July 23, 2021

Barron Arts Center in N.J. features Ukrainian embroidery and folk art


WOODBRIDGE, N.J. – The Barron Arts Center presents “Textiles: Reimagining New Jersey,” a multi-faceted arts series that explores the “common threads” of the cultural landscape of the United States of America.

Among the scheduled exhibits are “Decorative Folk Art of Ukraine,” on display from July 1 through August 27, featuring the collection of Yuri Mischenko and Natalie Pawlenko, that will include a selection of Petrikivka style paintings on canvas and paper, as well as embroidered ritual cloths (rushnyky).

Another Ukrainian-themed exhibit, “The Art of Ukrainian Embroidery,” on display from July 1 through August 27, features heirloom traditional Ukrainian embroideries presented by the Ukrainian National Women’s League of America (UNWLA) Branch 98. The exhibit includes beautiful traditional women’s and men’s shirts, folk costumes, pillows, table scarves, runners (servetky) and rushnyky, which exemplify the uniqueness of regional motifs, designs and colors, and types of stitches.

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, exhibits will be presented in-house with a limited number of guests at one time. Reservations are not required. In addition, all exhibits and lectures will be presented virtually on the Woodbridge Township website (twp.woodbridge.nj.us) as well as the Barron Arts Facebook page (facebook.com/BarronArtsCenter).

As a supplement to the exhibit, “Decorative Folk Art of Ukraine,” Mr. Mischenko presented a lecture, “Inside the Exhibit: Decorative Folk Art of Ukraine,” that was made available online on July 15. Olga Kobryn, a member of Branch 98 of the UNWLA, presented an illustrated lecture, “The History of Traditional Ukrainian Embroidery,” that was made available on July 22. Her presentation showcases the variety of stitches found among Ukrainian embroidery examples: folk costumes, women’s and men’s shirts, as well as other traditional embroidered articles for ceremonial and ornamental uses.

events are free with a suggested donation of $5. Donations are appreciated and are essential to the continuation of free quality arts programs and exhibits. The Barron Arts Center always accepts donations for The Mayor’s Food Bank and the Woodbridge Animal Shelter.

“Textiles: Reimagining New Jersey” is a visual arts and lecture series showcasing the varied fabric arts of the culturally diverse state of New Jersey, emphasizing how one of the oldest forms of art developed by mankind has evolved into a strong representation of ethnic pride as well as source of artistic individuality. The series is sponsored by The Woodbridge Township Cultural Arts Commission with the support of Mayor John McCormac. Grant funding has been provided by the Middlesex County Board of County Commissioners through a grant awarded by the Middlesex County Cultural and Arts Trust Fund.

The Barron Arts Center is located at 582 Rahway Avenue, Woodbridge, N.J. Gallery hours are Monday through Friday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, 2-4 p.m.; closed on holidays. The building that houses the Barron Arts Center is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and recently celebrated its 144th anniversary. With the support of the Woodbridge Township Cultural Arts Commission and under the direction of Cynthia Knight, the Barron Arts Center offers programming to the public free of charge.

For more information, readers may telephone the Barron Arts Center at 732-634-0413.