Medina Journal-Register — MIDDLEPORT — Medina native Joe Waszak is the latest artist to have his work featured at the Lamp Lighter Gallery & Studio, an occasion that was celebrated for both his talent and the growth of the local arts community.
Waszak’s work is inspired by the idea that photography captures the frozen moments in time that go unnoticed each day. After taking photographs of bleak, icy scenes last winter, Waszak said he looked back into his older work to find other pieces driven by the same theme.
“I like to work with black and white abstractions,” explained Waszak, a Medina High School and SUNY Cortland graduate. “It all about the strange angles, the things that people wouldn’t take a second look at.”
An opening reception for Waszak’s “Particles & Waves” gallery exhibition attracted a large and appreciative crowd to the Main Street arts space Friday. The new exhibit runs through the end of March and starts a new season of events at the gallery.
“I was blown away,” Waszak said Tuesday of the big reaction to the event. “I never expected a turnout like that ... it was a scene.”
Waszak’s work was the focal point Friday, but the euphoria was shared by the gallery’s diverse group of resident artists, whose works fill the year-old studio. The Lamp Lighter opened last March in a vacant storefront in the heart of Middleport’s downtown, bringing together the efforts of artists from communities along the canal.
“It’s a nice combination of a gallery and a studio,” Dan Seaman, who owns the gallery and traded credit for the idea with artist Cindy Meal. “We’re pleased with how it’s developed ... it’s amazing how much local talent there is.”
Lamp Lighter artists Jennifer Scott, Carol and Cindy Meal, Laura Terranova-Hamilton, Erica Joan Wanecski and Paul Facklam have brought their diverse artistic disciplines to the shared space. While their work and family lives keep the studio from being open on a regular schedule, the artists make sure to gather together to work alongside one another as often as possible.