New York Times Features Express Newark Exhibitions

Willie Cole in his Express Newark studio
Irina Mason

The New York Times featured the work of Express Newark artist-in-residence Willie Cole and an exhibition called "Perceptual Engineering,'' which features pieces by RU-N students and was curated by artist and instructor Colleen Gutwein O'Neill,  Both exhibitions are on display at Express Newark as part of its year-long programming exploring the theme of "Aliveness.''

With the help of Rutgers-Newark students and city residents, Cole made chandelier-like pieces from thousands of plastic water bottles, which now hang in the landmark Hahne building. Find the full story here. Below is an excerpt:

"The artist Willie Cole has created two colossal new sculptures and generated a provocative group exhibition stemming from an unusual open call asking artists to transform objects destined for landfill into something imaginative and new.

The resulting works are in two exhibitions on view at Express Newark, the center for socially engaged art and design affiliated with Rutgers University — Newark, where Cole, 68, is an artist in residence. They speak to his longtime practice of using ready-made objects as raw materials, and his preoccupation with environmental crises."

Also part of “Aliveness” are video installations curated by Farrah Rahaman called “Things We Do in the Dark: Cinematic Experiments in Kinship.’’ It features more than twenty video-based collaborations by Black and Indigenous artists, located on all three floors of Express Newark, exploring racial solidarity, Black radical protest, and communal healing.