Monmouth Museum features art dealing with cancer

Photo by Amanda Karp

The Monmouth Museum in Lincroft, New Jersey, is self-professed as being “innovative, changing exhibits focusing on art, natural sciences & cultural history for all ages.”

Open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesday through Saturday and 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, its two art galleries, children’s wings, and exhibits make for the perfect class trip or an opportunity for introspection in the art galleries.

The children’s wing includes a pirate ship off of the main entrance that children under six are welcome to enjoy, and as you go further into the museum, the main hallway explores the development of our universe and the beginnings of communication.

Once through the main hallway, you can choose to visit a small room focusing on ancient Egypt, or the reading room with books that you can borrow free of charge, or the arts and crafts room. On the second floor are exhibits for astronomy, weather changes and a miniature planetarium. 

Currently on display in the main gallery is Karen Starett's “Art & Healing: Expressions of trauma and gratitude.” She is one of the eight artists featured in the exhibit that explore “expressing visual stories of trauma, healing, hope and gratitude” following a cancer diagnosis and “the significance that making art has, and continues to have, on their lives,” according to the website.

Other artists featured are Theresa DeSalvio, Shari Epstein, Arlene Mollow, Carol Radsprecher, Bob Rivera, Nisha Sondhe and June Wilson.

All the artists had been working with art prior to their diagnosis, and afterward, incorporated their feelings into multimedia works to represent what they were going through. 

Artists connected their work to the world around them, featuring motifs of eclipses, nuclear holocausts and conversely, the beginnings of life.

Their trauma and grief spawned works to help them cope and heal, painting concrete and abstract ideas.