Joe Evangelista and Ellen Pfendner Featured at the Cape May Artists’ Cooperative Gallery in November

Joe Evangelista- Stormy Surf

WEST CAPE MAY – Photographer Joe Evangelista and jewelry-maker Ellen Pfendner are featured for the month of November at the Cape May Artists’ Cooperative Gallery, 122 Sunset Blvd., West Cape May. Joe is featuring his award-winning landscapes of Cape May. Ellen recently mastered a new wire wrapping technique which is the focus of her work this month. A meet-the-artists reception is scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 12 from 2 to 6 p.m.

Joe Evangelista’s love of photography began as a youngster, but really materialized when he was discharged from the U.S. Army. He was attending Antonelli’s School of Photography in Philadelphia when a job opportunity at a local weekly newspaper in North Wildwood led him to become a photo journalist. The work was varied and interesting but he decided he needed to start his own studio. After a summer in New York studying portrait photography at Germain School of Photography, he opened “Evangelista Studio” in North Wildwood. Joe ran this full-service studio doing portraits, weddings and general photography for 13 years. Joe put down his camera and went into a career in law enforcement. After 27 years, it was time to retire and Joe went back to the medium he loved – photography. He started with portrait and wedding photography but made an adjustment and concentrated on sea and landscapes of the Cape May area. He had the great fortune of becoming a member of the Cape May Artists Cooperative Gallery in West Cape May where he is able to display his work. Joe also does local craft and art shows where people can see his images.

Ellen G. Pfendner is a Cape May Point resident. Born and raised in Massachusetts and spending summers on Cape Cod instilled in her a love of the ocean and all things related to the beach and nature. A graduate of Simmons College (Boston MA) with a degree in Biology and Chemistry and with Ph.D. in Micro and Molecular Biology from the University of Pennsylvania, she has worked at the University of Pennsylvania, Einstein Medical Center, and was on the faculty of Thomas Jefferson University. She now has more time to exercise the creative part of her brain, and makes jewelry using beads inherited from her mother-in-law. After a few courses at the local community college in the basics, she now happily attends Beadfest events. She learned glass blowing at WheatonArts and set up a bead making studio in her home. She’s had no other formal training as an artist, but has a passion for making jewelry and blowing glass. Ellen says, “I love all things glass and I love to create jewelry with beautiful colors and textures using natural themes or using very bright colorful beads.” She also can sew and crochet, and does some stained glass work, but making glass beads and jewelry is her passion.

The Cape May Artists’ Cooperative Gallery is the only artists’ cooperative in Cape May County. Owned and operated by its members, it carries a full selection of members’ work, including Lee Hajduk, a self-taught photographer who purchased her first camera at the age of 15. Captivated by the natural world, she earned BS in biology from Upsala College and a MS in Zoology from Rutgers University. Her camera helped her capture images of birds, flowers, insects, reptiles and mammals for later identification and to be cataloged as part of her curriculum. From there, her passion grew into composing and capturing the beauty of wildlife and the outdoors. An avid birder, Lee uses her camera to help confirm the identity of those tough birds seen in the field.

The gallery includes original paintings and photography and prints, jewelry, stained and fused glass, works in wood and bird carvings, clay and works in paper, fiber arts, furniture and mosaics. The gallery is open Fridays, Mondays and Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Credit cards are accepted. Parking is available behind the gallery. For information, call (609) 435-5253 or visit