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Morris Museum Events

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Legacy in Clay: Contemporary American Indian Pottery
March 22 – September 28, 2014

The Morris Museum is pleased to announce that the new exhibition, Legacy in Clay: Contemporary American Indian Pottery, will be on view from March 22 through September 28, 2014.

Featuring more than fifty objects, Legacy in Clay celebrates the recent gift of the Sonia W. and Victor J. Bauer pottery collection to the Morris Museum. The works on display will include bowls, pots, and jars dating from 1993-2008. The exhibition will explore the forms, designs, and methods that contemporary potters have created with inspiration from ancient customs. A broad range of Hopi, Laguna, Acoma, Santa Clara and Navajo traditions will be represented.

Sonia and Victor Bauer have been collecting contemporary American Indian pottery since the late 1980s. In a statement, the Bauers said, “We hope that [through this exhibition] you will share our enjoyment, and perhaps even absorb a little of the culture of the Southwest Pueblo Indians.” Their collection came to the Morris Museum as a gift in 2013.

Legacy in Clay will include works by Iris Youvella Nampeyo and Rayvin Nampeyo, descendents of the well-known Hopi potter Iris Nampeyo (c. 1860 – 1942). Also on view will be objects by Jody and Polly Rose Folwell, Al Qoyawayma, Dorothy Torivio, Damian Toya, and Nancy Youngblood. In addition, the exhibition will feature an exquisite selection of contemporary Kachina Dolls carved from cottonwood by highly skilled Hopi artists to represent various spirits of their religion. Works by Lauren Phillips and Orin Poley, among others will be included.

According to Executive Director Linda Moore, “The delicate shapes and detailed designs represented in the Bauer collection demonstrate incredible craftsmanship and are a wonderful addition to the Museum’s permanent collection of American Indian art and artifacts.”


The Slow Art of Quiltmaking

June 24 – August 16, 2014

The Morris Museum is pleased to present this exhibition of art quilts created by four internationally renown artists: Katherine Knauer, Paula Nadelstern, Amy Orr, and Robin Schwalb. The tongue-in-check title of the exhibit, Semper Tedium, celebrates the ritualistic act of creation for its own sake, a laborious and satisfying process.

Each of the four artists in this exhibition has spent decades evolving a unique voice and vision centered on craftsmanship and creation. Katherine Knauer designs and prints fabrics on a specific theme, often environmental or political issues, and combines them into tradition-based quilt design. Paula Nadelstern explores in depth the symmetry of kaleidoscopes in geometry and expressively detailed color. Amy Orr creates sculptural wall pieces from repurposed post-consumer materials referencing traditional quilt patterns. Robin Schwalb focuses on language and images from her travels incorporating meticulously hand-stenciled texts and humorous visual responses to contemporary events.

The artists featured in the exhibition have met twice a year for the past decade. These cherished, multi-week, artist retreats reinforced the artists’ shared dedication to integrity of construction and pursuit of unique personal visions, in spite of societal pressure to work faster and produce more.

control and spontaneity to spark something unexpected. Often effects more wonderful than I imagined occur, making me both the one who makes the magic and the one who is surprised.

Amy Orr: I make quilts from a pallet of post-consumer materials including twist ties, chicken bones, shattered auto glass, junk mail and credit cards. I am drawn to commonplace artifacts for their abundance, color and inherent content. Process and excess drive my collection of materials and art-making rituals as I assemble non-traditional materials into traditional quilt compositions. I anchoring the found materials with excessive stitching, beading and embellishment. In a culture of speed, My work takes an inordinate amount of time to complete. For several years I have been working with plastic cards. I collect them like a quilter collects fabric squares. This includes credit cards, ID cards, health insurance, gift, membership and special offers. I am attracted to their color, abundance and intrinsic content. These seductive color chips hold information and personal stories. I cut them up in order to obscure personal information; then reassemble the plastic fragments into lush patterned surfaces creating quilts, sculpture, jewelry and graphic compositions.

Robin Schwalb: I explore a number of themes in my graphic quilts and fabric collages. I am particularly interested in the rich variety of the written word, the urban environment, and clothing mannequins. A wry sense of humor informs my choice of image and text, which are manipulated and combined for maximum visual impact. I use a variety of surface design techniques including photo silkscreen printing, stencilling, painting, and elaborate appliqué.

OKLAHOMA Opens at the Bickford Theatre

August 1 – August 10, 2014

The Bickford Theatre at the Morris Museum in conjunction with the Algonquin Arts Center of Manasquan and the News Jersey Youth Theatre will present the American classic musical OKLAHOMA, August 1 through August 10, 2014.

“Oklahoma!,” Rodgers & Hammerstein's first collaboration remains, in many ways, their most innovative, having set the standards and established the rules of musical theatre still being followed today. Set in Oklahoma territory just after the turn of the century, the high-spirited rivalry between the local farmers and cowboys provides the colorful background against which Curly, a handsome cowboy, and Laurey, a winsome farm girl, Will Parker, a fun-loving steer roper and Ado Annie, a love-hungry flirt play out their love stories. They succeed in making new lives together in what will be a brand-new state building up to the ultimate climax, the triumphant “OKLAHOMA!” Songs include “People Will Say We’re in Love,” “I Cain’t Say No,” “The Surrey With the Fringe on Top,” and “Out of My Dreams.”

The Rodgers and Hammerstein musical will be directed by Cynthia Meryl who last year directed the summer theatre production of WEST SIDE STORY at the Morris Museum’s Bickford Theatre. The Music Director is Matthew Webb who serves as the Director of Music at the Presbyterian Church in Morristown, NJ and the choreographer is Sherry Alban who is a member of the dance faculty at Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers.

Starring in “Oklahoma!” are talented young actors from across the state including Mason Kugelman from Rumson as Curly, Erica Morreale from Cranford as Laurey, Branden Mangan as Andrew Carnes and Ariel Schwarzer as Ali Hakim, both from West Orange, Kaitlin Quann from Randolph as Kate, Samantha Tropper from Union as Ado Annie and Andrew Martinez from Morristown as Jud

Tickets may be purchased by phone at (973) 971-3706, or in person at the Bickford Theatre box office. The Bickford Theatre is conveniently located within the Morris Museum, 6 Normandy Heights Road in Morristown, NJ, and offers free parking and full accessibility. Box Office hours for phone sales are Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Walk-up hours are Wednesday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

About the Bickford Theatre

The Bickford Theatre is a professional theater that produces and presents year-round entertainment, including a Main Stage Series, two Children’s Theatre series, a Jazz Showcase and many other special concerts and performances. Artistic Director Eric Hafen celebrates his fourteenth anniversary this season.

The theatre is an Equity Member Theatre of the New Jersey Theatre Alliance, a not-for-profit organization of 30 professional theatres throughout the state, and works in conjunction with Actors' Equity Association (AEA) and the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society (SDC). From its beginnings in 1994 to the present, tens of thousands of theater-goers from across the tri-state area have enjoyed the Bickford Theatre’s many entertaining and diversified offerings in theatre, music and dance. The Bickford Theatre is conveniently located within the Morris Museum and offers free parking and full accessibility. Box Office hours for phone sales are Monday through Friday, 10:00am to 5:00pm. Walk-up hours are Tuesday through Friday, 11:00am to 5:00pm.

Morris Museum Launches New Exhibition Website

Jersey Rocks: A History of Rock & Roll in the Garden State

The Morris Museum is pleased to announce that it has launched a new website,, based on the ground breaking 2011 exhibition Jersey Rocks: A History of Rock & Roll in the Garden State.

The website explores the pivotal role played by the state of New Jersey in the development of Rock and Roll. The site includes major sections on the genre’s roots, rise, golden age, and evolution in the 1950’s, 60’s, 70’s and beyond. Visitors will also find photographs of the exhibition, musical excerpts, quotes and quizzes. Additionally, three video components are also included on the website: a montage of performers, a video exploring the roots of Rock and Roll in New Jersey, and a trailer for the documentary The Last Bastions of Rock, written and directed by Fritch Clark.

Funding for the creation of the website was generously provided by a grant from the Morris County Heritage Commission.

“Through this online resource, the Morris Museum is thrilled to be able to make New Jersey’s contributions to the development and evolution of Rock and Roll accessible to a broad audience.” said Linda Moore, Executive Director of the Museum.

The Jersey Rocks: A History of Rock & Roll in the Garden State exhibition was organized by the Morris Museum and was on view from May 5 through September 14, 2011. The exhibition was conceived by Curator Ellen M. Snyder-Grenier with the assistance of Claudia Ocello, who served as the Project Coordinator.

Developed by Avion Technology, Inc., this is the first professionally designed site for the Museum. The production of the website was coordinated by Museum Partners Consulting, LLC.

About the Morris MuseumCelebrating 100 years, the Morris Museum is an award-winning, community-based arts and cultural institution which serves the public through high caliber exhibitions in the arts, sciences and humanities. The Museum also offers educational programs, family events, and is home to the Bickford Theatre and its wide range of performing arts offerings. Continuously serving the public since 1913, the Morris Museum has been designated a Major Arts Institution and has received the New Jersey State Council on the Arts’ Citation of Excellence, among other awards. The first museum in New Jersey to be accredited, the Morris Museum was re-accredited in 2013 by the American Alliance of Museums.

The Morris Museum is a Blue Star Museum, offering free admission to active duty military personnel and their families, from Memorial Day to Labor Day.

The Museum is located at 6 Normandy Heights Road (at the corner of Columbia Turnpike) in Morristown, NJ, and is open Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, 11:00am to 5:00pm and Sunday, 12:00 to 5:00pm. In addition, the Museum is open evenings from 5:00 to 8:00pm on the second and third Thursday of the month. Admission to the museum is $10 for adults and $7 for children, students and senior citizens. Admission is always free for Museum members and is free to the public every second and third Thursday of the month between 4:00 and 8:00pm. For more information, call (973) 971-3700, or visit

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