Contact: Michael Traupman, Executive Director of College Relations, 610-740-3790,

                Karen Passino



Allentown, PA (August 14, 2008) – Ali LaRock, an artist from Bismarck, ND, will display a selection of her work in a new exhibition, “Bitter Sweet,” in the Cressman Library Gallery at Cedar Crest College.  The exhibit runs from September 15 – December 4, 2008 with an artist talk and reception on September 18th beginning at 5:00 p.m.

LaRock, who works in painting, drawing and mixed media, describes her art as a continuous learning process about herself, those around her and the complexity of the world.  She acknowledges that, at first glance, the viewer may see her work as whimsical, childlike and even silly.  But she hopes that upon closer examination, the viewer will detect more serious thoughts and ideas.

“Combining humor and playfulness with the intense issues that are involved in trying to understand myself and others is a natural response to the way I see the world – a place filled with so many wonderful feelings and possibilities, and yet a very frustrating place full of all sorts of struggles,” says LaRock.

Most of the paintings featured in the exhibit sprung from the pages of LaRock’s sketchbook and visual journals.  “I feel that I am able to translate the freshness and intentions of the original sketches into paint by using the materials in a way that is most natural and immediate to me.”

Another important aspect of her work is the incorporation of text, which LaRock uses to further convey her ideas, and which become an important element of the composition that can be experimented with and manipulated, in much the same way that she works with paint.

Besides creating and exhibiting her art, LaRock enjoys teaching art to young people through various artist-in-residence opportunities with organizations including the North Dakota Council on the Arts, Theo Art School, Sleepy Hollow Summer Theatre, and the International Music Camp.  She received her B.F.A. in painting from Minnesota State University, Moorhead in 1998.

"Bitter Sweet," runs from September 15, 2008 – December 4, 2008 in the Cressman Gallery and is free and open to the public.  The Cressman Gallery is open during Cressman Library hours.  Call 610-606-4605 for hours of operation.  For more information, please contact Brian Wiggins, gallery coordinator, at 610-606-4666, ext. 3469.


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