Freedom to Love:
A multi-artist showcase of love in its many forms
February 4 – 28, 2019
The Great Room Gallery | Gallery Hours: Tue. – Thr., 3:00 – 6:00p
New Haven Pride Center, 84 Orange Street, New Haven
Freedom to Love is a multi-artist showcase of visual works by LGBTQ+ artists depicting the vast diversity of forms and mediums that love takes. In a time where the very right to love someone can be debated in public forum, it is important to remember that love is beautiful.
Featuring the works of 11 Connecticut LGBTQ+ artists, Freedom to Love is celebratory and political. Freedom to Love is curated by Patrick J Dunn.
About the Artists
Fred Verillo is also included in this exhibition but no photo or bio was provided.
Ray started as a New Haven based printmaker working primarily with photo-etching. Since that start photography has been central to his work. When digital photography and programs like Photoshop were introduced to artists and then the public the transition from film, acid, metal to digital cameras and computers was seamless. For several years his work has been influenced by his time spent in Guatemala. With its crafts-based texture, color, and compositional abstractions seen in weavings, paintings, sculptures, he notes it is impossible to move through Guatemala without being dazzled by its peoples’ artistry and the Maya and Spanish Colonial cultural influences. Much like the Albers’ being influenced with Mexican Mayan art/crafts Ray has been influenced by the inventiveness of the indigenous peoples’ work.
New Haven CT based Designer, Sue Czark (She/Her), has been an artist for as long as she can remember, although majority of her time, since the 1980s, has been spent as a graphic designer. Czark lived in Bridgeport and exhibited in the City Lights Gallery, particularly the same-sex galleries. She hopes that this exhibit will be something that members of the LGBTQ+ community can relate to and use it to spark discussion.
Arienne has been creating photographs for a little over 25 years. She has shot from below sea level, snorkeling with sea lions in the Galapagos, to the ruins of Machu Picchu at almost 8,000 feet. On the spur of the moment in 2009, she decided to go to the Obama Inauguration. It was so amazing that eight years later she went to the Trump Inauguration to compare experiences. Holding a camera gave Arienne a sense of empowerment that she didn’t otherwise possess, allowing her to move through the thick crowds with ease. The protesters suddenly became much more interesting to follow than the supporters. She spent hours photographing the various groups of protesters outside of the gates to the Inauguration area and then attended the Women’s March the next day as well as a “Not My President’s Day” protest in New York City in February. She believes that documenting these protests will be an important reminder for future generations that “the people united will never be defeated” (César Chávez).
Don is a Connecticut artist who lives here in New Haven. Most of his work features oceans and seascapes from his time working on commercial ships as a Third Mate. His work is often surreal and moody, much like the sunsets he often paints. He is a self taught oil painter, having received his BS in Marine Business and Commerce from SUNY Maritime.
You can view more of his work at www.newhavenoilpainting.com
Tony Ferraiolo is a Life Coach who has dedicated himself to promoting competent and respectful health care for the transgender community by educating providers, advocating on behalf of patients, and training educators on providing a safe and respectful space for transgender children in a school environment. Tony is also the subject of the award-winning documentary A Self-Made Man and the author of the book series Artistic Expressions of Transgender Youth.
Beck is a queer & non-binary tattoo artist, illustrator and crafter residing in New Haven, CT. They have been working at Body Art & Soul Tattoo since February of 2018, where they have found a spiritual significance in the art of tattooing. Through their work, Beck aims to illustrate the profundity of simplicity, to highlight the importance of identity while more deeply understanding their own in the process, and to share tender moments of personal and collective joy, sorrow, and everything in between. Beck’s work can be found on Instagram @thestrangestplaces or The Strangest Places by Beck on Facebook.
Maxwell (they/their) is a young Connecticut native nonbinary artist living in Monroe. They first discovered their love of art after graduating high school when they saw the film , “ Basquiat”. They have since over the years taken a liking to the works by Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, and Ernst Ludwig Kirchner. They considers themselves an expressionist more than anything and prefers digital art because it feels more suited for the social media age.
Ricky Mestre is a multimedia artist out of the Fairfiled County area of Connecticut. He has worked primarily out of the Connecticut and Metro New York areas. Throughout the years he has exhibited his work in various galleries and museums. His influences come from his Puerto Rican culture and urban environment.
Many of his pieces also contain LGBTQ themes and issues since he is heavily involved in fighting causes and charities in that community. Ricky received his Bachelor’s degree in Illustration from the University of Bridgeport in Connecticut. Aside from being a curator at the City Lights Gallery in Bridgeport, he also works in programming at Sound View Community Media Inc. where he has also produced his own television show and many other community projects.
You can view more about Ricky and his work on his website: www.rickymestre.com
Sarah is a down to earth artsy girl who loves New Haven as much as her arts and crafts. She spends her free time frequenting New Haven coffee shops like Jo Jo’s and drawing in her sketch pad. She considers herself very spiritual and emotional. She feels everything which has its perks but also setbacks. But it’s perks for her include creating art and poetry that she thinks is easier to create when she feels so intensely. As for resume stuff, she graduated with a bachelor’s in Journalism from Eastern Michigan University and have also self-published a few books.
Hailed originally from Japan, Nao is a non-binary trans artist who lives and has worked at Body Art and Soul Tattoos in New Haven since 2017. While art has always been their means for self-exploration and communication, since 2013 Nao has been mainly focusing on tattooing as a medium of creation. They strongly believe in the transformative power of tattooing and have been very grateful to participate in people’s process of self-empowerment and shaping of their identity through art.
Nao’s work can be found on Instagram @naotattoos