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Kean University

Contemporary Artist Ricardo Roig Celebrates Solo Exhibition with Art Scholarship Announcement at Kean University

Artist Ricardo Roig displays a piece of his art in his studio

Artist Ricardo Roig ’08, Kean University alumnus and artist-in-residence, is furthering his commitment to the University with the creation of the Roig Family Art Scholarship. 

The scholarship, created by Roig and his family, was announced at the January 25 opening of his solo exhibition, Layers of Life. Offering a wide range of mediums for all to see and experience, the exhibition is open in the Karl and Helen Burger Gallery located in the Center for Academic Success on Kean’s Union campus.

The Roig Family Art Scholarship is an endowed fund providing scholarships for students majoring in fine arts at Kean. 

“To be able to do this, and have my family’s name be part of a scholarship, in perpetuity, to help others, is such an honor and brings us so much joy,” said Roig, a former Westfield elementary art teacher. “My grandfather, whom I'm named after and who immigrated to the U.S. from Cuba, worked with his hands to make a better life for his family. His actions have inspired me to take this step and create a legacy for my sons through aiding the development of future fine artists at Kean University.”

A contemporary fine artist, Roig features his signature hand-cut art, a style he developed as a student at Kean, large-scale collage and works on canvas in the exhibition. His newest oil painting, “Night on the Grand Canal, Venice," offers the viewer a very tactile immersion into the moment when the moonlight graces the surface of the water to reveal colorful ripples of reflections through Roig's energetic brushwork. 

“This exhibition highlights moments of inspiration that inform Roig’s art,” said Lynette Zimmerman, Ed.D., associate vice president of the Liberty Hall Academic Center and Galleries at Kean. “The subject matter offers viewers a glimpse into his passion and process. Through his work, he has connected with our students and the Kean community, making a positive impact. We look forward to continuing that work this spring.” 

With Roig's largest and newly available collage, "Opening Night," the viewer is transported through the emotions Roig experienced as a guest artist in the Edition Hotel Miami, this past December during Art Basel. The opportunity to showcase his artistic process in partnership with an incredible hospitality team brought excitement and connection to a new audience. These feelings, colors, textures and experiences gave life to this seven-foot-by-four-foot masterwork made from more than 17 years of hand-cut prints. 

William Miller, chief executive officer of the Kean University Foundation, expressed the Foundation’s gratitude for the endowed scholarship that will help future Kean students.

“The establishment of the Roig Family Art Scholarship is a testament to Michelle [his wife] and Ricardo’s passion for the arts and the opportunity Kean University and the Galleries at Kean present to fine art students for future generations,” Miller said. “We are tremendously grateful for their generosity and know that it will provide support and life-changing impact to our students for years to come.” 

Layers of Life was curated by Zimmerman and will be on display through Friday, May 24, in Kean’s Karl and Helen Burger Gallery, located at 1000 Morris Avenue, Union, N.J. Visit for more information.