The Gallery at St. John’s

At The Gallery at St. John’s during January and February 2018

THE GENERAL SLOCUM DISASTER

Cindy Vojnovic paintings

 January 7 through February 25, 2018

Sundays 12 – 3 pm

An unbelievably tragic event happened on June 15, 1904. This incident was the worst tragedy, with the most lives lost in NYC until 9/11. Sadly, few people seem to know about it – even here in the Mid-Atlantic area of the United States where we live. It is a story of human error, greed and corruption.

St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in lower Manhattan had chartered The General Slocum Steamboat for an afternoon on the East River when a fire broke out. The boat was seventeen years old and had never been inspected. The life jackets did not work, fire hoses had rotted and the life boats were nailed to the walls. Approximately 1,100 people died, mostly women and children, either by drowning or being burned to death. The congregation never recovered from such a loss nor did the lower east side.

Easton artist, Cindy Vojnovic, was living in New York City in the 1980s and was so moved by this tragedy that she decided to do a painterly interpretation of the incident. When she began her research she found little more than newspaper articles on microfilm. No books had been written about such a horrific event. (That was prior to the 100th anniversary and before the publication of Ship Ablaze by Edward O’Donnell. Three “instant books” were done almost immediately after the disaster but even the reference librarian at the New York City Public Library main branch was unable to find them.) It took from 1987, when Cindy decided to paint this story, until 2014 for her to do the first painting, “Retrieving Bodies.” One reason for this was grappling with just how to visualize scenes of such unspeakable horror.

Cindy has spent several years on this project and only recently completed the 22 paintings that make up the exhibit which will be on display at The Gallery at St. John’s during January and February 2018.

Cindy will give a brief talk during the Opening Reception. She is very pleased to be showing this in a Lutheran church since this tragedy took the lives of so many Lutherans. Cindy has had inquiries from at least two galleries in NYC that are interested in the exhibit.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Opening Reception: 12:00 – 3:00 pm

Artist’s Talk: 12:30 pm

 

Gallery Hours

Sundays, 12 – 3 pm

 Weekdays by Appointment

Free and Open to the Public

 

The gallery is free ● All are welcome ● Free parking