POUGHKEEPSIE, NY — Beginning in the mid-1990s, sculptor Barbara Segal has been a catalyst for reviving the Yonkers, New York urban landscape through public art projects, including a 2001 commission from the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA). In the multi-media exhibit "Muhheakantuck: Changing River, Changing Cities," Segal, local artist Franc Palaia, and Vassar senior Jessica Jacobson will explore public art efforts in Yonkers and Poughkeepsie, as case studies of cities in different stages of redevelopment and renovation.
"Muhheakantuck: Changing River, Changing Cities," whose title is inspired by the Native American name for the Hudson River, will be exhibited Monday, February 13 through Friday, March 10, in the James W. Palmer Gallery of the College Center, with an artists' reception on February 13 from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Both events are free and open to the public.
"Our goal is to get people to think about the Hudson River, its relationship to the communities of the Hudson Valley, and how to improve quality of life issues through the use of public art in other Hudson Valley communities," said Segal. The exhibit will feature:
- Five 8-foot sections of the models for Segal's "Muhheakantuck, River That Flows Two Ways," two 70-foot sculptures installed at the Yonkers train station in 2004, on commission from the MTA's Arts for Transit program. The presence of the full-scale model in the exhibition emphasizes the process of making public art, a focus of the show.
- Four short films by Jessica Jacobson, including three on the fabrication and installation of the Muhheakantuck sculpture, and a fourth on the emerging redevelopment role of art in downtown Poughkeepsie.
- Photographic timelines organized by Palaia (Poughkeepsie) and Segal (Yonkers) of public art and redevelopment in their respective communities.
For gallery hours, or to arrange accommodations for people with disabilities, call the Office of Campus Activities at (845) 437-5370. Vassar College is a highly selective, coeducational, independent, residential liberal arts college founded in 1861.