Grand Opening Festivities Launch Express Newark as an Arts, Social, and Entrepreneurial Hub

On May 5, an exciting vision for Newark and its residents will come fully alive.  On that day, Rutgers University-Newark (RU-N) will officially mark the grand opening of Express Newark, its arts incubator and community-university collaborative space located on three floors of the Hahne & Co. building at 54 Halsey St.  RU-N envisions Express Newark as the fulcrum of the city’s burgeoning Arts District, and this two-part event – a talk followed by a grand opening celebration --  realizes that dream, officially establishing Express Newark as a permanent third-space for arts, culture, learning, entertainment, and entrepreneurship for residents of Newark and surrounding communities.  

Appropriately, the first part of the grand opening will be  “Newark: My Home in the Arts,” a talk that will bring Wellesley College Assistant Professor of the Arts of Africa and the African Diaspora, Dr. Nikki A. Greene, back to her native Newark, where she developed her love of the arts.  This 4 p.m. free program, sponsored by the University’s Price Institute on Ethnicity, Culture and the Modern Experience, will launch the inaugural L+M Development Partners Lecture Series.   More information

 Immediately following the talk, at 5 p.m., the grand opening celebration will engage the community with a tour of all of Express Newark’s programs and spaces.  Each program and space features a community-based aspect and a direct and open connection to Greater Newark and its citizens.  The festivities include live music, food, tours of all three floors of Express Newark, free limited edition giveaways, interactive events ranging from the pop up print shop at the Newark Print Shop (2nd floor), and 3D facial scanning, 3D printing at the Form Design Studio (2nd floor), to opportunities for selfies and Polaroid portraits in Shine Portrait Studio (3rd floor), to family-friendly activities such as Mexican paper flower-making in the Paul Robeson Galleries on the third floor. Visitors can even be projected into a variety of backgrounds while standing in front of the green screen in the fourth-floor Video Production Studio.  More information

All activities are free and open to the community.

Express Newark helps to fulfill one of the chief goals of RU-N’s strategic plan: to create third spaces where RU-N can engage collaboratively with community partners and residents further fulfilling the university’s proud tradition of anchor institution investment in its home city. RU-N faculty, staff, students, and community arts leaders, along with partners from community arts organizations in the city’s socially, economically, and culturally diverse neighborhoods, all worked together on its development.


In sync with the vision behind Express Newark, the L+M Development Partners Lecture Series will bring prominent thinkers in the world of the public arts and humanities to Express Newark “to reflect on the foundations and aims of our practice. Deeply rooted in our city and looking out to the nation and the world, and firmly grounded in notions of place and social justice, its goal is to bring the arts and humanities to bear on contemporary life in Newark and beyond.” L+M Development Partners purchased and re-developed the Hahne building in partnership with Newark-based Hanini Group.


Nikki A. Greene is an art historian whose expertise is African and African-American identities, music, the body, and feminism in 20th century and contemporary art. She has been on faculty at the Department of Art at Wellesley College since 2010. She received her bachelor of art degree in art history from Wesleyan University and master and doctoral degrees from the University of Delaware. For more information:

MEDIA CONTACTS:  Carla Capizzi and Kimberlee Williams, 973/353-5262.