rock Hall Mural Project

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The Main Street Rock Hall Steering Committee is seeking experienced, qualified mural artists to develop and implement a public art project in Rock Hall, MD.  The purpose of the project is to re-envision, re-design and recreate three deteriorating murals in downtown Rock Hall while eliciting input and participation from both local school children and community members. Themes for the murals will be: 1) the lives and traditions of Chesapeake Bay watermen, 2) the lives and traditions of Eastern Shore farmers, and 3) the bountiful natural resources of the Chesapeake Bay, from plants to fish to crustaceans.

Applications are due no later than midnight Friday, February 1, 2019.  A committee of judges selected by Main Street Rock Hall will evaluate all submissions and choose the winning artist(s).  The project will begin in February, with a completion date of June 7, 2019  for final execution of mural painting.

Interested applicants may apply on-line via www.kentcountyartscouncil.orgPlease be sure to read all guidelines before applying.  If  unable to apply on-line, please contact Laurie Walters at 443-465-0681 for additional information.

The Main Street Rock Hall Steering Committee thanks the following patrons and supporters of “The Murals of Rock Hall”: Bayside Foods (Debbie, Jeff and Andrew Carroll), Dowlings’s Painting (Sam Dowling), Java Rock (Joanne and Jim Rich), Kent County Arts Council, The Mainstay, The Maryland Dept. of Housing and Community Development, The Maryland State Arts Council and Sherwin Williams (Greg Krafchik).

If you would like to add your support to this exciting community project, please contact Laurie Walters at lewalte1@yahoo.com or 443-465-0681.

Kent County Arts Council Celebrates MIGRATION

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The Kent County Arts Council (KCAC) is producing a monumental project nearly a year in the making, inspired by the famous Great Migration Series, painted by Harlem Renaissance artist Jacob Lawrence.  The Series includes 60 panels of scenes from the Great Migration of African Americans from the “Jim Crow” South to the Industrial North.  The Lawrence works hang in both the Philips Collection in Washington DC (odd numbers Panels 1- 59) and at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City (even numbered panels 2-60).

The project idea came when KCAC Director John Schratwieser talked with friend and colleague Norman Allen (Playwright, The Christmas Foundling, Produced at the Prince Theater in 2008.). Mr. Allen was selected by Jacqueline E. Lawton, Professor of Theater at University of North Carolina Chapel Hill to join her as one of five playwrights commissioned by the Philips Collection to create five new ten-minute plays, each based on one of the Lawrence panels.  Ms. Lawton immediately agreed to work with the KCAC to produce the plays right here in Kent County.  The plays will be presented as rehearsed readings.  They have been cast locally and will be directed by Michele Volansky, Chair, Department of Theater and Dance at Washington College.  The playwrights, from across the country, are Norman Allen, Tearrance Arvelle Chisholm, Annalisa Diaz, Jacqueline E. Lawton, and Laura Shamas.

On November 1 – 4 at the Garfield Center for the Arts, the plays will be featured as act two of a three-part evening.  The evening begins with Act 1 at 6 p.m. at Chestertown RiverArts where the student artwork, based on their trip to the Phillips Collection, will be on display.  Act 2 begins at 7 p..m. at the Garfield.  After a short intermission, Act 3 is a scaled version of the locally written and produced Migration story – Red Devil Moon, by Robert Earl Price and Pam Ortiz, featuring the Pam Ortiz Band and Sombarkin.  What an evening it will be!  This three-part program will occur November 1, 2 and 3 beginning at 6 p.m. at RiverArts and 7 p.m. at the Garfield, and again on Sunday, November 4 at 2 p.m. at RiverArts and 3 p.m. at the Garfield.  Sunday’s performance will be followed by a “talk-back” featuring the Director, the five Playwrights, and the creators of Red Devil Moon.

Photo: Guest Artist Producer, Jacqueline Lawton (Top Left), Director Michele Volansky (Top Right) and Playwrights, L-R, Annalisa Dias, Laura Shamas, Norman Allen, Tearrance Arvelle, Chisholm.

On September 25, the KCAC took nearly 40 students from Kent County High School, and all five of the Kent County Public Schools visual art teachers to the Philips Collection in DC for a tour of the museum, with a specific focus of the Migration Series panels, and they all had a chance to meet with Ms. Lawton and hear about her process for creating this celebration of art through theater.

On October 25, the Garfield will present a free daytime production of Red Devil Moon to a theatre full of students from all over Kent County including Kent County Middle and High Schools, Radcliffe Creek School and the Kent School.

The Kent County Arts Council is pleased to work so closely with the Kent County Public Schools and is also very grateful for this opportunity to partner directly with RiverArts and the Garfield. This project would not have been possible without the support of the Maryland State Arts Council, The Indian Point Foundation and the Hedgelawn Foundation.

Performances are:

Thursday November 1, 6 p.m. at RiverArts, 7 p.m. at Garfield
Friday November 2, 6 p.m. at RiverArts, 7 p.m. at Garfield
Saturday November 3, 6 p.m. at RiverArts, 7 p.m. at Garfield
Sunday November 4, 2 p.m. at RiverArts, 7 p.m. at Garfield

Tickets are $10 for adults. Free (with reservation required) for Students.
Call The Garfield at 410-810-2060 or visit www.GarfieldCenter.org

TICKETS also at EVENTBRITE:  https://www.eventbrite.com/e/migration-an-exploration-in-art-words-and-music-inspired-by-jacob-lawrence-tickets-51260237751

For more information contact John Schratwieser, Director, Kent County Arts Council at 410-778-3700 or john@kentcountyartscouncil.org. For tickets visit our website or www.garfieldcenter.org

KCAC Increases Grants for Nonprofit Arts Organizations by 36%

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The Kent County Arts Council is awarding $41,900 in General Operating grants for Fiscal Year 2019, a 36 percent increase over last year.

“This is great news for the arts in Kent County,” said Clarke Bjorke, President of the Board of KCAC. “We are awarding more funding support and asking our grantee organizations to use these funds to serve more of the residents of Kent County – everybody wins!”

The applications were reviewed, and awards approved, by a committee of five sitting KCAC Board Members. This year’s recipients are:

Chestertown RiverArts – $10,000
Garfield Center for the Arts – $9,500
The Mainstay – $9,000
National Music Festival – $6,250
Chester River Chorale – $2,900
Kent County Community Marching Band – $1,500
Chester River Youth Chorale – $1,000
Eastern Shore Wind Ensemble – Pending

Each year the KCAC invests public funds, as well as time and other resources to help strengthen the county’s nonprofit arts organizations, as part of its mission to “Invest, Infuse, and Inspire.” In making these grant awards, the Arts Council is moving forward with both a new formula for funding, and new requirements for community service, diversity, and outreach.

“The money we award through grants is public money that comes directly from the Maryland State Arts Council, which is funded by an Appropriation from the Governor and Maryland General Assembly,” said John Schratwieser, Director of the Kent County Arts Council. KCAC also receives public funding from the Kent County Commissioners.

“As taxpayer dollars, these funds are designed be used to serve and benefit the residents of Kent County. Through funding, professional development and capacity-building opportunities, the KCAC seeks to help our grantees grow in their service to our residents,” he added.

For FY19, the Board approved a new policy which caps any single General Operating grant to the lesser of 50 percent of a grantee’s comparable grant from the Maryland State Arts Council, or $10,000 (MSAC grants are based on organizational budgets – and the Kent County Arts Council follows this policy.). This will enable the KCAC’s dollars to fund more organizations and reach more residents across Kent County.

The Kent County Arts Council also offers Project Grants. For FY19, the Project Grant category funds will increase by 25 percent over FY18. These grants are for community groups and other nonprofits who are not direct arts providers but offer arts-related projects or programs. This category has an open-ended deadline as funds are available. To date, nearly $4,000 has been awarded in this category.

Information about the KCAC’s grants and grant applications is online at www.kentcountyartscouncil.org or by calling 410.778.3700.

The Kent County Arts Council Presents “The Unlading”

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THE UNLADING, a dramatized poem, written and directed by Robert Earl Price, commissioned and produced by the Kent County Arts Council for Sultana Education Foundation’s Downrigging Weekend 2018.

The first stolen African people arrived in North America in August 1619 at Point Comfort, Virginia (Marker at Fort Monroe, Hampton, VA).  They were used to buy food for the captain and crew of a Dutch Man of War, they were brought to Jamestown and sold.  Their arrival was marked by four words, “20 and odd Negars”, by John Rolfe, in a letter to Sir Edwin Sandys, Treasurer of the Virginia Company of London. Two years later, in the Virginia census, they would be listed simply as “un-free”.

THE UNLADING is a dramatized poem in one act, written by Kent County’s award-winning playwright and poet, Robert Earl Price.  Price imagines the thoughts, words and past lives of each of these enslaved Africans as they are unladed from a Dutch Man of War.  (Downrigging attendees will know the Kalmar Nykle, from Wilmington, Delaware – this is a Dutch Man of War.). The poem was originally presented at Downrigging Weekend 2017 as part of a concert given by The Pam Ortiz Band, and has since been commissioned by the Kent County Arts Council into this dramatized piece. It will be performed four times throughout the 2019 Downrigging Weekend Festival at Janes Church in Chestertown with a cast of six local actors.

Performances are FREE and will be held at Janes United Methodist Church, 120 S. Cross Street, Chestertown as follows:

Friday, October 26, 2018 – 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, October 27, 2018 – 1:30 p.m. and 7 p.m.
Sunday, October 28, 2018 – 1:30 p.m.
The play runs approximately 30 minutes with no intermission.

The Kent County Arts Council is pleased to present this program in partnership with Sultana Education Foundation and their Downrigging Weekend. This production is funded in part by the Maryland State Arts Council, The Hedgelawn Foundation and The Indian Point Foundation

Please visit www.kentcountyartscouncil.org or call 410-778-3700 for more information.

KCAC Announces FY19 Officers, Names Carla Massoni to Board

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The Kent County Arts Council (KCAC) elected the following officers at its June 10, 2018 annual meeting to serve two-year terms:

Clark Bjorke, president
Charles Taylor, vice president
Meredith Davies Hadaway, secretary
Jason Claire, treasurer

The board also unanimously welcomed Carla Massoni of Massoni Art Gallery to a three-year term, effective July 1, filling a vacancy created by long-time member Marilee Schumann’s retirement.

“I am honored that Carla agreed to join our board,” said KCAC Director John Schratwieser, praising Massoni’s three-plus decades of commitment to arts and culture in Kent County. “She is one of those people who when we first met, I knew she ‘got it’. She shares the KCAC’s vision for the role of the arts in education, community development and economic vitality, and we shared the desire to maximize this role for the future of Kent County and its residents.”

Massoni has over 40 years of experience as an entrepreneur. A resident of Chestertown, Md., since 1985, she has been actively involved in community arts and humanities projects. She established a premier contemporary craft and fine art gallery (Massoni-Sommer) in 1990 and continues to provide educational programming and exhibitions featuring established contemporary artists at MASSONIART. In 2016, she opened CREATE art.craft.design in Chestertown with five partners – all award-winning craft artists.

Previous career highlights include: partnership in a pioneering human resources firm; founder and partner of a training program and school for women re-entering the job market, and owner of a boutique hotel and restaurant. She was the 2014 recipient of the William Donald Shaefer Helping People Award for Kent County.

Carla Massoni was eager to step up to support the Arts Council’s work. “I have long admired John Schratwieser. His commitment to the arts and the communities he serves is inspiring,” said Massoni. “I have great faith that John will continue Leslie Raimond’s dedication to serve those in Kent County who are often overlooked. John’s skills have been developed in numerous arts organizations and his work as Executive Director of Maryland Citizens for the Arts enables him to move with credibility on the both the state and national stage. The board he is developing is diverse and skilled. I look forward to working with all under his leadership.”

She continued by saying, “My particular focus will be the next generation. I hope to work closely with Kent County Public School teachers and students. There is no reason why Kent County cannot have the BEST schools in the State of Maryland. The arts provide the STEAM for the engine of social progress.”

Carla was a founding member on the Board of Directors for the Sultana Education Foundation; a member of the Board of Trustees at the Academy Art Museum in Easton, Md.; a member of the Board of the National Music Festival; a founding member of the Greater Chestertown Initiative; a member of the Washington College SANDBOX Advisory Board; and served on the Advisory Board of the Art of Stewardship Foundation.

Massoni founded the Women Helping Women annual concert to benefit migrant workers in Marydel, Md., and served as Southeast regional representative for the Beyond War Foundation’s Breakthrough Project US/Soviet Union. She previously served as a juror for the Academy Art Museum most recently for their 17th Annual Craft Show, has been a juror for numerous arts institutions in Maryland, and served as a juror for Philadelphia Museum of Art 2017 Craft Show.

The Kent County Arts Council was founded in 1975 and is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit arts service organization. KCAC’s mission is to invest, infuse, and inspire the arts for all in Kent County.

Self Driving Tour of 12 Kent County Museums set for May 5

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A self driving tour of 12 museums in Kent County MD, will be held on Saturday, May 5 from 10am to 4pm. Appealing to all ages and interests, they exhibit the culture, lifestyles and history of this Eastern Shore county.Knowledgeable guides, some special events, and free admission await visitors. Brochures with a map available at Visitors Center, Kent Library, Sumner Hall and The Bordley Building in Chestertown. Supported by the Kent County Tourism Department and the Kent County Arts Council.

Massey Aero Museum: A living airport-museum reminiscent of rural airports of bygone eras. Vintage aircraft, artifacts and touch and feel exhibits. A restoration shop operates most days. Frequent fly-ins. Open 10-4 33541 Maryland Line Rd Massey MD 21650

Kent Museum: Farming equipment representing the rural heritage of agriculture and domestic life. Charley’s House c. 1840, last surviving dwelling of a small black community. Open 10 – 3 13869 Turners Creek Rd Kennedyville MD 21645

Knocks Folly 1796 Federal style brick home houses exhibits which highlight the history of farming, the native American Tockwogh tribe and visit of Captain John Smith during his voyage on the Chesapeake Bay. Open 10 – 4 3761 Turners Creek Rd Kennedyville, Md 21645

Betterton Heritage Museum Betterton Fishing Ark open for tours. Speed Joiner decoys on display. Photos show fishing and hunting as main occupations. Popular beach in early 1900’s with photos of the grand Rigbie Hotel. Gift Shop. Open 10 – 3:30100 Main St Betterton MD 21610

Bordley History Center Headquarters for the Historical Society of Kent County. Many resources are available to the researcher within the library, genealogical and archival spaces. Historical exhibits and shop. Open 10 – 3 301 High St Chestertown MD 21620

Sumner Hall Restored and listed on National Register of Historic Places, it honors African-American Civil War vets of Charles Sumner Post #25, Grand Army of the Republic and features historical roles of African-Americans in Kent County. Open 10 – 4 206 S. Queen St Chestertown Chestertown MD 21620

African-American Schoolhouse Interpretive panel and exterior viewing only. Still in its original location. St. James Newtown Rd, north of Worton MD 21678

Cliffs Schoolhouse One room school with seven grades and one teacher served families of rural southern Kent County from 1878-1939. Furnishings, books and artifacts of the era. Blackboards with lessons. In its original location. Open 10 – 4 Cliffs City Rt. 289 S 8.5 miles south of Chestertown MD 21620

Rock Hall Museum Hand crafted boat and ship models, decoy carving shop replica, seafood processing, boat oystering rig, ice buoy, representing the marine culture of Rock Hall. Open 10 – 4 5585 Main St Town Building, Rock Hall Md 21661

Waterman’s Museum Artifacts and a fishing shanty from the early days of oystering, crabbing and fishing. Photographic documentation of past and present watermen. Next to Haven Harbour Marina. Open 10 – 4 Rock Hall Avenue, Rock Hall MD 21661

Tolchester Beach Revisited Presents and preserves the history of this amusement park 1877 to 1962. Pictures, artifacts and memorabilia of the most popular resort along the Chesapeake Bay. Open 10 – 4 Oyster Court off Sharp & Main Rock Hall MD 21661

Rock Hall Marine Restoration and Heritage Center Located in the historic Clam House on Rock Hall’s harbor. “Steamboats on the Chesapeake and Chester River” exhibit shows the history of recreational and working vessels on the ‘Bay. Open 11-4 21083 Chesapeake Avenue Rock Hall MD 21661

For more information please contact Carol Cordes (cordescarolb@gmail.com) or John Schratwieser(john@kentcountyartscouncil.org)

Kent County Arts Council Elects New Members to its Board of Directors

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The KCAC is delighted to announce the unanimous election of four new members to our Board of Trustees. Their diverse array of areas of expertise- from music performance to entrepreneurship to media relations – reaffirm the notion that a love for the arts can be carried across careers, age, and educational background.

These newly elected members join the Arts Council’s existing board members; Clarke Bjorke, Meredith Davies Hadaway, Carol DeGennaro, Marc Dykeman, Irene Moore, Robert Earl Price, Marilee Schumann, and Director Emeritus, Leslie Prince Raimond. The Arts Council is proud to introduce you to our new board members.

Top: Jason E. Claire, Stephanie King. Bottom: Kate McGraw, Charles Taylor.

Jason E. Claire– A native of the New York City suburbs, Jason fostered his interests in art, design, and gastronomy by graduating from Duke University with a triple major in art history, design, and pre-medicine. After receiving his MBA from Georgetown University, he co-founded a luxury furniture retailer and local gallery called Vastu in Washington D.C, which secured contracts for internationally recognized brands in addition to sponsoring six annual art exhibitions. While managing the development of interior design projects, Jason also supervised marketing, sales, training, and accounting at Vastu. Having recently returned from nearly five years in Switzerland with his husband Mark, where he worked in management consultancy for a company called FoundersCard, Jason is eager to establish firm roots in the Chestertown arts community and Kent County as a whole.

Stephanie King– After graduating from San Jose State University in California with a degree in Piano Performance, Stephanie earned her Master of Arts in Teaching and went on to direct band, choir, and orchestra in Oregon public schools. She later served as the Creative Arts Director for a metropolitan church in Portland, and for 12 years held the position of Music Director and Organist at a church in Sisters, Oregon. Her passion for music has taken her across many borders, as she has led five international choir tours and visits Italy every summer as faculty for the International Lyric Academy and Tuscia Opera Festival. Stephanie currently works here in Chestertown as the Music Director and Choirmaster at Emmanuel Church, and hopes to continue to support and encourage the arts in Kent County while also enjoying kayaking, yoga, cooking, and the company of her four grandchildren.

Kate McGraw– Kate is currently the Deputy Director of the Psychological Health Center of Excellence at the Department of Defense, where she focuses on meeting the mental health needs of female service members and veterans, as well as male and female service members who have experienced sexual assault and harassment. She is also the lead for the DoD Sexual Assault Advisory Group and the current chair for the Peace Corps Sexual Assault Advisory Council. Kate is also an accomplished musician and self-taught artist with an undergraduate degree in piano from the Hartt School of Music, where she also worked professionally as a vocal coach and music director. She has received numerous accolades for her solo piano performances, and in her spare time offers her services to local musical theatre companies and art galleries. Also a skilled writer, both professional and creative, Kate has penned an award winning column on mental health published in the Wilmington Delaware News Journal in addition to various professional articles in scientific books and journals.

Charles Taylor– Charles graduated from St. Paul’s College with a degree in Organizational Management and later studied Urban Planning at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. An early job as a radio announcer followed by a brief stint as a newspaper reporter launched Charles on a 37-year communications and media relations career encompassing the nonprofit, public, and private sectors. Charles has served as a senior corporate communications representative for Pepco and Dominion Virginia Power, a government media relations manager for Arlington County, VA, and a writer at the National Association of Counties in Washington, D.C. Since retiring in Chestertown last year, Charles has immersed himself in the community and fostered his love for music by by serving on the county’s Social Action Committee, the Marketing Committee of the National Music Festival, and by singing with the Chester River Chorale.

“It is critical, when entrusted with public funds, that the board and staff of the Kent County Arts Council not only be fully engaged and fully transparent about our grant making activities, but that we hold our grantees to the highest of standards of community engagement,” said Arts Council Director John Schratwieser, “Our board of directors plays a critical role in ensuring that each application for funding is thoroughly reviewed, and is done so objectively holding the benefit to the community in the highest regard.” Our new members live and/or work in our community and are committed to measuring the impact of the public dollars that we award. In addition, each is fully committed to the Kent County Arts Council’s mission to “invest, infuse, and inspire, the arts for all in Kent County.”

The new members begin their work immediately, and will be a part of the FY 2019 grant award process which will begin in May 2018 for the coming fiscal year.

www.kentcountyartscouncil.org

“Heroin & Healing” Exhibition by Kent County Arts Council

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The Kent County Arts Council Presents a new Exhibition: “Heroin & Healing: How the Opioid Epidemic and Hurting Go Together.” The exhibit will be on view March 2-31, 2018 at the Vincent & Leslie Prince Raimond Arts Building, 101 Spring Avenue, Chestertown.

Join us on Friday, March 2, 2018 – during Downtown Chestertown First Friday – for the opening of the Kent County Arts Council’s (KCAC) next exhibition: “Heroin & Healing”, a New Day Campaign program curated by Peter Bruun of Bruun Studios.

Across the country stories of heroin and other opioid overdoses are leading the evening news.  Young and old, black and white, rich and poor, the disease is an equal-opportunity killer.  Peter Bruun created the New Day Campaign =around the concept of using the arts to help erase the stigma of addiction and helping families and communities begin to heal.

Prior to founding the New Day Campaign in 2015, Bruun served as founding Exhibitions Educator for The Park School of Baltimore from  2000-2005, pioneering a gallery program that put side-by-side works by local and national artists with art and objects from and by Park student and faculty. In 2005, seeking to expand his artistic,  curatorial and social engagement reach to all of Baltimore, Bruun founded the non-profit organization Art on Purpose, dedicated to using art to bring people together around issues and ideas. In June 2010, Bruun stepped down as founding director of Art on Purpose to pursue full time his own social engagement studio practice under the aegis of Bruun Studios. Bruun founded the New Day Campaign in early 2015, following the death of his daughter Elisif from heroin addiction in 2014.

KCAC Director John Schratwieser met Bruun in Baltimore and attended a few New Day Campaign shows in 2015.  He invited Bruun to come to Kent County and work with local practitioners, nonprofit and government service agencies, and Washington College to create an exhibition and program of related events to engage the community in a broader, more open conversation about addiction and healing through art.

The exhibition brings to Kent County works of art by seven artists whose art illuminate  themes of the exhibition related to heroin and healing:

Elisif Bruun, daughter of Peter Bruun, died of a heroin overdose on February 11, 2014, leaving behind a precociously strong body of diverse artwork. The exhibition includes her last drawing: a self-portrait completed just 20 days before her passing.

Peter Bruun, exhibition curator and father of Elisif Bruun, is a long-time artist whose figurative abstract art carries layered narratives. The exhibition features a watercolor drawing inspired by his daughter’s journey that invokes the tension between desiring grounded wellness and an unsteady mind’s impulse toward self-destructive behaviors.

Phylicia Ghee is a photographer and healing artist who presents and documents ritualistic performances rich in spiritual expression and sensory experience. Phylicia, who was the Resident Healing Artist in the New Day Campaign’s 2015 inaugural season, will exhibit a video in the exhibition.

Michelle Labonte is a Baltimore-based artist whose work documents her feelings, observations, and perspectives from living with debilitating depression and other related disorders. The artist’s works in the exhibition offer an illuminating look inside the heart of someone hurting.

Mark V. Lord is a photographer whose 2016 photographs of individuals who saved lives by administering Naloxone to opioid overdose victims where featured in a 2017 Maryland statewide public awareness campaign. A selection of photographs from that project will be included in the exhibition.

Anthony Ness, who lives near Washington DC, is a person in recovery whose colorful hyper-realist art expresses his emotional journey through using and sobriety. Several of his works will be included in the exhibition.

Sharon Strouse is an artist and art therapist. Since the passing of her daughter, Kristin Rita Strouse, from suicide in 2001, Sharon has immersed herself in healing from grief. The author of Artful Grief and a nationally known presenter in art therapy and recovery from grief, Sharon will share some of her own collages created in her own therapeutic journey after Kristin’s death.

The Month-long show will feature five special events:

OPENING – First Friday, March 2, from 4 – 7 p.m. Raimond Arts Building

GALLERY TALK – Saturday, March 3, from 2 – 4 p.m. Join Peter Bruun and other artists featured in the show for a conversation about their works.  Raimond Arts Building.

TRAUMA, ART & HEALING – Sunday, March 4, from 2 – 4:30 p.m. Led by healing artists Phylicia Ghee and Peter Bruun, a community conversation followed by a healing experience workshop.  Hynson Lounge, Washington College

Healing Workshop is FREE, but space is limited.

FILM & DISCUSSION – Friday, March 30, 7 p.m.,A screening of a 36-minute long video version of an art installation created by Peter Bruun about the life and passing of his daughter, followed by a public discussion with the artist and curator about his piece and the founding of the New Day Campaign. Norman James Theater, Washington College

OPEN MIC & CLOSING RECEPTION – Saturday, March 31. Open Mic – 3 – 5 p.m.  Sharing/Informing/Healing: An Open-Mic Experience is a community-oriented event sharing a wide ranging spectrum of experiences and feelings related to the opioid epidemic specifically and addiction generally. Rich in fellowship and hope, the event features music, stories, open mic opportunities, resource information, and a special slideshow highlighting remembrances of those we have lost, expressions of gratitude for those who have been there for us, well-wishes for those who are hurting, and art of all kinds related to recovery, wellness, and hurting. Featuring Sombarkin’.  Garfield Center for the Arts.

CLOSING RECEPTION Saturday, March 31. 5 – 7 p.m. Raimond Building.

The Kent County Arts Council and the New Day Campaign are proud to be working with multiple local partners/sponsors.  They include: REACH: Prevention, Education, Advocacy Center at Washington College; Maryland Coalition of Families; Kent County Behavioral Health & the Opioid Intervention Team; Eastern Shore Psychological Services; Chester River Wellness Alliance; and Herbal Alchemy.

New Day Campaign www.newdaycampaign.org

Kent County Arts Council www.kentcountyartscouncil.org

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