Sunday, March 09, 2008

Beauty, Flower, Poem Review

’Beauty Flower Poem’ opens at Northumberland County Career and Arts Center
Category: Art and Photography
'Beauty Flower Poem' opens at Northumberland County Career and Arts Center
beautyflowerpoem's photo from 3/9/08

SHAMOKIN — Abstract. Healing. Iconic. Those are just a few words used to describe "Beauty Flower Poem," Kathy Dobash's exhibit that opened at the Northumberland County Career and Arts Center Fine Art Gallery Friday night.

"The colors are so ... I don't have the word for it," said Mary Rea Pipa, of Elysburg, a long-time friend of the artist.

Dobash has been creating art for most of her life.

"Ever since I was a little girl," Dobash said with an impish smile. "I always scribbled."

Dobash has an art degree and an art education degree from Penn State. She taught art for Millville and Southern Columbia Area school districts. She now gives private art lessons at her studio in Hazleton.

Dobash's studio is in the Markle Building on

Broad Street. The building, and the restoration it is undergoing, is a great inspiration to Dobash.

"It's from a restoration of the ceiling," Dobash said, pointing to a plaster flower in one of her relief sculptures. Pieces from the restoration have found their way into all of the pieces on display at the arts center.

"I salvaged everything I could," Dobash said.

The artwork inspires viewers in return.

"It's almost like a religious or iconic piece," said Chet Davis, art gallery director. "This is different besides traditional mediums."

Most of Dobash's pieces also feature a woman in motion, she added.

The largest piece in Dobash's exhibit is called "Arms Thrown Up to the Sky." It is a lifesize form of a woman made of wire, plaster, ribbons, torn clothes, paint and other items. Dobash put plenty of detail in the colors and textures, but the figure's face is blank.

"The face is ambiguous on purpose. I want people to think about emotion in art," Dobash said.

The echo of pattern, color and subject were not lost on visitors to Friday's opening reception.

"I'm amazed at how she carries the motif in everything," said Connie Martini, of Coal Township.

Dobash also displayed two community projects. Students and members of the Hazleton community created artwork based on a theme such as "autumn" or "First Night." Dobash took the work and created a collage of the images.

"Autumn Landscape Project" included paintings done by Dobash's mother, Marie Dobash, who died in May.

"I was her caretaker, and to keep her busy, I had her painting," Dobash said.

Artwork, community and healing work together in Dobash's art.

She created a relief sculpture that will be raffled to raise money for American Cancer Society Greater Hazleton Area Unit. Tickets are $10 and are available at the exhibit or by calling 459-1212, option 3, extension 3332, or by e-mailing or The raffle date has not been set, but will occur in April.

"This is beautiful; she's doing a lot of hard work," Pipa said.

"Beauty Flower Poem" will be at the Northumberland County Career and Art Center Fine Art Gallery through April 18. The gallery i
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