Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Dioramas in Miniature

Independence Hall, Philadelphia, PA - 1.25 inches across
Matthew Pleva

Heidi Abrams and Matthew Pleva
Artist Genes



to Grandson

My mother Matilda Nimke is an artist. As a teen in    the 1940s she opted to attend a special commercial high school in Manhattan, the School of Industrial Arts. The program was designed to train artists and craftspeople whose skills would be an important resource for the businesses on 7th Avenue, the garment district of New York. My mother, inspired by her aunt and many friends who worked for designers, chose to pursue fashion design. By 1947 she was the mother of two and that dream faded away. Beginning in the 1963 Mom began painting again and taking classes, especially at the Brooklyn Museum.

Here are some of my mother's paintings. She discovered her gift for watercolor, much to our delight. Today Mom has put the paint brushes aside. I used to tell her to "clean less and paint more". Fortunately she did paint more. Her grandchildren and great-grandchildren will all eventually enjoy looking at her work in their own homes.

In turn I have dabbled here and there. A bit of drawing and painting was overwhelmed by work in the needle arts. Mom exposed us early to all kinds of art and craft media as well as needlework. Many family members worked in the garment industry; all the women sewed; many did knitting and crocheting of the most elaborate kind.


Now it is my son Matthew (the middle one) who is making his way through the art world with more training than his grandmother or mother every had (BFA - SUNY Purchase). He also has much more imagination than most people. Here is a Photobucket Slide Show  of his most recent gallery show at the Art Riot, the establishment that he and his lovely lady Heidi Abrams (and greatest support) have created on John Street, uptown Kingston, NY.
Scenes of Kingston
 top - home
middle - Old Dutch Church
foreground - Henry Hudson's Half Moon 

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