Art show inspired by women opens at Garden and Civic Center
Latrobe artist Mary Ellen Raneri says she has long considered an exhibition of artwork inspired by women.
Partnering with Ligonier artist Raven Cintron, she is making that happen with the 35-piece show, “The Art of Woman,” opening Sept. 3 at the Greensburg Garden and Civic Center, 951 Old Salem Road.
“I wanted to do the show with somebody. … I feel like doing a woman’s show, a sense of collaboration and camaraderie is important,” Raneri says.
Using various media — watercolor, acrylic, oil, fabric art, hand embroidery — the women describe the show as a testimony to women’s strength, work, voice, and beauty.
Most of her pieces for the show, Raneri says, are “celebratory, looking at success.”
Her subjects, including some real-life inspirations, feature people who encounter roadblocks and “keep trying to grab life.” They include a woman who lost both legs in a car accident and went on to adopt four children as a single mom.
Another, in her 60s, runs Ragnar (long-distance) marathons.
“She has set these goals for herself. She’s another phenomenal woman to me. I think we need to hear more about phenomenal women,” Raneri says. “A lot of times women are reluctant to toot their own horns, I’ve noticed. … I just wanted to spotlight some chicks.”
From cooking to crochet
After obtaining a culinary arts degree and working in the food service industry for about 15 years, Cintron’s career path changed.
Leaving the world of professional kitchens for health reasons, she taught herself how to crochet from a book.
“I’ve always been kind of crafty. … (Crocheting) kind of became less of a hobby when people started being interested in buying things,” she says.
Cintron established her Etsy site, RavensCraftCreations, in 2011. In addition to hats, gloves and scarves made from patterns, she also crafts photography props for infants (crocheted turtle shells, cowboy boots) and makes crochet plush toys with themes like Star Wars and Harry Potter.
“Last year, I began participating in a monthly art challenge for anyone with a blog,” she says.
The different themes led to her experimenting more with felting, quilting and beading, more along the lines of what she is showing in the exhibit.
One piece she created, “Moon Tree, Sisters Three,” is fabric art with a flannel background and a design made with embroidery floss and beads.
For “A Woman’s Place is in the Kitchen,” Cintron uses one of her own former chef’s coats, her name still stitched on the chest. Chicken wire gives the jacket its frame.
“That’s definitely my most ‘statement’ piece, I guess,” she says.
The message is that a woman’s place can be in the kitchen both domestically and professionally.
Most of the pieces shown will be available for sale.
Also included in the exhibit is a soft flowing fabric sculpture titled “We Will Not Rust Away.”
The collaborative piece includes the contributions of 15 women, and joins repurposed fabric to express women’s strength, both individually and working toward a common goal.
A reception from 6-8 p.m. Sept. 11 at the center, including art, light snacks and music, is free and open to the public.
Details: 724-836-3074 or thepalacetheatre.org/ggcc/
Mary Pickels is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Mary at 724-836-5401, [email protected] or via Twitter .