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New Exhibit at NECC ArtSpace Explores Spirits

Submitted by on January 26, 2024 – 5:05 pm

Haverhill, MA (January 26) – Installation is complete on the newest exhibition in the Linda Hummel-Shea ArtSpace on the Haverhill Campus of Northern Essex Community College. Passing Spirits showcases works by artist Maria L. Denjongpa. The Beverley-based artist explores the spirits through her papier mache sculptures.

#9: Golden anniversary, 2024, papier mache, acrylic paint

“I am interested in spirits–meaning the terrors, joys, grief, pride, and surprises– that reside in the human heart. I am curious about their essence: their gestures, colors, and shapes,” says Denjongpa. “My art is not cerebral. It arrives from turning off thinking so that whatever is hidden in the branches of trees or the corners of a room can find its natural form.”

Denjongpa began making masks, puppets and sculptures when she was thirteen.  After graduating from college with a degree in Anthropology, she married a man from the Eastern Himalayas and went there to live and teach. Her work is inspired by Sikkimese spirit houses, monastic murals, bodhisattva masks and being in the classroom with children.

#2:Forest dancer, 2023, bark, papier mache, acrylic paint

“There is something magical about papier mache: the fact that old newspaper—flat, two-dimensional, and full of words—can be transformed into three–dimensional forms that embody living spirits,” she shares.

Passing Spirits is open now and runs through February 29.

The show is presented by the NECC Liberal Arts Division and the Art Department. The Linda Hummel-Shea ArtSpace is located on the first floor of the Bentley Library. Gallery events are free and open to the public. For more information on this exhibition, contact Michelle Carter or Marc Mannheimer.


Gallery Hours:
Monday-Thursday: 8 AM – 8 PM
Friday: 8 AM – 4 PM
Saturday and Sunday: closed