Journey through “Gateways” as Gallery 62 West reopens to public


GRAFTON—After a short closure, the Taylor County Arts Council (TCAC) is excited to announce that they will once again welcome art enthusiasts to Gallery 62 West.

“Thanks to a grant provided by the West Virginia Division of Culture and History, and the Endowment for the Arts, we have an announcement that makes us very happy,” exclaimed a TCAC representative. “Gallery 62 West is opening up!”

The grant funding allowed the organization to make necessary repairs to their building, thus passing inspections and allowing them to open their doors to help foster a love of art in the community.

“We are a 501c3 organization and depend on the kindness and generosity of our patrons to help us on our mission to bring art of various kinds to the residents of Grafton, Taylor County and beyond,” said the representative. “We are so grateful to have received the funding to open again. And as always, we appreciate, so much, the support we receive from this community!”

And what better way to kick off their re-opening than with an opening reception of a local artists work?

The TCAC is proud to announce that they will be featuring the works of a Grafton native who harbors a passion for finding beauty in the simple things in life but knows that her subjects are anything but simple.

As a child, Cindy Rubenstein would often look at old black and white photographs of her family. On the surface, the pictures presented times of family gatherings, holidays, and the like, and helped to instill in her a deep interest in photography.

However, even as a young child, Rubenstein came to realize that those captures were not merely something fun to look at, but that those photographs contained a whole story, and that those stories were the gateways between generations.

“I would imagine what a house long gone once looked like or how people I had never met may have interacted with one another,” she explained.

The realization that these images were more than just processed pictures only sparked her interest in photography more, and Rubenstein, with a keen eye for the art, began capturing images of her own. 

These photographs not only portrayed a lovely sight but helped to tell a story of a life lived and events that were memorable to her.

“My photographs, while seemingly ordinary moments, are actually extraordinary moments that developed off camera,” Rubenstein told.

And while she first began using a traditional camera and has admitted that her Nikon is by far her favorite, Rubenstein soon realized that the easiest way to capture moments in a split second was by utilizing a different tool her phone camera.

In fact, the photography being exhibited in her show titled “Gateways,” is that of images she caught through the lens of her iPhone X.

The stunning compilation includes shots from West Virginia, New Hampshire and California, three of the artists favorite places to be.

Rubenstein hails from Grafton, where she was born and raised. For the past 20 years, she has been a professional counselor. 

When not helping those around her or snapping photos, she enjoys spending time with her husband, Shawn, and her two children Elias and Violet. But in those moments, she is never too far from her camera.

Some may say that her upbringing in Grafton may have allowed Rubenstein to take notice of the small, beautiful moments that occur, that help to tell a larger story of life.

The Taylor County Arts Council welcomes you to come and take in Rubenstein’s works, during the opening of her exhibition during Grafton’s July First Friday Events. An opening reception will be held on Friday, July 1 from 6:00-8:00 p.m., where guests will be able to meet with the artists and hear about some of their favorite shots.

Those wishing for a sneak peek of the show can visit Gallery 62 West from 11:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m., that same day.

“If you stop by for a sneak peek of the show, you can enjoy a delicious dessert and drink, as we restored an old fundraiser called Thank Goodness It’s Dessert Friday!,” the TCAC member shared.

The fundraiser will feature delicious treats like pecan pie, rhubarb nut muffins, strawberry rhubarb pie and candy bar brownies. Wash your sweet treats with some iced chai tea, iced coffee, tea, hot coffee and water.

“Please stop by, grab a sweet treat and enjoy an amazing show,” said an arts council member. “One that will open the gateways to ideas and imagination.”

© 2022-Mountain Statesman

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