Visual Arts Center of New Jersey  - Free programs and Events this October


The Visual Arts Center of New Jersey is planning a series of free programs and events this October related to fall exhibitions and in honor of Arts & Humanities month. Several of the programs will examine racial issues in the Garden State.

A recipient of a grant award from the New Jersey Council for the Humanities (NJCH), the exhibition Casey Ruble: Everything That Rises features a series of small-scale paper collages, depicting two types of sites in New Jersey: former safe houses on the Underground Railroad, and locations where race riots have broken out. NJCH’s Executive Director, Dr. Briann Greenfield, and Chair Linda Morgan were in attendance at the exhibition opening on September 20 along with Congressman Leonard Lance. The exhibition is on view through January 17, 2016.

On October 15 at 7pm, a book signing and reading with Jam on the Vine author Lashonda Barnett will be held at the Art Center. Her debut novel is an unflinching historical tale that looks at the legacy of Jim Crow in Texas. It’s the story of Ivoe Williams and her ambition to start the country’s first female-run African American newspaper. Barnett’s book brings to mind the work of Alice Walker and Toni Morrison. Her essay is featured in the Casey Ruble: Everything That Rises exhibition catalog.

The theme of this season’s Talking Pictures Film Series explores the depiction of race in American cinema. Beginning on October 7 at 7pm, the Art Center will screen, To Kill a Mockingbird, followed by The Help on October 14 and Do the Right Thing on October 21. Film expert Kara Shivers from Rutgers University will lead a discussion after each film. An Artist Talk with Casey Ruble and Don Porcaro will take place on October 18 at 2pm. All ages are welcome.

Finally, on October 27, the Art Center will celebrate with the Feast for the Arts Benefit, celebrating 10 years of the Access to Art Campaign, with proceeds supporting the Art Center’s award-winning exhibition program and educational outreach initiatives. Tickets and information are available at or by calling 908.273.9121.

About the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey

For more than 80 years, the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey has been exclusively dedicated to viewing, making and learning about contemporary art. Recognized as a leading non-profit arts organization by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, the Art Center’s renowned studio school, acclaimed exhibitions, and educational outreach initiatives serve thousands of youth, families, seniors and people with special needs every year.