New Jersey Stage

Friday, November 11, 2011

Cape May Stage Offers, 'Role of the Artist': an Art Panel of Professionals

(Cape May, NJ) -- In conjunction with the current production of John Logan's Tony award-winning play Red, Cape May Stage, South Jersey's premier professional Equity theatre will present 'Role of the Artist', a post-show discussion featuring a panel of Art professionals after the Sunday matinee on November 13.  Hosted by Artistic Director Roy Steinberg (currently starring as Mark Rothko in Red), the panel includes Michael Cagno, Executive Director Noyes Museum of Art, Sandra Bloodworth, director of Metropolitan Transportation Authority Arts for Transit and Urban Design in New York City, and Victor Grasso. Fine Artist.  'Role of the Artist' is free to patrons attending the performance and will take place immediately following the 3 p.m. matinee presentation at the Robert Shackleton Playhouse at Bank and Lafayette Streets in downtown Cape May.

In Red master American expressionist Mark Rothko has just landed the biggest commission in the history of modern art; a series of murals for New York's famed Four Seasons Restaurant. In the two fascinating years that follow, Rothko works feverishly with his assistant, Ken. But when Ken gains the confidence to challenge him, Rothko faces the agonizing possibility that his crowning achievement could also become his demise.

The 'Role of the Artist' panel will address several of the myraid questions that the play asks of its audience.  Rothko talks of "overmantles" - those paintings doomed to become decoration.  Should a painting decorate a home or have some other reason to exist?  Is art meant to disturb? Are there parallels in theater and the visual arts?  Where in the continuum of art does your work fit in?  Audiences are encouraged to participate the post-show Q&A where all comments and questions will be addressed.

'Role of the Artist' will be presented November 13 immediately following the 3 p.m. matinee.  Performances for Red run Thursdays through Saturdays at 8pm and Saturdays and Sundays at 3pm through November 19th.  Tickets are $35 adults, $30 seniors, and $15 students. Call (609) 884-1341 for reservations and information or visit the theatre's Web site,  Red is generously co-sponsored by Saltwood House Bed & Breakfast and Hemingway's at the Grand Hotel.


Michael Cagno
From 1999- 2006, Michael Cagno served as the Executive Director for the Riverfront Renaissance Center for the Art in Millville, New Jersey.  During his tenure in Millville, Michael worked with government and community organizations to revitalize its downtown by using the arts as a catalyst for economic development and social transformation. Since August 2006, Michael has served as Executive Director of The Noyes Museum of Art of Richard Stockton College. In four short years, Michael has doubled the museum's membership, increased programming by 40%, and established a satellite gallery in Hammonton, New Jersey and most recently, a formal partnership with The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey.  This partnership has allowed the museum to increase its capacity to make the arts more accessible and inclusive for residents of southern New Jersey. A few examples of his new programs include: artist memberships, Healing Arts, ArtPort (gallery space at AC International Airport), Arts on the Avenue in Hammonton and a new art gallery at the Seaview Resort.  Michael served on the Board of Trustees for the South Jersey Cultural Alliance as Vice President and currently a Board of Trustees for New Jersey Art Pride and as a board member for the New Jersey Association of Museums.   Having a Bachelors Degree in Fine Art from Rowan University, Masters Degree in Museum in Management and a Graduate Certificate in Arts Administration from Seton Hall University has allowed Michael to follow his passion for the arts.  He also shares this passion as an adjunct arts professor at Cumberland County College and Stockton College.

Sandra Bloodworth
Sandra Bloodworth is the director of Metropolitan Transportation Authority Arts for Transit and Urban Design.  As director, she is responsible for the Arts for Transit programs, whose mission it is to commission public art that enhances the transportation environment.  In addition to the Arts for Transit award-winning permanent art program, she is responsible for Music Under New York, the Transit Poster program and the Light Box Project.  She represents the MTA on station aesthetics and urban design issues, with a focus on promoting design excellence.  She joined Arts for Transit in 1988 as a manager and became deputy director in 1992 and director in 1996.  She is the co-author of Along the Way: MTA Arts for Transit.  Her previous experience includes working as a development associate for the Studio in a School Association.  Sandra has taught Visual Art and Urban Design in the Department of Art and Arts Professions graduate program at New York University and studio classes in the fine arts departments at Florida State University and the University of Mississippi.  Bloodworth is an artist and holds a B.S. from Mississippi College, an M.A. from the University of Mississippi and an M.F.A. from Florida State University.  Bloodworth received the Fund for the City of New York's 2005 Sloan Public Service Award in recognition of her work in the field of public art.

Victor Grasso
Earlier in his fine art career, Victor Grasso distinguished himself by painting hyper-photorealistic depictions of the human form, often intertwined with animalistic imagery. Over the past few years he has begun weaving numerous images into one canvas, creating a visual overload of complex graphic compositions. Through variety and virtuosity, Grasso is able to elude being pigeonholed. Grasso still displays the graphic weight of the pop artist, but manages a triumphant marriage with the style of the contemporary Baroque Spanish Masters. This is accomplished through the precise study of elaborate composition, diagrammatic tempos, and vibrant veneers of sixteenth century European paintings, as well as a thorough knowledge of twentieth century American art. Grasso enjoyed his first show at the age of 21 and since then has had numerous exhibitions along the eastern seaboard.

This season's sponsors include 410 Bank Street/Frescos, Exit Zero, CapeSCape, The Corner Cottage Apartments, Harry's Bar & Grille at the Montreal Inn, La Mer Beachfront Inn, Lucky Bones, Cape May Winery, and The Washington Inn.