Press Release: Art from Detritus: 20th Anniversary Invitational

Curated by Vernita Nemec
March 3rd- April 4th, 2015
Reception: Thursday March 5th, 6-8pm

Marcia Bernstein * Taisha Brehaut * Valentina Celada * Ursula Clark * May DeViney * Fred Gutzeit * Sandra Guze * Ed Herman * Elizabeth Featherstone Hoff * Kathleen King * Bernice Sokol Kramer * Iris Lavy * Lee Lee * Kathy Levine * Lynne Mayocole * * Garry Noland * Peggy Noland * Carol Quint * Elizabeth Rhoades Read * Norman Reid * Diane Root * Leonard Rosenfeld * Helaine Soller * Renata Stein * Stephen Soreff * Suprina *Judy Thomas * Sam Wiener * Larry Zdeb * Philip Zuchman

 Chelsea NY: Viridian Artists is pleased to present the exhibit “Art of Detritus: 20th Anniversary Invitational” featuring fine art made primarily from trash. The heart of this exhibit is the message of the three R’s: Reduce/Reuse/Recycle. The exhibit will open March 3rd and continues through April 4th with a reception March 5, 6-8pm.

“Art From Detritus” serves to enrich the dialogue between art and the lives of ordinary people because we all have too much trash. By focusing on recycling or “upcycling” as their method and source for creating, these artists have made their artmaking serve as both a message and inspiration. This exhibit reaches beyond the art world, serving as a message not only about art, but also about recycling for the good of the environment.

Since 1994, the changing group of artists in this exhibit has opened dialogues with viewers about the importance and usefulness of art as something beyond decoration. Artists often cannot afford studio assistants, expensive materials and equipment for art making, but see beauty in the discarded and these artists have realized this to creatively deal with the problem of too much trash.

“Art from Detritus”, or art from waste, was first conceived and curated by Vernita Nemec, an artist/ curator in 1994 in Portland Oregon during the annual conference of the National Recycling Coalition (NRC). It was presented in the lobby of a recycled Sears Roebuck building & corporate head quarters for municipal waste & recycling there. Since then, the exhibit has re-occurred with funding from the Kauffman Foundation, the Puffin Foundation and sponsorship by the NRC. The exhibit was presented in Pittsburgh at the Westinghouse headquarters, the Museum of Arts & Crafts and the AIA; in Kansas City MO at the Linda Hall Library of Science, Rockhust College & the Writer’s Place.

Phoenix AZ, Turners Falls MA and NYC have all been Detritus exhibition sites since. In NYC, Detritus exhibits have occurred at the Henry Street Abrams Arts Center, Gallery 450, Viridian Artists, Synagogue for the Arts, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, Farleigh Dickinson University and the Williamsburgh Art Center. See more information and images of past Detritus shows at

Vernita Nemec, a.k.a. Vernita N’Cognita, is a visual (“The Endless Junkmail Scroll”) & performance artist presenting pieces like “Dress” (of catfood can lids) performed at Dance Theater Workshop (DTW), a curator, the director of Viridian Artists and former Executive Director of Artists Talk on Art (ATOA). She is also on the board of Advisors of ATOA & Soho20.