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‘Journey On!’ Opening reception for Meyer Sherman exhibit is Thursday

By Susan Lee, for Center for Faith & the Arts

Opening reception for Meyer Sherman, Artist is at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 22 at Center for Faith and the Arts, located at 207 W. Harrison St. Entry is from the back parking lot of Haven Lutheran Church. The reception is free and open to the public.

Years ago, Barnet Sherman began searching among scattered links in his family’s heritage. Sifting through childhood memories and family lore, he connected what was known with each newly emerging clue.

In tracing his great grandfather’s journey from Russia to the New World, he also traced the route of thousands of Jews, likewise fleeing harsh conditions forced upon them by Czar Nicholas II. Most details of his family’s journey are lost to time, but the plight of his family echoes the arduous trek of many.

Barnet’s search ultimately came to rest in a legacy that he is committed to preserving well into the future. He continues to explore his individual heritage and identity in the gathering and presenting his father’s artwork.” It’s an immigrant’s story,  the struggle to overcome obstacles, to manifest a vision. In these ways it belongs to us all. And that story continues today in the remembered life and artwork of Meyer Sherman.”

The first baby to be born in New York City on Jan. 1, 1929, Meyer Sherman’s life was to complete the long journey toward prosperity and religious freedom begun in the late 1800s by his grandfather, Barnet’s namesake.

Raised amidst the sights and sounds of Brooklyn’s Russian Jewish tenements during the Great Depression, the Promised Land was still far from sight. Despite the odds, Sherman attained art degrees from Kansas State University, New York University and Staffordshire Institute of Technology.

He maintained a prolific career, both as an artist and an art educator. Filled as most lives are, with struggles and strokes of luck, Meyer Sherman’s life spanned 84 years and shared experiences common to many men of his era. Military service, an education funded by the GI Bill and post-war U.S. economic prosperity were tempered by his ethnic heritage and humble beginnings. Sherman’s less than common response to these experiences was his dedication to becoming a professional artist and to living artfully. The significant volume of images and ceramic pieces he created attests to central role developing his talents and making art played throughout his life.

“Meyer Sherman, Artist” chronicles his life long passion for creating art. It is on display Octo. 22 through Nov. 22 at Center for Faith and the Arts. The collection represents one man’s ongoing pursuit of meaning. Seeing the world uniquely, the artist invites the viewer to do the same.

One man’s search, yet perhaps Everyman’s task. This quest is one we each may pursue. To create and re-create the ever changing ground on which we stand.

A glimpse of what’s on offer: Self-perception filtered through time, distilled or perhaps shaken by details newly revealed awaits. Falling in and out of focus as the lens moves, ourselves as subject, shift and re-form. Engaged through one’s personal heritage and perspective, the image is made anew. As is the viewer, an emerging version of one’s becoming, by virtue of our journey thus far, even as we journey on.

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