Art in the Atrium, Inc. will hold it's 23rd Annual Exhibit, 'Ancient Rhythms Remixed', featuring fabric artist, Bisa Butler, on January 23rd from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Morris County Administration & Records Building, 10 Court Street, Morristown, NJ.

This year's show will feature Bisa Butler, who reinterprets the art of quilt-making, and more than 20 additional artists. The public opening will include a cocktail reception.

There will also be a press and VIP Patron reception at the administration building on January 22nd from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m at the County Administration Building on Court Street.

“Ancient Rhythms Remixed” explores work by African American artists that blends the traditional with the new and includes several younger emerging artists, in addition to many who are established.

We want to inspire people to take a new look at the way we do our work. Bisa’s pieces appeal to many different audiences and because thy are created from fabric, it gives the show added texture.

Bisa Butler uses the centuries-old art of quilt-making to produce painterly, modernist portraits of figures like Josephine Baker, Nelson Mandela, Marvin Gaye and Jean-Michael Basquiat. Her art has been exhibited at both the Smithsonian and Epcott Center in Disney World.

Art in the Atrium’s school arts program, which is tied to the show, will also take on an added dimension when Butler, a teacher in the Newark public school system, visits classrooms in advance of the show to help children appreciate the experience of seeing an art exhibition. In the past, artists spoke with children after their trip.

Additional artists in the show include Alonzo Adams, James Denmark, Janet Taylor-Pickett, Maceo Mitchell, Leroy Campbell, Deborah Willis, Dwight Carter, Barbara Bullock and Norman Lewis.

Our annual exhibition is the largest of its kind in the state and really helps to expand people’s idea of what African-American art can be. We have works in all mediums and genres. It’s not just figurative paintings with a mask in them.


Bisa Butler was born in Orange, NJ and raised in South Orange ,the youngest of four siblings. Butler's artistic talent was first recognized at the age of four, when she won a blue ribbon in the Plainfield Sidewalk art competition. By age five, Butler was named the "artist of the month" at her nursery school. She currently resides in West Orange, New Jersey and is a Newark Public School art teacher.

A formally trained artist, Butler graduated Cum Laude from Howard University, with a Bachelor's in Fine Art degree. It was her education at Howard that Butler was able to refine her natural talents under the tutelage of such lecturers as Lois Mailou Jones, Elizabeth Catlett, and Ernie Barnes. While at Howard, Butler also studied the works of Romare Bearden, Faith Ringgold, and Henry O. Tanner.

While in the process of obtaining her Masters degree on the road to a career as an art teacher, Butler took a Fiber Arts class that the light bulb went on and she finally realized how to express her art. "As a child, I was always watching my mother and grandmother sew, and they taught me. After that class, I made a quilt for my grandmother on her deathbed, and I have been quilting ever since."

Recently Butler had the honor of having her artwork displayed at the Smithsonian Museum of American History, and at Walt Disney Worlds Epcot Center. Butler's quilts are enchanting works of art. These quilts communicate art, emotion, heritage, tradition, and beauty. The quilts of Bisa Butler represent a merging of artistic excellence and quilting magic.