[Image description: A rectangular graphic with a wide gold text banner at the top that reads "Fine Art Galleries." The Fine Art Galleries at Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center logo is in the upper right corner in black. Below the text banner are event details to the left and two abstract art paintings to the right. Black text reads "My Colors of Cancer," "paintings by Esther Maria Pagan," "Exhibit: November 16 - January 28," and "Artist Reception: November 18, 6-8 p.m." A white text box underneath reads "The Fine Art Galleries at Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center, 522 West Maple Street at Bayard Rustin Way, Allentown, PA 18101" and "bradburysullivancenter.org." Black text under the paintings reads "Curated by: Jane Heft." The logo for the Cancer Action Network of the American Cancer Society is to the right.]
Join us on Thursday, November 18 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center for a special artist reception featuring Esther Maria Pagan. Her exhibit of paintings, "My Colors of Cancer," will be on display at the center from November 16 to January 28.
I am a breast cancer survivor, artist, and inspirational performer who uses my own brand of artistry through community activism and education. I give strength to others sharing my own experiences creatively. As a poet, I embrace the opportunity to combine words, art and diversity to promote vision, education and culture. I conquer stigma to face humility with purpose.
Esther Maria Pagan was born in Youngstown, Ohio, but raised in the Bronx. She is a graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology, Parsons School of Design, and The Swedish Institute. She found her passion to be working with her hands to create and heal. She attended and completed studies at The Swedish Institute, often referred as the "Harvard of massage schools." In 1999, her healing path took her to become a New York State-licensed massage therapist. Her creative side allowed her to develop the skills to be a certified art handler via a grant awarded by the Bronx Council of the Arts that was funded in part by The Municipal Art Society and Lincoln Center.
Her artistic energy was exhibited in 2010 and the fall of 2013 at the Longwood Gallery at Hostos Community College, when she had a autobiographical solo show dedicated to her personal experience with a breast cancer diagnosis. She opted for a bilateral mastectomy on October 17, 2012. The show entitled "My Colors of Cancer" was well reviewed and defined her giving spirit. It is also the subject that documents her experience and will be published along with her blog entries that explain the ten surgeries that were part of her cancer experience.
Esther also developed her poetic creativity when she was an active member of a poetry collective called Full Circle Ensemble. Her involvement gave her the opportunity to perform at the National Black Theatre of Harlem in 2015. The artistic documentation of her breast cancer in the visual, written, and as performance is a real part of who Esther is and strives to be. Her outreach as a survivor has resulted in her speaking to at-risk audiences, those experiencing cancer, and the families of those women who have had to deal with breast cancer. Her massage skill set has allowed her to literally have hands on with those who need it the most. She is also on the platform of healing her voice about trauma and domestic violence. As a mentor, she shares how you can collaborate together on this subject matter. She further enlightens you on her mission and cause by teaching art and poetry as tools for healing. Look at her YouTube performance with Healing Voices 1(800) Don’t Die. She continues to create and elevate awareness through her passion of art and performance. Her hands are her livelihood, as she has found her purpose.
For more information, please contact Gabby Hochfeld, Arts & Culture Programs Coordinator, at [email protected].
This will be a sober-social event at Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center. Alcohol will not be present.
This event is sponsored by:
522 W Maple St
at Bayard Rustin Way
Allentown, PA 18101
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