Free entry this weekend: The Noble Maritime Museum celebrates the anniversary of September 11 with the “Arc of Twenty Years” exhibition and curatorial conference
STATEN ISLAND, NY – The Noble Maritime Collection will honor the 20th anniversary of September 11 with free admission to the museum on Saturdays and Sundays (September 11-12), according to Ciro Galeno, Jr, executive director of the museum.
Visitors are encouraged to view “Arc of Twenty Years”, an exhibition curated independently by photographer Michael McWeeney and painter Sarah Yuster. The exhibit is a multimedia show on the emotional impact and socio-political changes on Staten Island after the terrorist attacks.
“It’s not just a memorial; it’s a look at how we as a company have grown over the past 20 years, ”said McWeeney. “The artists take you through their personal stories and contemplate how all of our lives were changed by the September 11 attacks.”
The museum is located at the Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden, 1000 Richmond Terrace, Building D and will be open on both days from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. “Arc of Twenty Years” will be on view until October 3, 2021 in the museum library.
McWeeney and Yuster will also participate in “Arc of Twenty Years: Meet the Curators”, a free lecture in the gallery on Thursday September 9, 2021 from 6 to 8 pm. The co-curators will give introductions at 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. and engage in a conversation about their purpose in creating the show and the works of the artists who have contributed to it.
“In the 20 years since September 11, much of our population has changed dramatically,” said Yuster. “The way we see ourselves and each other as individuals, as Americans, has taken a marked, event-driven trajectory.
“The exhibition lists and explores the main aspects of these permutations through art, photography, writing and short films.
TWENTY YEARS ‘ARC
The exhibition presents the work of Ghanim Khalil, Scott LoBaido, Diane Matyas, Ann Marie McDonnell, McWeeney, Kristi Pfister, Marguerite Maria Rivas and Yuster, all artists from Staten Island.
A lithograph depicting the World Trade Center by John A. Noble (1913-1983), the museum’s namesake, is also included in the exhibit.
“Staten Island is, in many ways, a microcosm of the United States in terms of ethnicity, economics, and ideologies,” Yuster said. “The immediate and long-term aftermath of that day reverberated across the country. The initial agony of three thousand innocent lives lost all at once, the ensuing spasms of fury and fear were felt most intensely here.
“Empathy, camaraderie, selflessness and unity soared for weeks, galvanizing New Yorkers, but quickly dissipated into splinter factions. Art and response from all factions will be displayed.
Yuster’s painting The fireman, on loan from the Staten Island Children’s Museum, as well as three paintings depicting the evolution of the Lower Manhattan skyline from 1985 to 2014, are on display.
“Witness,” a poem by Staten Island’s first Poet Laureate, Marguerite Maria Rivas, is featured in the exhibit. Rivas first emailed the poem to a friend in Colorado immediately after the attacks, and it’s now part of the National September 11 Memorial and Museum’s online collection..
Marie McDonnell contributed two bronze sculptures, Missing and The faithful, who honor the lives of lost people and loved ones who mourn them.
Matyas contributed to a multimedia work incorporating a painting with an apron and a napkin, which she made to honor the lives of the employees of the Windows on the World restaurant.
LoBaido exhibits a reproduction of an oil painting he produced immediately after the attacks; it was originally hung at the Cargo Cafe in St. George, a local gathering place for the community at the time.
Pfister is exhibiting six paintings, five of them on ceramic tile, and a drawing made in the aftermath of 9/11, depicting people in various states of digging and waiting, looking for answers.
McWeeney is exhibiting a photograph of the Tribute in Light taken in March 2002, the first time these lights were turned on, as well as a series of portraits titled Speech, with accompanying audio in the subjects’ own words on the Muslim post-9/11 experience, as conceived by scholar Ghanim Khalil.
John A. Noble’s lithograph “Ghost of a Bygone Ferry” is on display in the museum’s collection. This print is his reaction to the passage of time and the decline of many New York Harbor ferry routes in the 1970s; the twin towers, under construction, feature prominently in the background of the composition.
For more information on the exhibit, visit noblemaritime.org/arc-of-twenty-years.
This exhibit is funded, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with City Council; the New York State Council for the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature; and by a grant from the Lily Auchincloss Foundation.
For more information about the museum, call (718) 447-6490 or visit noblemaritime.org.