“First Fridays” Bring Art, Music, Neighbors to Binghamton Church

image above: Binghamton-area artists Yvonne Lucia (right image) and Cheryl DeLuke (left image) will share their work at Christ Episcopal Church’s December 2017 “First Friday” event. Attendees will also have the opportunity to walk a replica of the labyrinth at Chartres cathedral (center image) in the church’s Great Hall. The labyrinth is provided by Ms. Lucia. 

Updated December 4, 2017.

Downtown Binghamton’s monthly First Friday Art Walk finds residents and visitors enjoying an evening in the city’s shops, galleries, restaurants and performance spaces. And since 2016, Christ Episcopal Church (10 Henry Street, Binghamton) has offered Art Walk participants great local music and art in a holy space.

“It’s a way to celebrate our place in downtown and our sacred space,” says the Rev. Elizabeth Ewing, rector of Christ Church. “First Fridays have helped us engage with families and local schools, from elementary schools to the university. And it’s helped us celebrate the skills and talents of local artists and musicians.” Musicians and artists in the congregation have helped connect the church with the local arts scene, and a different parishioner volunteers to “host” the evening each month, with warden Susan MacLennan coordinating the series.

Whether its a ten-piece trombone group from Binghamton University, a painter setting up a gallery,  or a ceramic artist teaching visitors to make their own pinch pots, Christ Church is busy from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. the first Friday of each month. And there’s often a special activity for kids. “My favorite was kite-making,” says Ewing, who recalls children flying their new kites in the soaring sanctuary one evening.

This month (December 1, 2017 from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m.), visitors are invited to walk a replica of the Chartres labyrinth provided by local artist and spiritual director Yvonne Lucia. A labyrinth walk is an ancient form of prayer evoking the spiritual path as a journey to the sacred center and back out into the world. Lucia’s paintings, prayer and poetry re-imagining Mary will be part of the labyrinth installation, inviting participants to reflect on the sacred as found in the feminine. Visitors can also enjoy paintings by local artist Cheryl DeLuke, who will be demonstrating watercolor arts live throughout the evening as she creates a portrait of her dog, Bud.

The images above are provided by the artists.

VIDEO: Binghamton’s Channel 34 News previewed the December 1, 2017 First Friday event on November 30th.

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