"Yearning To Be Free: Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness" Art Quilts by Penny Sisto

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Sponsored by National City
July 20-September 15, 2007

The Carnegie Center for Art and History in New Albany, Indiana is pleased to announce the opening of a new exhibit, "Yearning to Be Free: Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness," featuring art quilts by fiber artist Penny Sisto.  The exhibit will be on display July 20 through September 15.  This most recent series of quilts by Penny Sisto features the faces and symbols of America's immigrant families.  She has captured their spirit as people-fearful and hopeful, lonesome and lonely, proud and industrious-as only she can.  The expression on their faces and in their eyes that Sisto creates gives viewers a glimpse into the many facets of the immigrant experience, perhaps since she was an immigrant herself many years ago.  "Yearning to Be Free: Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness" is generously sponsored by National City.

Artist Penny Sisto was born in the Orkney Islands off the northern tip of Scotland.  She began learning how to sew at age 3, taught by her grandmother.  As an adult, Sisto worked for the British Ministry of Overseas Development, using her skills as a midwife to aid health clinics for the Masai, LuBukusu and Kikuyu tribes of East Africa.  Her time in Africa inspired her to combine the quilting, embroidery and applique techniques she learned from her grandmother with the beading and collage methods of her African friends, resulting in the distinctive style seen in her work today.   Sisto's work has been exhibited in New York as well as Edinburgh, Scotland and Nairobi, Kenya, and her pieces can be found in the collections of Texas Oil, Gettysburg College, Spalding University, and the Thomas Merton International Studies Center, among others.  In October 2007, her Slavery Series quilts will travel to England along with the Carnegie Center's multimedia Underground Railroad program to be exhibited at the Royal Armouries in Leeds and the Bewdley Museum to commemorate the bicentennial of the abolition of the slave trade in the U.K.  She currently resides in Floyds Knobs, Indiana.  Visit www.pennysisto.com for more information on this remarkable artist.

There will be an opening reception for this exhibit on Friday, July 20, from 6-8 pm.  Visitors can enjoy refreshments, the sounds of the Jamey Aebersold Jazz Quartet, and a chance to meet the artist.  Sponsored by the Carnegie Center, Inc., this event is free and open to the public.  Additional works by Penny Sisto will be on display at The Gallery on Pearl (222 Pearl Street) until 9 pm.

Schedule of Events

The Carnegie Center is partnering with a number of organizations to present this exhibit as a multicultural experience.  The following events are free and open to the public.  Please call 812-944-7336 to register for those events with reservations required or suggested.  Events will be held at the Carnegie Center unless otherwise noted.

Friday, July 20, 6-8 pm, Opening Reception featuring live music from the Jamey Aebersold  Jazz Quartet  (sponsored by the Carnegie Center, Inc.)

Tuesday, July 31, 7-8:30 pm, Cross Cultural Conversation: Despite cultural differences, we  share common connections.  Explore these with us through the sharing of experiences  and dialogue.  Reservations required. Limit of 20 people.

Saturday, Aug. 4, 5-9 pm, Visit the Casa Latina Festival, 200 block of Woodbine, Louisville,  KY.


Saturday, Aug. 11, 10 am-12 pm, Family Fun Workshop: Carnegie Center Education Director  Laura Wilkins will lead families in an ethnic craft activity.  Reservations  suggested.


Tuesday, Aug. 7, 6-8:30 pm, Gallery Talk with artist Penny Sisto followed by a community  panel discussion on immigration.  Refreshments will be served.  Reservations required.


Saturday, Aug. 11, 4-8 pm, Visit World on the Square, downtown Corydon, IN.


Saturday Aug. 18, World of Flavor BBQ and Music Fest, downtown New Albany (hosted  by Develop New Albany).  Time and location to be announced.


Saturday, Aug. 25, 1-4 pm, National City Financial Literacy Program, Carnegie Center  Lower Level Meeting Room.


Friday, Aug. 31-Saturday, Sept. 1, Visit World Fest, Louisville Waterfront.


Saturday, Sept. 8, 10 am-12 pm, Family Fun Workshop, NA-FC Public Library Children's  Dept.  Carnegie Center Education Director Laura Wilkins will lead families in an ethnic  craft activity.  Reservations suggested.


Saturday Sept. 15, 6:30-11 pm, Visit Fiesta Latina, St. Mary's Church, 8th and Spring Streets,  New Albany. Annual festival of food, music, crafts and fun!

Visitors to the Carnegie Center from Louisville may be affected by the closing of I-64 in downtown Louisville July 5-August 5.  Drivers should take I-264 West to the Sherman Minton Bridge (route advised by the KY Transportation Cabinet).  Contact Carnegie Center staff at 812-944-7336 for assistance with directions or visit www.restore64.ky.gov for more information.

The Carnegie Center for Art and History, a department of the New Albany-Floyd County Public Library, is a contemporary art gallery and history museum that offers a full schedule of changing exhibitions and other educational programs.  The Carnegie Center is also home to two permanent exhibits: Ordinary People, Extraordinary Courage, an award-winning interactive multimedia exhibit on the Underground Railroad, and Grandpa Makes A Scene: The Yenawine Dioramas, a hand-carved, animated display of life in turn-of-the-century Georgetown, Indiana.  The Carnegie Center is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10:00 am-5:30 pm, and is located at 201 East Spring Street in historic downtown New Albany, Indiana. The Carnegie Center for Art and History is fully accessible.  Admission is free.  Visit
www.carnegiecenter.orgfor more information on exhibits, events, and classes.

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