Topic: ART NEWS
Beloved Trenton,’ a Photo Exhibit
by Habiyb Ali Shu'Aib
The Gallery at JKC, Mercer County Community College’s (MCCC’s) new exhibit space in downtown Trenton, is proud to present “Beloved Trenton” by photographer Habiyb Ali Shu'Aib (beloved1). The show runs from Monday, June 19 to Monday, July 17. A Reception and Artist’s Talk takes place Friday, June 23, from 5 to 8 p.m., with the talk to start at 5:30 p.m.
The Gallery is located in Trenton Hall at 137 North Broad Street (across the street from the James Kerney Building). Gallery hours are Tuesdays, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesdays, noon to 6 p.m., and Thursdays, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Shu'Aib was born and raised in Trenton. At age 9 his parents gave him a disposable camera, which ignited his love for photography and photographing the city he calls home.
According to JKC Gallery Director Michael Chovan-Dalton, coordinator of the MCCC Photography and Digital Imaging program, he selected to showcase Habiyb’s work because “he shows us Trenton as home as opposed to Trenton as problems, which is often how photographers depict the city. He fits well with the goal of the gallery to be both an opportunity for up-and-coming photographers and a destination for more established photographers. Habiyb is part of the vibrancy of the Trenton art scene that the gallery and I am excited to be a part of,” Chovan-Dalton said.
Chovan-Dalton notes that Shu'Aib's photographs depict Trenton with honesty, affection, familiarity and curiosity.
“Trenton can be a complicated place to describe because it is a city that struggles with its identity and it is perceived differently by those who only know it through the media, by those who work here but live elsewhere, by those who left here, by those who moved here, and by those who never left,” Chovan-Dalton said, adding that Shu’Aib’s work reads like a journal about the place he grew up.
“The viewer, in turn, is given an experience that may reflect our own perceptions of Trenton but also remind us of something familiar and beloved in our own travels,” he said.
Shu’Aib’s work has been featured regularly around the area in recent years: Trenton’s Art All Night and Art All Day, Trenton 365 Show (WIMG 1300), Soul of The Message with SAGE Coalition at Casa Cultura Gallery, Trenton Makes at Capital Health Medical Center, I See Storytellers Exhibit at Hopewell Valley Vineyards, and, most recently, the Anthracite Fields Art Exhibition at Roebling Wire Works.
For more information, visit www.mccc.edu/JKCgallery.