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  • Writer's picturePress Release


Words and Images Courtesy of The Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center

Portsmouth, VA The Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center is pleased to present If Not Now? an exhibition that features artwork by eight artists whose work draws attention to destructive environmental impacts dating to the beginning of the industrial revolution.

The work poses the questions: What can be done now; when might the next impact occur and who will take these challenges on? Many artists have collaborated with scientists and environmentalists to seek solutions. Others create work that provides a visual realization of how pollution impacts the air we breathe, the water we drink, the oceans and earth that we harvest, and the land that we live on. Artists are: Kim Abeles (California) a multi-media artist and early pioneer in the environmental art movement who utilizes smog as a printmaking medium; Jean Benvenuto (Portsmouth) focused the subject of her paintings on holding ponds created to contain and clean rainwater from road run-off; Rosemary Feit Covey (Virginia) printmaker and painter use print media to present the intricate web of interconnected root systems; Barbara Hennig-Loomis (Virginia) painter and silver-point artist-focused large-scale drawings on ghost forests, a result of rising sea-levels. Printmaker and book artist Nicole Pietrantoni (Washington State) creates large-scale installations of books that share the impact of melting glaciers.

Multi-media artist and photographer Pam Ponce (Virginia) records the impact that drought had on the Great Dismal Swamp and rising sea levels around Virginia’s barrier islands. John Sabraw, of Ohio, incorporates scientific research into his artwork creating paint from iron oxides that are a remnant of acid run-off from former mining sites, including around the Chesapeake Bay. And, Millicent Young of New York is a sculptor whose work utilizes horsehair that speaks toward the fragility of life itself.

On Saturday, August 13, from 10 a.m. – 2:30 p.m., PACC will offer free programming to coincide with this exhibit. Mr. John Sabraw, an environmental activist and artist, will be conducting a demonstration and illustrated presentation, Anthropotography: Mapping the Impact of Art in the gallery. His works have been in TED, the Smithsonian, New Science, Great Big Stories, Business Insider, and Time. For details visit

The exhibition will be on view through Sunday, October 16th, 2022.

About the Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center

The Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center (PACC), is housed in the historic 1846 Courthouse and is devoted to offering quality educational, cultural, and aesthetic experiences through rotating visual art and cultural exhibits, lectures, classes, and performances. It is located at 400 High Street in Portsmouth, VA. Museum Hours: Wednesday – Saturday: 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m., Sunday: 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. First Friday of each month: 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. Closed Mondays and Tuesdays. Admission: $3/adults, $2/ages 2 – 17 years; Under 2: Free; Members: Free; AAA, military and senior discounts available.

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