January 2, 2018 Share

D&R Greenway Hosts “For Love of Nature” Through Feb 9th

D&R Greenway’s Olivia Rainbow Gallery Presents ‘For Love of Nature’ Whimsical Children’s Art by Michael Ciccotello on view through February 9

D&R Greenway Land Trust’s Olivia Rainbow Gallery presents the whimsical children’s illustrations of Michael Ciccotello in For Love of Nature, on view January 5 through February 9. Prints of Ciccotello’s images are for sale, a percentage supporting D&R Greenway’s preservation and stewardship mission. A Saturday, January 20, Family Program with the artist will take place 2-4 p.m. All participants will have the opportunity to interact with nature, designing trees symbolic of the artist’s ‘seeds’ — love, caring, empathy and kindness. Art materials provided. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Free. Please rsvp@drgreenway.org. 609-924-4646. Gallery hours Monday-Friday, 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. One Preservation Place, Princeton 08540. www.drgreenway.org.

D&R Greenway Land Trust’s Olivia Rainbow Gallery presents the whimsical children’s illustrations of Michael Ciccotello in For Love of Nature, on view January 5 through February 9. Prints of Ciccotello’s images are for sale, a percentage supporting D&R Greenway’s preservation and stewardship mission. A Saturday, January 20, Family Program with the artist will take place 2-4 p.m. All participants will have the the opportunity to interact with nature, designing trees symbolic of the artists ‘seeds’ of love, caring, empathy and kindness. Art materials will be provided. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Free. Please rsvp@drgreenway.org. 609-924-4646. Gallery hours Monday-Friday, 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. One Preservation Place, Princeton 08540. www.drgreenway.org.

Artwork by Michael Ciccotello conveys messages of encouragement and hope, especially in unlikely settings. Subtle wisdom is wrapped in consummate playfulness. His recent Johnson & Johnson Headquarters’ Gallery exhibition featured child-centric scenes, in which rainbows and seeds reward modern children and wild creatures, even in cities. In Ciccotello’s world, the ‘little folk’, such as tortoises and snails, are awarded ribbons for persistence in the face of obstacles. Nature joins Ciccotello creatures, carrying uplifting messages across each page.

Ciccotello admits “I’ve always wanted to draw, for as long as I can remember, on anything that came to hand.” Teachers encouraged him. His exuberant work speaks to the child who may doubt him- or herself, or who may have suffered criticism that could stifle a dream. “What I want the children to take away from my art, and our workshop, is ‘Never feel discouraged. Do what you love, and all else will follow.’”

Answering the question, “Are you an artist?” isn’t always easy, even at this stage in Ciccotello’s career. A child on a recent train to New York saw him drawing and asked, “Are you an artist?” he recounts. Ciccotello pondered he question, slowly answering ‘yes’. He reveals, “Now, I would add, ‘Find a passion. Something you would like to do to fill an entire day. If that turns out to be art, then that makes you an artist.’”

Ciccotello received his Bachelor of Fine Arts, with a concentration in painting, from Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University. His 14 years in broadcast motion graphics includes stints at CNN and Fox Business Network. Currently, Ciccotello serves as Art and Design Director at Telos Corporation. His art has been featured on Liquitex.com, CNN, ClothPaperScisors.com, Artists & Makers Magazine and Industry Magazine. In addition to his exhibition at Johnson & Johnson Headquarters, his work has been featured at the New York Design Center, among other venues. Ciccotello is an active member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, Children’s Book Illustrators Group NY, and a contributing member at AllTheWonders.com.
As he “makes it in the grown-up world,” Ciccotello never forgoes the child’s perspective. “My kids think I go to the office to color all day,” he says. “And I guess, technically, I do.”

Prints of Ciccotello scenes will be available for purchase during the exhibition, a percentage supporting D&R Greenway’s preservation mission.

http://ciccotello.com/artist/

The Olivia Rainbow Gallery was founded and is funded by Chris and Leslie Kuenne of Princeton, keeping alive the memory of their 5-year-old Olivia. Ciccotello’s “Find Your Rainbow” exemplifies the spirit of this artistically gifted youngster, whose passion for nature and art was particularly fulfilled by the arrival of rainbows.

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D&R GREENWAY LAND TRUST IS IN ITS 29TH YEAR of preserving and protecting natural lands, farmlands and open spaces throughout central and southern New Jersey. Through continuous preservation and stewardship — caring for land and easements to ensure they remain protected and ecologically healthy in perpetuity — D&R Greenway nurtures a healthier and more diverse environment for people and wild species in seven counties. Accredited by the national Land Trust Accreditation Commission, D&R Greenway’s mission is to preserve and care for land and inspire a conservation ethic, now and for the future. Since its founding in 1989, D&R Greenway has permanently preserved more than 20,000 acres, an area 20 times the size of New York City’s Central Park, including 30 miles of trails open to the public.  The Johnson Education Center, a circa 1900 restored barn at One Preservation Place, Princeton, is D&R Greenway’s home. Through programs, art exhibits and related lectures, D&R Greenway inspires greater public commitment to safeguarding land.

 

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