Lewis Lanza Rudolph: New York Through the Final Years A Brother’s Legacy Continued
In 2014, Denise Ecenroad first brought the artwork of her late brother, Lewis Lanza Rudolph, to Mulberry Art Studios. The exhibit spanned four decades and took up nearly every inch of wall space in the sizeable gallery. This August, Ecenroad will return to Mulberry Art Studios with two new collections of Rudolph’s paintings for Lewis Lanza Rudolph: New York Through the Final Years, A Brother’s Legacy Continued. The paintings of New York Through the Final Years will share a collection of work that had been shown in New York City’s galleries in the 1980s, along with a collection of never-before-seen pieces created during Rudolph’s final years of life. The exhibit opens with a First Friday Reception on August 7th from 5pm-9pm, and will be available for viewing throughout the month of August.
Lewis Lanza Rudolph began painting in 1966 and continued into the late 1990's, mostly painting in obscurity. “Lewis was socially awkward” explains his sister, Denise Ecenroad. “He preferred to live his life primarily in seclusion.” Rudolph lived his entire life in his childhood home in Red Bank, NJ, and spent his free time alone, walking the boardwalks of Asbury Park to Belmar, NJ, and painting in his basement. He died in 2012 during valve replacement surgery.
Rudolph’s work is predominately abstract, created in oils on Masonite with occasional added paper and wax layering. He was favorably critiqued by the New York Times during the time he spent showing his work in New York City and Northern New Jersey galleries. Pieces from that time period, which he framed himself, will be featured in the Mulberry Ballroom while a collection of work from his final years, which has never before been exhibited and was framed by his family after his death, will hang on the walls of the Louise Gallery.
Paintings from New York Through the Final Years will not be for sale at this time, because a retrospective exhibit of Rudolph’s work is scheduled for June, July, and August of 2016 at Brookdale College's Monmouth Museum of Art in Lincroft, NJ. It remains a goal of his family to return his paintings to the New York City and New Jersey venues of his early art career. Seeing her brother recognized for his accomplishments in art remains the hope of Ecenroad and her husband Bruce, who are guardians of Rudolph’s artwork and the torchbearers of his legacy.
Valerie Smith: My Kind of Happy
Happiness comes from many different places. For Valerie Smith, the photographer behind Grace Photos, true happiness springs forth from her family, her love, and her art. These are the things that bring her joy. These are the things that radiate from My Kind of Happy, a stunning collection of photography that Smith will be exhibiting at Mulberry Art Studios this August. The public is invited to come out and meet the artist at a First Friday Opening Reception on August 7 from 5pm until 9pm. The exhibit will also be available throughout the month of August during regular gallery hours, weekdays from 10am until 4pm.
Valerie Smith has always strived to stay true to herself and do that which makes her heart happy. For the past thirteen years, what has made her heart happy has been capturing the unspoken connection in families. She has worked along all types and stages of parenthood. “I have honored the parents who rejoice, and also those who are bereaved” explains Smith, “and believe that equally, those parents deserve to cherish their memories as they are.”
She describes the freedom she finds in creating art as a privilege, and is grateful for the opportunity to interact with families in such an intimate way. “To be connected to families through the most pure, vulnerable, joyful first breaths into parenthood has been one of most beautiful soundtracks to my life as a photographer, and mother” Smith says. My Kind of Happy is more than just beautiful photography. It is the honest expressions of a beautiful heart.