Trenton Hall, located at Mercer County Community College’s (MCCC) James Kearney Campus, houses the JKC Gallery, an exhibition of photography from prominent artists all over the region. On October 16th, the gallery will usher in Patrice Helmar’s exhibit “Dirty Old Town,” which features her hometown of Juneau, Alaska.

The artist describes the exhibit in the following way. “These photographs explore the dramatic potential and complexity of returning home: characters, archetypes, and dreamlike landscapes of 50 miles on a road to nowhere. I’m in the third year of shooting this project. It’s the middle of June, and the sun doesn’t go down until well after midnight. I drive an old rusted truck that barely gets my gear around, drink too much coffee, and go about visiting old haunts. During the day I drive out the one road, exploring neighborhoods and landscapes. In the evening, I find myself making photographs in the downtown area where I was a bartender for much of my twenties. Life for many Alaskans begins and ends in a bar, or a tired circle of town. Bars for the irreligious, and God fearing folks alike are a social center. Much to the chagrin of locals, my camera and lights are a bright disruption in barrooms and on the street. “

Patrice Aphrodite Helmar is a photographer and curator from Juneau, Alaska, who lives and works in New York City. She is a graduate of Columbia University’s Visual Arts MFA program, and a current visiting professor at Pratt Institute and Columbia University.

Helmar’s work has appeared internationally, including at the Jewish Museum, National Museum of Iceland, Houston Center for Photography, New York Photo Festival, BOSI Contemporary, Fisher Landau Center, Judith Charles Gallery, and the Anchorage Museum.

The exhibit will run October 16 through November 13 and will feature an opening Reception on October 24th – 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. with an Artist Talk at 6 p.m.

The JKC Gallery is located at Trenton Hall on 137 North Broad Street. For gallery hours or to learn more about the JKC Gallery, visit them online at http://www.mccc.edu/community_gallery_jkc.shtml.

Also, if you’re in the market for a college education, tuition at MCCC could be free if you you qualify. Visit www.mccc.edu/free for more information.