Between Two Worlds the Photography of Nell Dorr in Washington

Between Two Worlds: The Photography of Nell Dorr is a retrospective exhibit commemoratong the 50th anniversary of the Horace Mann School’s John Dorr Nature Laboratory in Washington and the 75th anniversary of the Dorr Foundation. Nell Dorr’s photographs and artifacts from the Massillon Museum in Ohio, the Amon Carter Museum of American Art in Texas, and area residents are featured in this show. New touch screen technology has been incorporated into the exhibit allowing visitors to watch friends and descendants share their stories about Nell Dorr and the lasting impact that she made on their lives and the town of Washington.

Nell Dorr (1893-1988); In the Meadow; ca. 1954; Gelatin silver print; Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Gift of the Estate of Nell Dorr; P1990.45.231

Nell Dorr (1893-1988); In the Meadow; ca. 1954; Gelatin silver print; Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Gift of the Estate of Nell Dorr; P1990.45.231

In the Meadow; ca. 1954; Gelatin silver print; Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Gift of the Estate of Nell Dorr; P1990.45.231″ width=”300″ height=”234″ class=”size-full wp-image-3839″ /> Nell Dorr (1893-1988); In the Meadow; ca. 1954; Gelatin silver print; Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Gift of the Estate of Nell Dorr; P1990.45.231[/caption]

Nell Dorr, celebrated photographer and Washington resident from 1955 until her death in 1988, is best known for her soft-focus depictions of motherhood, family, and children. She first gained notice for her 1934 exhibition at Delphic Studios in New York City, Famous Men, which included images of Carl Sandburg and the man who would become her husband, inventor John Van Nostrand Dorr. Her lifelong dear friend, the actress Lillian Gish, provided entree into the world of well-known individuals.

Nell Dorr (1893-1988); Raphael Madonna; 1940; Gelatin silver print; Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Gift of the Estate of Nell Dorr; P1990.45.206

Nell Dorr (1893-1988); Raphael Madonna; 1940; Gelatin silver print; Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Gift of the Estate of Nell Dorr; P1990.45.206

The other side of Dorr’s artwork features more imaginary settings, children as fairy-like creatures in beautiful natural settings—sometimes mangrove swamps in Florida, other times New England woodlands. Later she created abstract photograms in her darkroom, creating imaginary scenes often with just the light of a kitchen match to expose the images.

Nell Dorr (1893-1988); Carl Sandburg; 1930; Gelatin silver print; Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Gift of the Estate of Nell Dorr; P1990.45.260

Nell Dorr (1893-1988); Carl Sandburg; 1930; Gelatin silver print; Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Gift of the Estate of Nell Dorr; P1990.45.260

Between Two Worlds: The Photography of Nell Dorr is a traveling exhibition organized by the Massillon Museum. The exhibit and program series has been made possible by a grant from the Dorr Foundation. The exhibit will be on display on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m, and on Sundays from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m, through Saturday, October 31, 2015. Admission is free. The Gunn Museum is located at 5 Wykeham Road, at the intersection of Rt. 47 and Wykeham Road, on Washington Green. Call 860-868-7756 or view www.gunnlibrary.org for more information.

For area event information and more www.litchfieldhills.com

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