LINCROFT, NJ - An exciting new venue for artists is opening up in Monmouth County. The first Autumn Art Festival at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Monmouth County (UUCMC) will feature 15 local artists from a broad spectrum of disciplines including painters, photographers, potters, jewelers, fiber artist and a mosaic artist.

UUCMC member Angie Morfogen, has been the guiding force and coordinator of the event. She explained that artists in the congregation having been selling their art during a coffee hour in December for the past four or five years. When a local artist and UUCMC member approached the Aesthetics Committee about having a larger show, open to the public as well as non-member artists, the Aesthetics Committee agreed.

A Colts Neck resident, Morfogen said her vision for the show is to provide a place to celebrate art made in this state and this area.

“All of the art is original and any functional items are original designs, handmade, and of a very high quality. The show's format will allow people to meet the artists and ask questions about the work.”

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An artist herself, Morfogen has been making jewelry since the 1980s, fabricating and casting silver. In 1995, she began studying pottery at Thompson Park Creative Arts Center in Middletown.

“I  took a handbuilding class and then a workshop with Louis Mendez, who taught Spanish handbuilding techniques. Part of the workshop was an introduction to making masks, making original stamps in clay of symbols, both cultural as well as individual symbols.

Morfogen began creating masks. “The masks I make are more of a portrait. I use symbols to convey the interior mind or emotions of the person, rather than a mask, something hiding the truth,” she said.

Among the artist that will be on hand to discuss their work will be  Morfogen, who will show her original and compeling masks, Linda DeNicola, a mixed media painter, Elaine Macina, who paints vivid abstracts, Jack Ives and Terry Grewen, both painters, Bob Goldberg and Lana Kessler, both potters and Fred Loeser, Amy Fischer and Lisa Arcoleo, photographers. In addition, Mindi Arcoleo and Anne Milling will display their jewelry, Patricia Brennan and friends will have knitted and crocheted items for sale and Stacey Abate will display her mosaics.

“It’s a wonderful thing to support local creative artists,” Morfogen said.

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As with any festival, people will have an opportunity to purchase lunch or refreshments at the Arts Cafe, she added.

The colorful and original art works will be on display at the UUCMC Meeting House, 1475 West Front St., Lincroft, on Nov. 13 between 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Please check the UUCMC (uucmc.org) web site for directions or call 732/747-0707.