Art Strings 2016–17 Painted Violin Raffle

Art Strings combines the visual and performing arts to raise funds for the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra’s extensive music education and community engagement programs. Ten local artists were commissioned to create individual works of art using unfinished violins as their canvas, drawing inspiration from a musical program or work the NJSO is presenting in its 2016–17 season. NJSO volunteer ambassadors generously donate their time to display the violins at NJSO concerts and select art galleries throughout New Jersey.

Now in its 16th year, this wonderful project has featured more than 160 violins—each and every one created by a different New Jersey artist—and has raised more than $150,000!

Read an NJSO: Backstage profile on the Art Strings program.


2016–17 Art Strings Collection

Click on the images below to view a larger version and the reverse side of the violins.

Violin 1 Resize.jpgViolin 1: Piazzolla’s The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires

Artist: Alexandra Bigatti
Email: [email protected]

Maria Alejandra (Alex) Bigatti holds a degree in architecture from the School of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Buenos Aires in Argentina, where she was born and lived until marrying and moving to the United States. She lived and worked as an architect in Southern California for several years before relocating to New Jersey and starting a family. Since a very young age, she has loved drawing, painting and modeling in clay. Her wide range of interests and abilities led her to experiment and develop, on her own and under the instruction of several artists, in both abstract and figurative painting using a variety of media, such as watercolors, acrylics, ink and oils, as well as sculpting in clay and plasticine. She is a member of the Center for Contemporary Art, Farmstead Arts Center and a member of the leadership team of ARTsee, a growing grassroots art organization. Her work has been in juried and non-juried shows and is in private collections in the United States and abroad. Bigatti resides in Basking Ridge with her husband, two boys and their dog, Milu.


Violin 3 resize.jpgViolin 3: Schoenberg’s Verklärte Nacht (Transfigured Night)

Artist: Todd Doney
Email: [email protected]

Born and raised in Chicago, Doney started his art education at a local community college and then went on to attend the prestigious American Academy of Art in Chicago, where he was awarded the Union League Scholarship Award. Upon graduating, he immediately started his career as an illustrator and obtained his first commission, a football illustration for Playboy magazine. Todd's gallery work includes exhibits at the Morris Museum in Morristown, NJ, Broadfoot & Broadfoot in Soho, NY, Gallery MacEgan, Morristown, NJ, the College of Saint Elizabeth, Morristown, NJ, New Jersey City University and the Brickton Art Gallery in Park Ridge, Illinois. His paintings have also been exhibited at the Paterson Museum, The Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, The Arts for the Parks National Competition in Wyoming and Society of Illustrators Annual Exhibitions in New York, among others. Currently, his work is being represented by Broadfoot & Broadfoot in Soho and Boonton. His works are in public and private collections worldwide, including the Morris Museum, US Golf Museum and the collection of comic icon Joe Kubert. His freelance illustration career has spanned more than 25 years, with a client list that includes AT&T, Budweiser, Charles Scribner’s & Sons, Eddie Bauer, Field & Stream Magazine, Golf Magazine, Houghton Mifflin, Ocean Spray, Reader’s Digest, US Open of Golf and William Morrow & Company. Doney received his MFA in painting from NJCU. He is currently an assistant professor of art at County College of Morris, where he teaches drawing, painting and foundation classes. He has also held positions at NJCU, Seton Hall University, The College of Saint Elizabeth and the American Academy of Art in Chicago. Doney lives with his family in Gillette. His home is situated adjacent to the Great Swamp Wildlife Refuge, which is an inspiration for much of his work.

Violin 5 resize.jpgViolin 5: Ella & Louis

Artist: Boaz Kimelman
Email: [email protected]

Boaz Kimelman, founder and creative director of BoazDesign LLC and BoazDesign Web Solutions, is an accomplished graphic designer.  A graduate of the School of Visual Arts, Kimelman has worked with some of the biggest household names, including Coca Cola, General Motors, Campbells Soup, M&M Mars, The Walt Disney Company, Fellowes, Nickelodeon, Mattel, Warner Bros., Liz Claiborne, JKL Brand and The Andy Warhol Foundation, among others. Fast but focused, competitive yet collaborative and always with an eclectic beat, Kimelman's unique approach to the design process lies at the intersection of some of his life’s passions: fashion, jazz and the sport of ping-pong.

Violin 6 resize.jpgViolin 6: Dancing & Romancing

Artist: Hannah Lieberman
Email: [email protected]

Hannah Lieberman has a BFA from Tyler School of Art. She has taught at public schools in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. She teaches the art of paper-folding at Teen Arts Festivals in several counties, as well as after-school programs and adult workshops. She is a Certified Zentangle Teacher and enjoys creating works inspired by the Zentangle method. In addition, she has done custom design work involving Hebrew letter forms and is currently a Hebrew reading specialist at Temple Emanu-El in Westfield.

Violin 7 resize.jpgViolin 7: Dvoƙák’s “Cheerful” Symphony No. 8

Artist: Donna O'Grady
Email: [email protected]

Donna O’Grady was born in Jersey City and currently resides in Hoboken. She paints in oils using underpainting techniques to capture light and atmosphere in her paintings. Her artwork resides in many private residences. She studied at the Art Students League and School of Visual Arts in New York and attends painting workshops in Italy. Her art exhibits include the following venues: JC Fridays, Main Avenue Galleria, Hob’Art Gallery Monroe Center, Hoboken Historical Museum and Hoboken Public Library, as well as private collections.

Violin 8 resize.jpgViolin 8: Tchaikovsky, the Russian composer

Artist: Laurie Pettine
E-mail: [email protected]

Laurie Pettine is a fine artist/illustrator living in Mendham. She earned a bachelor's degree in illustration from Parsons School of Design/New School. After years in advertising and publishing, Pettine has been working exclusively on fine arts in the pop surrealist/visionary art style. Pettine’s work is playful and childlike: dreamscaped, yet strangely familiar. She writes, “My mission as a visual artist is to open a window onto my off-center obsessions —fringe culture, oddball religions and pseudo-science—and present these worlds as my personal symbolic storytelling.” Pettine’s company, Chaotic Attractors, LLC is her latest contribution to pop culture—creating art toys and other related merchandise that echo her alternative art interests. Her work has been exhibited at the following venues: West Windsor Art Center, Artworks Gallery, Contemporary Art Members Show, Hive Gallery/MCAW, ArtSee Garden Show, Morristown Atrium Gallery, A.J. Dillon Gallery, Speakeasy Gallery, The Visual Art Center of NJ and The Art Guild of NJ.

Violin 9 resize.jpgViolin 9: Sibelius’ Symphony No. 2

Artist: Marcia Reich
Email: [email protected]

Marcia Reich is a contemporary painter and mixed-media artist. She lives in New Jersey and has a studio in Morristown. Exploration and discovery are key elements of her paintings that have often been described as a “hunt for treasure.” Her use of line, color, texture and mixed media are an integral part of the work. Though acrylic paint is the primary medium, oil pastels and charcoal are used frequently and play a fundamental role in her painting. Marcia's background in psychology and the expressive arts ultimately resulted in her not becoming an art therapist but instead awakened her own passion for making art. This began nearly two decades ago and continues to grow and thrive. Marcia has had several solo exhibits and has been represented in a number of galleries in New Jersey and Connecticut. She is also represented by Wendover Art. Her work can be found in private collections throughout the United States and Europe.

Violin 10 resize.jpgViolin 10: Mozart’s Così fan tutte Overture

Artist: Alexander Vargas
Email: [email protected]

Born and raised in Morristown, Alex Vargas is first-generation Latin American with Guatemalan roots. His childhood attraction to graffiti sparked his interest in art and creativity, specifically organization within chaos. High-school art teachers saw his skill and helped him harness his natural abilities. By the time he graduated, he had no other interest other than art and went on to study his passion at Montclair State University. He began to develop a style of abstract art that incorporated characteristics of graffiti-like line work and layering. His biggest influences are Jackson Pollack, Van Gogh and Basquiat. He likes to describe his paintings as “energy, the spiritual realm, however the viewer interprets it.”