Botanical Watercolors at Oliver Wolcott Library for Sept. & Oct.

Located in the historic heart of Litchfield, the Oliver Wolcott Library has a long and fascinating history. The library was founded in 1862 and was named in honor of a generous donation from J. Huntington Wolcott, grandson of Oliver Wolcott, a signer of the Declaration of Independence and the Articles of Confederation. His son, Oliver Wolcott served as Secretary of the Treasury under President George Washington and John Adams as Governor of Connecticut.

The Oliver Wolcott Library is located in a house built by Elijah Wadsworth in 1799. Parties were frequently held in the ballroom on the second floor. It is said that President George Washington danced his last minuet in Litchfield in that ballroom. The ballroom was restored by the Society of Colonial Wars and can be viewed upon request.

Over the years the Library has expanded. A modern structure was added by Eliot Noyes who studied at Harvard and went on to become the Director of the Department of Industrial Design at MOMA in New York. Noyes love of modern design, open spaces and geometry is evident in this expansion that marries a historic house with a modern structure.

Among the many programs offered by the Oliver Wolcott Library, art shows are always popular. From August 28th – October 26th the work of Molly O’Neill-Lally will be featured. The opening reception will be held on Thursday, September 6, from 5:00-7:00 p.m.

Molly O’Neill-Lally’s passion for watercolor painting began under the tutelage of internationally respected painter and illustrator, Arthur Getz, through the Washington Art Association. Years of gardening and encouragement from Getz to “paint what you see” motivated Molly to create watercolor paintings of the variety of flowers she has grown. Her gentle brush strokes, smooth shadows and translucent highlights capture the stunning beauty and delicate nature of every flower she paints.

Molly uses a dry brush watercolor technique and smooth hot pressed paper to achieve a clear representation of flowers during precise phases of growth. At times, she will incorporate different stages of development as well as colored pencil into her stunning botanical paintings. After years of owing a framing business, Molly frames and mats each of her paintings to compliment the individual flower.

In the summer, Molly works from live flowers taken from her garden; in the winter she works from photographs, art books and botanical studies to provide the correct information as to what a flower may look like at a certain point in its development.

The Oliver Wolcott Library is located on 160 South Street, Litchfield, CT. 06759. 860-567-8030.

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