Fine Artist Marie A. Roberts
Snake oil and sideshows are normal to me. My father’s family was involved in early 20th Century Coney Island; my grandfather was acting battalion chief of the Coney Island District and Uncles Harry and Guy were at Dreamland the night of the fire. My Uncle Lester and my father worked at the Dreamland Circus Sideshow in the 1920’s.
Coney is so peopled with ghosts and memories, there is no place in Coney Island that is totally mine, except for Coney Island USA.
That not for profit arts center is a haven where both sides of my life can co exist – the academic and the sideshow. It is the only place in the earth where I feel back at home, with my relatives (deceased) gathered around. Coney Island USA lets me paint as much as I want. Making the corner of West 12th and Surf beautiful is a testament to my family, and a challenge to my present as an artist.