Current Show:

The Jonestown Massacre and Other Human Mysteries
by Ken Weir

February 5-28, 2015

Opening Reception Thursday, February 5th 6-8pm
Artist's Talk on Third Thursday, February 19th 7-8pm

Ken Weir offers unusual paintings for his 4th solo show at the Cooperative Gallery. The Jonestown Massacre, a 7 ½’ x 4’ painting revisits a moment we can never forget. On November 18, 1978 the members of Jim Jones’ religious group, the People’s Temple, committed mass suicide by ingesting a cyanide laced drink under orders from their leader, Jim Jones. The painting shows individuals at various moments of contemplating their drink and their fate. Ken Weir explains, “We’re taught that by taking a pill or drinking a potion, we’ll be healed.” The painting doesn’t present a single story, rather it presents nine stories of nine individuals, trusting, yet bullied into a horrible fate.

Other paintings in the February show, also large, depict a girl painting a rose, a mother and daughter, a daughter and father and in one mysterious scene, a thug, a writer and a singer. This is a painting that foreshadows a murder story with two endings—depicted in two additional paintings. The artist hopes to involve the viewer in the creative process of explaining what he/she sees. Weir says, “Modern art has distanced itself from story while pushing the abstract, the shocking, or the hyper-realistic. By bringing mystery and humanity back into art, I hope to bring the viewers into a conversation with the art.” He continues, “Viewers don’t always know how to talk about a purely abstract design, but they can easily agree or disagree with a story or make up their own.”

Weir studied with Paul Georges at the New York Studio School. Georges was an abstract expressionist turned figurative painter who emphasized the drama possible with figurative art.

Smiley face The Jonestown Massacre, oil 7.5'x4'

Smiley face
Girl Painting a Rose, oil 4'x4'

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The Cooperative Gallery 213 is a popular stop on the First Friday Art Walk and a member of the Gorgeous Washington Association. The gallery has played an important role in the arts renaissance in downtown Binghamton for the past 11 years. Regular gallery hours are Fridays 3-6 pm and Saturdays 12-4 pm and by appointment with the exhibiting artists. Contact the gallery at and check out events listings at either or the calendar at
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The Cooperative Gallery 213 has been a pioneering presence on State Street, now the hub of the arts renaissance in Binghamton. Cooperative Gallery 213 is a popular stop on the highly successful First Friday Art Walks which occur monthly from 3 to 9 pm. The gallery is open every Friday 3-6 pm, every Saturday noon-4 pm and by appointment with the featured artist or any member.

Cooperative Gallery 213
213 State Street
Binghamton, New York 1390
(607) 724-3462

Gallery hours:
Fridays 3-6 p.m.
First Fridays 3-9 p.m.
Saturdays 12-4 p.m.

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