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Brooklyn-based artisans and artists to exhibit at Brooklyn Museum’s Fine Art Craft Show

October 26, 2016 Brooklyn Daily Eagle
“Passage,” Ari Gradus, acrylic, 26-by-34 inches, Park Slope. Image courtesy of American Art Marketing
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Six artisans and one artist from Park Slope, Fort Greene, Ditmas Park, Bedford-Stuyvesant, Gowanus, Bay Ridge and Bushwick will exhibit their jewelry, furniture, fine art and pottery along with 83 others at the fourth American Fine Craft Show at the Brooklyn Museum on Nov. 19-20. Timed for holiday shopping, visitors may also enjoy both current and long-term exhibitions at the museum. The show is produced and curated by An American Craftsman Galleries.

Five exhibitors are new to the show:

  • Bedford-Stuyvesant jewelry designer Sonja Fries, who uses recycled metals and diamonds to produce her products by hand, says her jewelry “harkens back to my upbringing in rural Germany, combining elements of angular German geometry and European minimalism with soft, feminine features … Much like an architect, I set out with a unique vision, carefully select my materials, design a piece and then start constructing, layer by layer.”

  • Furniture maker Stefan Rurak, whose studio is in Bushwick, describes his work as “defying conventional boundaries while merging modern conceptual design with time-honored craftsmanship built to span generations.”

  • Ari Gradus, whose paintings depict American and European scenes at the turn of the century in a naive, colorful style, works in Park Slope. He also lives and paints in Israel, where he was born in a small village.

  • CJ Segal-Isaacson of The Hungry Cat Café Jewelry in Ditmas Park makes original designs from gems and precious metal, as well as cast silver. “Our jewelry is all about our customers. We enjoy customizing our designs to suit and enhance each, to alter colors, stones and length,” she says.  

  • Influenced by the natural world, Alex Hossick creates jewelry in her Bay Ridge studio that embodies organic forms and intricate textures evident in all living organisms. Her artistic expression is achieved through hand carving and 3-D computer modeling. Vivid colors, corals of the sea and the perfection of the urchin have become her muse.

Brooklyn artisans returning to the exhibition include:

  • Jeweler Christine Mackellar specializes in natural forms — leaves, blossoms and twigs — for her bracelets, earrings, necklaces, pins and rings that she designs and produces in her jewelry studio in Gowanus. Her jewelry is handcrafted at the bench from gold and silver using time-honored techniques.

  • Fort Greene-based potter Ming Yuen-Schat, of Mings Monsters, hand-shapes — usually on the wheel — then alters each piece. “As an artistic form, wabi-sabi embraces that which is imperfect, asymmetrical and deliberately crude, which is diametrically opposed to the influence of commercialized modernism which values slick, high-tech, machine-made objects and considers imperfection to be a defect,” he says.  

For more information about the American Fine Craft Show at Brooklyn Museum, visit

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