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Art gallery opens the year with 'What I did in quarantine' show

"What I did in quarantine" is a show that invites artists to submit work that they have made since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis.

BLOOMSBURG, Pa. — The Exchange Gallery on Main Street in Bloomsburg opened at the beginning of the year by having artists reflect on last year.

"What I did in quarantine" is a show that invites artists to submit work that they have made since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis.

"A lot of artists have been challenged by the year without other venues to bring their work. Other people have found all of the extra time that they've had hugely motivating, and they've just been tremendously productive," said Oren Helbok, the executive director of the Exchange Gallery.

From figures made out of toilet paper to artwork created by people as young as 4 years old, more than 50 artists from all over Pennsylvania and even New York City submitted works of art. Some pieces were inspired by the coronavirus, and others were created over quarantine.

"We have 2-D work, we have 3-D work, we have video work, we have artists never shown in our gallery before who have shown elsewhere," Helbok said. "We have some people in this show, including my age and older, who have never shown anywhere but are showing work here in this show, for the very first time. That thrills me to no end."

Over 100 pieces of art can be found in the show. Artists tell Newswatch 16 they're grateful for the opportunity to showcase their work once again.

"We are grateful. For a community like Bloomsburg to have a place like the Exchange, which nurtures so much of the community in so many different ways all the time, and they've continued doing it through this pandemic," said artist Robert McCormick.

The show runs until February 19.

To digitally view the works of art, click here.