February artists: Omari Booker, Paulette Licitra, group show

Posted on: January 31st, 2018 by tgregory

Nashville artist Omari Booker and some of his works

The Gordon Jewish Community Center’s January art show exhibits will feature the work of Paulette Licitra and Omari Booker, along with a group show titled “Expressions of Love.”

Paulette Licitra, a native of Brooklyn who currently lives in Nashville, is a self-taught artist who started painting in 2011. Her work will be shown in the Janet Levine March Gallery 2 space.

Paulette takes her inspiration from naive and primitive painters. Her favorite subjects are the buildings, monuments, and cityscapes that have captured her heart. She works in acrylic on canvas, usually at night, working at her easel on the kitchen tabletop. 

Paulette studied art in college and has written over 100 art exhibition audio tours for museums all over the country. She’s been haunting museums and galleries since she was a small child, frequently in the presence of great masterworks. Her mother painted murals and canvases. Her uncle was a career painter and mentored with the Japanese artist, Yasuo Kuniyoshi, in the 1940s.

Paulette’s work has been shown at the University School of Nashville’s Artclectic, the Germantown Art Crawl, and is part of many private collections. 

In her other life, Paulette teaches Italian cooking classes in Nashville and appears frequently on WSMV-TV Channel 4 as Chef Paulette. She also performs in the band Duette with Duane Spencer.

In the Janet Levine March Gallery, the works of Omari Booker will be shown. He began his journey as an artist his senior year of high school at Montgomery Bell Academy. There he realized his gift for visual art and as with most true artists, the path to developing his talent has been anything but linear. It has taken him through various disciplines and institutions including Belmont University, Middle Tennessee State University, and Tennessee State University. As he studied mathematics and other more traditional curricula he finally focused on studio art and graphic design earning his bachelor’s degree in graphic design from Tennessee State University.

Omari’s work has been influenced by masters such as Vincent Van Gogh and Salvador Dali as well as modern artists like Charles White and Jacob Lawrence. A consistent affinity for realism is apparent in his work, while abstractions can also be found. Oil painting is Omari’s predominant medium, but charcoal, chalk pastels, and acrylic paintings are essential building blocks of his work, and are often finished pieces.

Omari takes a process-oriented approach to his art, embracing it as a therapeutic modality through which he is able to express his passion for the freedom and independence that the creative process allows him to experience. His art is his personal therapy, and his desire is that those viewing it will have personal experiences of catharsis. The philosophy that undergirds Omari’s work is freedom through art and he aspires to create work that communicates to his audience their unique and intrinsic ability to be free.

The Sig Held Gallery will host a group show exhibition on the theme “Expressions of Love.”

The reception for the artists will be held on Feb. 14 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the JCC, 801 Percy Warner Blvd.  There will be music by DJ Joseph Harris along with complimentary food and beverages to accompany the event. The event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact the GJCC at 615.354-1699, Curator Carrie Mills at carrie@nashvillejcc.org or go to www.nashvillejcc.org