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Abington Art Center is a community center focused on music, drawing, painting, oil, ceramics, metals, sewing, embroidery, pottery, and jewelry classes. It is an outdoor free concert venue, with theater, dance, jazz, and live music on stage. You can buy gifts, crafts, bracelets, necklaces, and rings at the unique holiday fair.

Where I Come From by Mindy Flexer

On View June 9 – July 24, 2023

Opening Reception | Friday, June 9 | 5:00p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

2023 Summer Juried Show – Ethnicity Through the Eyes of the Artist

Ethnicity Through the Eyes of the Artist challenged our artists to explore and contemplate the meaning of ethnicity, and the ideas, associations, and questions that surround this concept. 

Ethnicity can express a shared culture such as language, worldview, and value systems of a particular social group. A person’s identity and personal enculturation/acculturation experience often shape their orientation to the world and how it is seen from their eyes. Artists have an uncanny ability to bring to life a perspective that can frame or deconstruct these arrangements in a visual way. This challenges the viewer to reflect on, and see beyond attitudes and boundaries that have been formed previously within the greater culture. Artists have the ability to creatively illustrate how ethnicity, just as language, is an evolution that is constantly shifting.

Our artists explored what ethnicity means to them personally versus how ethnicity represents them in the greater culture. The selected works represent ethnicity in an array of forms, from mosaic and collage works, to drawings, paintings, and wearable art. Some artists saw this as an opportunity to educate, while others used this as a means of self expression. From celebrating cultures and traditions, to rejecting the stereotypes and associations encircling ethnic identities, our artists offer deeply personal investigations that highlight the complexities within ethnicity and how it intersects with identity.

As you explore the work on view, we would like you to consider your own relationship ethnicity.
How has your personal experience regarding ethnic identity shaped you?
What is the boundary between identity and ethnicity and how do they coexist?
What values tie you to your cultural heritage?

Our 2023 Summer Juried Show Jurors:

Erika Land, M.A.
Ethnographer, Artist, and Educator

Juror and curator, Erika Land, received her BFA and teaching certification at Moore College of Art & Design. Influenced by her undergraduate studio work, which focused on cultural arts, Land went on to pursue further education, receiving her M.A. in cultural anthropology from Eastern University. She is a current anthropology teacher at Eastern University, and maintains a studio practice in her studio based in Phoenixville, PA.

Cheryl Harper
Artist and Independent Curator

Juror Cheryl Harper received her MFA in printmaking from the University of Delaware and her M.A. in art history from Temple University. In addition, Harper completed a two-year Museology program through the University of Illinois, which looks at all areas of museum study, including exhibit planning.

Harper works as an independent curator, while maintaining an art practice in printmaking. She has had work exhibited throughout the country, including the Maier Museum in Lynchburg, VA, Drew University in Madison, NJ, and the InLiquid Art + Design gallery in Philadelphia, PA.

Nina Guzmán
Executive Director of Alianzas De Phoenixville

Juror Nina M. Guzmán received her Bachelor’s degree in Urban Missions and Social Work from The University of Valley Forge. 

Guzmán is the founder and executive director of Alianzas de Phoenixville, a non-profit organization that works to create a welcoming place for diverse immigrant communities. Alianzas de Phoenixville connects individuals with the resources needed to better acclimate to their immediate world and neighbors.

Exhibiting Artists

Sarah Watkins-Nathan
Dawn Merritt
Z Kaplan
Birgit Raders-Eichinger
Kim Robbins
Lauren Silver
Marissa Georgiou
Frank Burd
Lauren Vargas
Lisa Smith
Janell Sampson
Oxana Kovalchuk
Gary Grissom
Maremi Andreozzi
Kirsten Cunningham

David Levy
Oscar Vance
Kimberly Stemler
Violet Alexandre
Erika Matyok
David Fuentes
Marlene Adler
Jacqueline Valenzuela
Thomas Murray
Jeremy Sims
Giulia Giordano
Debra Powell-Wright
Robin Brownfield
Jerod Mason
Henry Morales

DeJeonge Reese
Ronald Washington
Mindy Flexer
Laura Madeleine
Robert Reinhardt
Martha Knox
Brenda Rydstrom
Rickie Sanders
Ted Lutkus
Gail Morrison-Hall
Maxine Schwartz
Laila Wah
L. A. Feldstein
Alana Walters

Our 2023 Summer Juried Show Award Winners

Kirsten Cunningham, Expectations (Awarded Best in Show by Erika Land)

“Being biracial in a country with such a complicated history can often cause confusion for someone longing for a sense of identity. [This] piece symbolizes the different cultural influences that aim to shape us into what they want us to be. Being half-black in this country can cause a feeling of being pulled in both directions and never truly fitting into one or the other. The hands in this image are different shades that range from dark to light, which symbolize the ‘acceptable’ identities and norms that exist. Black, white, and grey are thoughtful color choices; they represent that we are colorless at our core and that American society has long dulled our cultural origins and heritage. The color of our skin is minor and insignificant. I am not just ‘black or white’; instead, I am a collection of colors, cultures, stories, heritage, and history.”

Alana Walters, There’s Levels to This… (Awarded Most Unique Application of Material by Cheryl Harper)

“This piece is directly tied into the cultural phenomena of African hair braiding. When a black child goes to get their hair done in the salon, there are posters hanging on the wall depicting different styles of braids that they can choose from. The panels in this piece represent parts of different posters. The print work within them represents the different hair styles. The process of getting your hair done by another person is not only a cultural experience, it’s also in many ways a meditative experience. A way to decompress and heal our minds in that moment. I want this piece to open up discussions among black communities about the importance of mental health. Not only is it a topic that needs to be discussed more often but this is a topic that can be discussed in a place we feel most at ease; a hair salon.”

Henry Morales, Mi Papa Jose (Awarded Most Compelling Interpretation of Theme by Nina Guzmán)

“My experience as a first-generation Guatemalan American inspires me to explore themes of labor, identity, hybridity, and place through works that mix non-traditional and familiar materials.
I am driven to explore what it means to be a child of immigrants and investigate the impact of migrating and assimilating to a new land.”

Select Works