GALLERY U BOUTIQUE

GALLERY U BOUTIQUE
439 SOUTH AVE WEST, WESTFIELD NJ

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

New window installation at Gallery U Red Bank




This article originally appeared in the Red Bank Patch, August 21, 2012

The (Dis)Embodiment of Artistic Expression


An art installation of various doll head sculptures by area artist Dawn Gilmore is turning heads at Gallery U.


What you see is Dawn Gilmore.

The doll heads, each sitting on a thin pillar behind the glass front, attracting more than the odd stare from passersby, have been transformed. They are interesting, absolutely; disconcerting for some, too, perhaps.

But each figure is an honest expression, representative, Gilmore says, of an emotion or experience in her life. What you see is a razorblade Mohawk, some glam face paint, an eye held to the face with bandages, and the nails protruding from the forehead of a sculpture that most resembles television era’s interpretation of Frankenstein’s monster.

What each of these mean, exactly, is up for interpretation. What’s for certain, however, is that these pieces are Dawn Gilmore.

Gilmore’s mixed media art, titled "Purged Memories," is currently on display and serving as the front window display at Gallery U on Broad Street. The gallery and art rehabilitation center has made a habit of generating provocative window displays, contracting local artists, like Gilmore, or using the work created by its clients, to create a vision that’s never stale or boring.

Gallery coordinator Robert Langdon said Gallery U has presented some of Gilmore’s work before and that the mixed media presentation, along with its striking visual style, would be a good way to draw attention. When it comes to disembodied doll heads, there’s no denying that.

“Some of her pieces can be controversial, thought-provoking,” Langdon said during a brief interview. “It might not be everyone’s taste, but since it’s been up I’ve seen people turn their heads and stop to look on the sidewalk. It’s definitely getting a response and isn’t that what art’s all about?”

Gilmore, a Cliffwood Beach resident, isn’t interested in creating art that shocks people. Art, how it’s created, how it’s perceived, and, certainly, how it’s judged, is all very personal. And while she appreciates positive reactions to her art – those she certainly welcomes – it’s reaction in general, varied as it is from one person to the next, that tells her what’s working.

Still, her work, whether it’s mixed media, painting, drawing, or photography, among other media, is created for one person, she said, herself.

“(Mixed media are) usually very personal pieces,” the 35-year-old said. “It’s usually representative of something I’m going through at that moment.

“It’s something I do for myself. Too, I want to show it, and possibly sell it, but the general purpose, the focus, is very personal.”

As far as using doll heads as a canvas, that’s something Gilmore started doing years ago while attending art school. As part of a renewed focus on creating mixed media with found objects, Gilmore returned to the things that had provided so much inspiration years ago.

What it is, exactly, about doll heads that invites wild interpretation, Gilmore can’t exactly say. She sees something like a doll head and sets to work. Often with only a rough idea of where she’s going to take it, the end product is wildly original and more than a bit creepy.

And though the pieces, staring out at pedestrians from behind the glass through blank eyes, or in the case of some of the pieces, one or three eyes, are each strikingly different in color, conception and design, they still represent one person: Dawn Gilmore.








The doll heads will be on display at Gallery U until September. To check them out, simply walk by the gallery's store front, or see them inside during gallery hours or Friday's Red Bank Art Walk. Gilmore's art can be seen at dawngilmore.com.

Friday, August 10, 2012


Gallery U. Will Make You Grin


Mama! Let’s go in and look at the Birthday Legs!
Sometimes, living in Montclair is too good. We have movies showing in gardens and on the streets, music in the parks, and our grocery stores partner with our art museum to give us outdoor entertainment as well. Sometimes, perhaps because there are so many special events around us, we overlook the everyday awesomeness.
Thanks to my kids, my eyes were drawn to Gallery U as we walked on Glenridge Avenue after camp.  ”Mama! Let’s go in and look at the Birthday Legs!” That was enough to get me to shield my eyes with my hand and peer into the storefront window.  And yes. There were birthday legs.
Now, the college-aged me would have written a paper on how this piece of art was commenting on women’s bodies as the showy cake-toppers of Life. (We even found out that the stockings and shoes are changed every month or so.) Or perhaps I would have morphed it into a commentary on the famous leg lamp in A Christmas Story. But with two preschoolers, I just thought it looked cool. So we opened the door, and we entered Gallery U.


Just a small detail from the “Coolest Bathroom in the World.”
Not only did we get to see the coolest bathroom in the world, we also saw wonderfully fun multimedia art pieces in all different styles. We loved the butterflies in several of the pieces, and I am going back to take a second look at the Louis Armstrong painting (surrounded by butterflies).
The coolest part of Gallery U. is that it doesn’t only display established alternative art; it also displays art by artists who have had traumatic brain injuries. How cool is that? And some of the art is truly affordable – we saw some cool, smaller pieces for $10!
Do yourself a favor and stop by Gallery U. for a look-see during the day, or attend one of their art shows or fashion shows. It will make you smile. I promise.
Gallery U. (Montclair) 179 Glenridge Avenue Montclair, NJ 07042‎   (973) 707-7159

Thursday, August 9, 2012

POETRY NIGHTS AT GALLERY U

MONTCLAIR: THURSDAY, AUGUST 16TH, 2012





BE PART OF FASHION'S NIGHT OUT INTERNATIONAL, RIGHT HERE IN MONTCLAIR



FASHION NIGHT'S OUT : MONTCLAIR NEW JERSEY.  
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 6TH   
6-11 PM

FASHION FORWARD FASHION SHOW AT 

GALLERY U MONTCLAIR: 7PM 
179 GLENRIDGE AVE
 WITH FASHIONS BY 
UI COLLECTIVE, BUMBLEBEE, SPEAKEASY VINTAGE, BLACKBIRD LANE, ONE SAVVY DESIGN, MIKE TAURIELLO COUTURE, ATELIER, CLARENCE BLACK, BOUTIQUE U



PARLOR STUDIO: 8PM 
223 Glenridge Ave
WITH FASHIONS BY SOFISTAFUNK CLOTHING




ATELIER: 8:30 PM
4 South Fullerton, corner of Church St.
CLOSING CEREMONY,  PHOTO SHOOTS, GIVEAWAYS, PRIZES AND RAFFLES FEATURING GIFT BASKETS BY BOBBI BROWN COSMETICS

REFRESHMENTS BY SALUTE, BRICK OVEN






COMING , SEPTEMBER 15, 2012
GALLERY U,  MONTCLAIR


COMBAT PAPER PROJECT: COMING IN SEPTEMBER, GALLERY U MONTCLAIR


The Combat Paper Project utilizes art making workshops to assist veterans in reconciling and sharing their personal experiences as well as broadening the traditional narrative surrounding service and the military culture.
Through papermaking workshops veterans use their uniforms worn in combat to create cathartic works of art. The uniforms are cut up, beaten into a pulp and formed into sheets of paper. Veterans use the transformative process of papermaking to reclaim their uniform as art and begin to embrace their experiences in the military.
The Combat Paper Project is based out of art studios throughout the United States and has traveled to Canada and the United Kingdom, providing veterans workshops, exhibitions, performances and artists' talks. This project is made possible by a multifaceted collaboration between artists, art collectors, academic institutions and veterans. Through ongoing participation in the papermaking process, combat papermakers are attempting to progress from creating works specific to their military experiences to expressing a broader vision on militarism and society. The work reflects both the anger of the past and hope for the future. Through this collaboration between civilians and veterans, a much-needed conversation is generated regarding our responsibilities to the returned veteran and an understanding of the dehumanizing effects of warfare.
WWW.COMBATPAPER.ORG FOR MORE INFO