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21 September 2011

Hispanic Heritage exhibit at HACC features vibrant artwork, whimsical travel art, beautiful handcrafted fused-glass jewelry

GETTYSBURG – Vibrant paintings, whimsical travel art and colorful chairs, and hand-fused glass jewelry are among the works of three local artists on display through Oct. 21 in recognition of Hispanic Heritage Month at the Gettysburg Campus of HACC, Central Pennsylvania’s Community College.
The artwork can also be viewed during campus hours: 7:30 a.m.-9:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday and 7:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday. The exhibit and celebration are free and open to the community.
The exhibit will be featured during the annual Hispanic Heritage Celebration at the campus from 6-8:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 14.
In the gallery hallway are expressionist oils on wood and canvas by Liliana Arias of York Springs, a native of Colombia, South America; and Erin Brown of Orrtanna, whose acrylic, pen and ink, gouache artwork reflects “Travel Wherever You Are.” Brown also has painted chairs on display in the hallway and fireplace lounge.
In the display case in the library, handcrafted fused-glass jewelry with multi-layers and detailed work are the creation of Jan Hughes of Shippensburg, a fused-glass artist and lamp worker.
Arias, the owner of Gallery Lili-Rosa in York Springs, chose her style to “express the passion for life” and “the culture that I came from.” She studied under two Columbian masters, expressionism with Alejandro Obregon and abstract expressionism with Marzipan Echavarria. “I love expressionism because of the spontaneity it affords and the freedom to convey how I feel about the subject,” Arias said.
“Art is constantly breaking the tremendous barriers of our cultures,” she said. “It opens our hearts to quiet places of beauty and wonder.”
Ever since Brown traveled to Rome while in art school, she has learned the value of drawing what she sees in a sketchbook wherever she may be visiting. “I paint from my imagination and memory places I’ve been to or would like to visit,” she said.
A graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, Brown as a child often visited her grandparents in Fairfield. After a decade-long career with American Greetings in Cleveland, Ohio, she decided to reconnect with family and launch a freelance career.
Then she discovered a love for teaching and completed a master’s of teaching program at Mount St. Mary’s. She is certified to teach art in Pennsylvania and Maryland.
Hughes layers glass with minerals, frits and milliflori to design each piece of jewelry and then kiln fires the pieces multiple times to get the desired effect. “Opening my kiln each time is like Christmas; a surprise to see the final piece,” said Hughes, who teaches at her home and Rainbow Vision Store in Harrisburg.
“The glass used in some of my jewelry is called dichroic glass. The colors are a result of thin layers of metal oxides within each piece,” she explained. “The light is bent as it enters the glass and returns to the eye as brilliant color.”
Lamp working was not being done on the East Coast when she started working in the medium seven years ago, so she had to improvise and find her own supplies. Now, however, stained glass stores have the supplies.
HACC’s Gettysburg Campus is at 731 Old Harrisburg Road, near Weis Markets and Adams County National Bank. For more information, call 337-3855.

Gettysburg Campus, 717-337-3855

Pamilla Saylor
Office of College Advancement, HACC

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