Tag: Paramus

Gallery Bergen, West Hall                                                          Bergen Community College                                                     400 Paramus Road                                                             Paramus, NJ 07652

Gallery Bergen, West Hall Bergen Community College 400 Paramus Road Paramus, NJ 07652

Gallery Bergen-West Hall

Bergen Community College

400 Paramus Road

Paramus, NJ  07652

Open: Monday-Friday-10:00am-5:00pm/Closed on Saturdays and Sundays/After hours by Appointment

Free to the public

Gallery Bergen


TripAdvisor Review:


I never realized until just recently that we have an art gallery on the Bergen Community College campus. I have been teaching here since 2013 and just found out about this little ‘gem’ that is tucked in the second floor of West Hall.

This wonderful little gallery can be accessed on the Main Campus of Bergen Community College and is open to the public for viewing. The Art students of Bergen Community College show their works in student shows and the Retailing students show their work outside the Gallery.

Gallery Bergen VIII.jpg

Gallery Curator Professor Tim Blunk

The Gallery is a reasonably sized space and viewing the Gallery Bergen takes a reasonable amount of time that is not over-whelming. It is a nice way to spend the afternoon when visiting the campus.

Gallery Bergen II

Please visit the Bergen Community College for future shows.

Gallery Bergen recently showed, “Belongings: Photographs at the Borders of Citizenship” exhibition which is showing the works of Dorothea Lange, Ansel Adams and Clem Albers (1942) and Tamara Merino (2018). This exhibition pairs two sets of photographic records, two tragic experiences of people on two sides of the US border, separated by seventy-five years in America’s cultural and political struggle over who belongs and who doesn’t (Bergen Gallery Press Release).

Gallery Bergen

A former exhibition was “Lines of Fire/Lines of Ice” . This exhibition is art being presented to get us to think of our effects on nature. The Gallery Bergen is presenting art that might help us change our views of ourselves in the world (Curator).

gallery bergen V

Curator’s Statement:

“It is 2019. Fires advance; glaciers retreat. Oceans rise; deserts spread. The Homo sapiens population grows exponentially; entire species of fish, mollusks, insects, amphibians and birds perish each day. Lines are being redrawn on the surface of the earth-lines that can be seen from space. Yes these same lines are often blurred or erased when viewed through the lens of ideology”-Tim Blunk, Curator.

See Performance Artist Jaanika Peerna perform the ‘Glacier Elegy’ similar to the one she did at opening night.

The Gallery is curated by Professor Tim Blunk, Director Gallery Bergen.

In April 2019, the Student Art Show is going on in the Gallery. This was where students were showing off their end of the semester projects.

Gallery Bergen VI

Student Show at Gallery Bergen

A former show by Hackensack-based artist Lauren Bettini, whose exhibition “On the Mend” was an exploration of the female body, displaying themes of “Women’s work” through accounts of women who bear scars, both physically and emotionally. This unique installation utilizes the entirely of the gallery, literally tying together embroidery of surgical procedures are “mended” through the appearance of the physical act of sewing. The exhibition is a platform to celebrate the beauty of their altered bodies while women stand strong together to share their stories.

Lauren Bettini

Artist Lauren Bettini

It is an interesting take on what we endure in life and how we sometimes hide it from society.

Lauren Bettini II

“On the Mend” Exhibition Summer 2019

The mounted three-dimensional castings of woman’s hands are used to symbolize a movement of women joining together, sharing their stories and helping each other heal. This platform to honor women who have survived medical surgeries, celebrates the beauty of their altered bodies and pays homage to centuries of women who have created are in the form of sewing and embroidering (Gallery Bergen Promotional packet).

The recent ‘NJSeoul: New Art from the Korean Diaspora’ that  opened for the Fall of 2019. The show was a combination of paintings, pictures and visual art from five different Korean artists. The show also features video art and interesting short films.

Gallery Bergen VII.jpg

New show from September 12th-October 31st 2019

Some information of the Exhibition on Studio Bergen

The exhibition that opened for the Fall semester 2019 is the ‘(Pro) Found Objects’, the Bergen Community College Faculty Exhibition. The exhibition features works from 19 different Professor/Artists whose work includes statuary, photos, paintings, video art and clothing construction.

Gallery Bergen Professor Show III.jpg

This painting is by Professor Juan Leon

Gallery Bergen Professor Show

This painting is by artist Juan Leon

Gallery Bergen Professor Show II

This painting is by Professor Ada Goldfeld

The opening night on November 14th 2019 featured a performance by the Music Department and a performance by the head of the Drama Department from the upcoming show “I do, I do”. Then everyone had time to look over the art before a light reception at the end of the evening.

Opening in the Spring of 2020, Gallery Bergen is featuring “Ornithology: Patterns of Flight” that features birds in flight, sound and behavior. I saw the exhibition as man’s perception of birds at play and at rest and our concept of aviation in terms to humans. How do we communicate with the natural world, if we can and how do we relate as humans to the natural world.

Gallery Bergen Birds

‘Moche-Bird Runner’ by Susan Haviland

The art was everything from visual to video and showed the artist’s interpretation of the bird world. This was my favorite piece in the show.

Gallery Bergen Birds V

‘Ashes to Gold’ by Caroline Bergonzi

Each artist had a unique take on their art.

Gallery Bergen Birds II

‘Deep Song’ by Susan Haviland

During the musical performance part of the opening, one of the artist’s in the exhibition teamed up with another musician and performed their concept of birds in flight. To that our Dance Department created a performance that encompassed the whole gallery.

Gallery Bergen Birds IV

Our Adjunct Dance Professor’s performed that night

Gallery Bergen Birds III

Professor Justin Watrel at Gallery Bergen Opening

Here I am admiring the art that night. It was a wonderful exhibition. The Gallery Openings are an interesting night of art and music. The receptions are not bad either. Our Culinary Department does a nice job with appetizers and desserts.

This time lapse on YouTube is from the opening night of ‘Patterns of Flight’ at Bergen Community College

With the Gallery Bergen closed with campus being closed, Curator Tim Blunk created this  YouTube video “20Big20: Quarantine and Protest” on the pandemic and racial strife:

Another exhibition that the College has is BCCAnimation:

In the era of COVID, Gallery Bergen has created new exhibitions via YouTube. This is for the new “Black Lives Matter @BCC: Photographs from the Live Protest”:

These are photos from all over the country during the Summer of 2020 protests.

Gallery Bergen recently hosted the Student Exhibition 2021 virtually:

The creative approach to Gallery Bergen in the era of COVID keeps us active.

When Gallery Bergen reopened in 2021, the first big exhibition was “The Ramapough Nation: Excavating Identity”, the art of the nation.

The exhibition featured works by local Native American artists.

The exhibition contained visual arts by local indigenous artists, panel discussions (see Facebook page) and gallery talks.

The new exhibition that recently opened in the Fall 2021 is “Zoom Out: Works from Bergen Community College Artists”, a faculty show of works from the professors from the art department.

“Zoom Out” exhibition

Works from the Opening Night:

The opening night of “Zoom Out” with works in the visual arts

The “Zoom Out” exhibition was a selection of faculty works in the visual arts, painting, graphics and sculpture. One professor created an interesting piece of video art reworking the movie “Psycho” by Alfred Hitchcock.

The video creation on the movie “Psycho”

New Works from “Zoom Out”

Work by curator and Professor Tim Blunk

In the Spring of 2022, Gallery Bergen has exhibited “Art in History: the photographers of the Great Depression”, with photos from the Depression era of the 1930’s. It was a heart-breaking display of a very dark time in our country’s history. I could see that many people don’t realize that this was only 80 years ago. It gave a view into the lives ordinary people whose lives were affected by the falling economy. Lives were upended by things like the Stock Market Crash and the Dust Bowl.

“Art in History: the photographers of the Great Depression” exhibition

The photographers were part of the WPA where people from the arts part of the government program were to keep artisans working during the Great Depression. The works are a heartbreaking reminder of how fast life can change.

I was lucky that I got to sit in on Professor Tim Blunk’s class that afternoon for the lecture on the exhibition. It is scary how much these students didn’t learn in high school about this time. What amazed me was that how much this is still going on not just all over the world but in our own state as well. I have travelled to parts of the New Jersey that remind me of these pictures.

The BCC Student Art Show 2022 was the first time in two years the students got to showcase their work in the Gallery

Asian Awareness Month in 2022 brought interesting speakers and engaging movies to Gallery Bergen.

The lectures and independent films were very interesting and brought wonderful conversations to Gallery Bergen during the celebrated month of April.

In June of 2022, I attended the opening of the “Reflection/Refraction/Manhattan: Photographs by Jin Hong Kim” exhibition at Gallery Bergen, celebrating this local Korean-American photographer/artist. Each of the works was from a section of Manhattan from the Hudson Yards to Midtown to Lower Manhattan giving a almost surrealist look at the City in the Post-COVID era. It was as if the artist asked us to look at Manhattan again from a different lense or perspective.

The new exhibition by local photographer Jinhong Kim

Each of the pictures looked as one patron said, “like something that Salvador Dali might do.” It gave buildings in Manhattan movement and asked us to look at them a second time.

The Exhibition “Pulse: Resonating Earth” by artist Poramit Thantapalit is very engaging and fascinating to walk through.

From the Gallery Bergen Website:

During the fall of 2022, Gallery Bergen will be transformed into an aquatic installation by Thai artist Poramit Thantapalit. His medium is trash – as in found plastic bottles, plastic bags, and other refuse that might have as easily found its way into the Hackensack River, a landfill, or the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Instead, Poramit breathes life into these materials, shaping luminous organic sculptures that undulate and pulse from the ceiling and wall. They make the viewer forget their origins in their newly aggregated forms.

There is a genre referred to as eco-art, or “trash art,” but this is something very different. “Jackson Pollock painted with house paint, but he wasn’t a house painter,” says Gallery Bergen director and curator Tim Blunk. “Poramit’s deft artistic hand and his understanding of transforming quantity into quality creates work that transcends its materials.” PULSE: Resonating Earth will be embellished with several performance events, including the scheduled opening gala on September 22 and its closing on December 8. Both will include dance performance pieces by BCC faculty member Lynn Needle and her Art of Motion Dance Theatre and Steinway pianist Carolyn Enger. The opening will include excerpts from Needle’s work, The Poseidon Project – An Aquatic Myth – a suite with live music and dance, including narrated choreographed sections, each connecting to aquatic myth, legend, and nature.

Pictures from the Exhibition:

Story from the exhibition on Land Acknowledgement.

The exhibition:

All the art displays of Poramit Thantapalit’s work in Gallery Bergen

Picture One:

Beautiful works

Picture Two:

Picture Three:

Picture Five:

Picture Six:

The colorful interactive art of Gallery Bergen in 2022 of artist Poramit Thantapalit

The Fritz Behnke Historical Museum of Paramus                330 Paramus Road                                      Paramus, NJ 07652

The Fritz Behnke Historical Museum of Paramus 330 Paramus Road Paramus, NJ 07652

The Fritz Behnke Historical Museum of Paramus

330 Paramus Road

Paramus, NJ  07652

(201) 445-1804


Open: Sunday-1:00pm-5:00pm

Fee-Free with donations

TripAdvisor Review:



Driving Directions:

From Highway 17 & 4 proceed west on Route 4 approximately 1 mile to Paramus Road. Exit toward Ridgewood. Continue north through the traffic light. Pass a cemetery and a golf course. The museum is next on the right.

I visited The Fritz Behnke Historical Museum of Paramus, NJ the other day after passing it for many years and found a smaller museum that told the history of Paramus, NJ. It has interesting displays on the agricultural past of the County of Bergen. Fred Behnke, the founder’s son, took me on the tour of his father’s masterpiece and I found the displays to be interesting and engaging. He showed me equipment that had been in his family for generations and some of the Indian artifacts that his family had found on the property which gave more depth to the history of the property as it had been farmed by local Native American tribes.

Fritz Behnke Museum III

The museum is open once a week and is very interesting dealing with local history

Take the time to visit the basement and watch their history video. It is very interesting short on the history of the museum and the borough of Paramus. If you are from Bergen County and grew up here in the 70’s and 80’s, you will recognize a lot of the changes that have happened over the last forty years. It is a real reflection on the changes of Bergen County, NJ over the last 100 years. The museum is only open on Sunday’s so plan accordingly.

The Fritz Behnke Historical Museum contains 2 floors of artifacts dating back to the early 1900’s when there were many farms in the Bergen County area.

The main floor had an exhibit of Police and Fire Department memorabilia, an being the exhibit displaying  the history of Bergen Pines County Hospital and a display of an old school room. There is an area showing household cleaning and laundry items, including one of the first electric washing machines, a duplicate of which is at the Smithsonian Museum. The kitchen area displays many old devices, used in cooking and includes an old ice box and a wood-burning stove as well as a early gas stove. The Kids Room contains many old toys such as strap-on ice and roller skates, dolls, doll houses and cast metal farm tractors. In the parlor area there are old wind up phonographs and a church organ. In the corridors there are many photographs showing the Paramus of yesteryear.

Fritz Behnke Museum II

The history of Paramus, NJ is explained at the museum

On the lower lever is an interesting 12-minute video presentations on the history of Paramus. There are also displays of woodworking, blacksmithing and farming. The farm display depicts the two distinct differences in Paramus farming that of the celery farms in the muck soil on the west side of town and vegetable farms in the brown soil on the east side of town. There are many different farming items displayed including an egg sorting machine and a shovel hand carved from one piece of wood.

Special Notes in History provided by the museum:

The History of Sprout Brook: Long before Route 17 was built through the center of Paramus, Sprout Brook also ran north to south through meadows and woodland, which abounded with wildlife. Beginning in the northwest, it rambled through the rich black soil or ‘muck’ that had once been a lake bottom. As farmers discovered the rich soil, they dug ditches off the brook to irrigate their celery farms. At that time, Paramus was nationally known for its celery farm production. As the water flowed southeast, it bordered on higher ground called ‘upland’, which was also fertile soil conducive to growing a variety of vegetables like corn, tomatoes and cabbage.

In the early Spring, the farmers planted their seed in greenhouses and waited until the last frost passed. The plants were then transported outside to the filed where they were cultivated and watered until they became mature enough to harvest. Produce was taken by horse and wagon and later by truck crossing the Hudson river via ferry board to the markets in New York City. After all the produce was sold, they returned home late in the evening only to rise early the next morning to begin preparing the vegetables to take to market that night. It was a ‘family affair’ and farmers often helped each other with their harvests when extra hands were needed.

During the 1940’s and 1950’s, roadside stand selling produce for extra income was common. Families driving through Paramus from New York City often frequented these produce stands along Route 4, Ridgewood Avenue, Paramus Road and Farview Avenue.

Sprout Brook is an integral part of the history of Paramus. It divided the Borough’s two school districts; the children living east of the Sprout Brook attended Farview School and Hackensack High School and those west of Sprout Brook attended Midland School and Ridgewood High School. In later years, two middle schools were built and appropriately named “Eastbrook” and “Westbrook”. In 1957, Paramus High School was built bringing the town together in one school. Voting districts were also determined by residents living east and west of Sprout Brook.

History of the Lenape Indians: The Indians of Bergen County, the Lenni Lenape Indians settled in the area for many reasons. The climate was ideal all year so they could survive during the winter months. Also the Ramapo Mountains made an ideal place to live. The shale rock overhangs were like caves that provided protection from the weather. There was abundant water in the area from the Hackensack and Saddle Rivers, Sprout Brook and many ponds that provided good fishing and navigation.

The wild animals in the area came to drink at these waterways thus providing great opportunities fro hunting. The land was also fertile, which made for good farming such as corn (or Maize) and other root crops. These crops attracted many birds such as quail, pheasant and of course, the wild turkey which hare still in the area today.

Our early settlers traded with the Indians. Mrs. Lawrence, the one room school teacher was of Indian descent. As the early farmers in the area plowed their fields, they found arrowheads, tomahawks and grinding stones. The Lenni Lenape called this area “Perapepus”, which meant rich or fertile land. Through the years, the name changed several times until it became Paramus.

The museum also has the history of the Paramus Fire and Police Departments as well as the early Bergen Pines Hospital.

*This little gem of a museum is only open one day a week but can be opened to accommodate groups so please call the museum for details. The museum is free to the public but please leave a donation to help with the costs of the museum. It is well worth the trip if you like the history early farming communities or want the know the history of Bergen County.