Meet Ed Vebell. He is 96, a nonagenarian, and he’s probably lived a more interesting life than you have. Like most of your older relatives Ed has stories to tell, but his span the globe, span time, and span famous events and his work will be presented at the Westport Historical Society through April 28, 2018.
It may sound cliché but it all started when Ed was shipped off to war. Ed nearly started out as an aircraft gunner, an occupation with a notoriously short lifespan, but when his superiors were alerted to his artistic ability he was quickly transferred to the US Army’s military newspaper, Stars and Stripes, as a field illustrator. As it turns out, illustrating battles was only the beginning of a decade’s long journey through odd, extraordinary and potentially lethal experiences.
Mr. Vebell spent years overseas in exotic places like Morocco and the cabarets of Paris. His decades as an illustrator, for publications like Sports Illustrated and Reader’s Digest,connected him with a cavalcade of characters including Grace Kelly and Matisse. Oh, and did we mention he also competed at the 1952 Olympics in fencing?
Like any traveler he collected some souvenirs along the way. A century gives you opportunities to acquire interesting life experiences and trinkets; only Ed’s trinkets aren’t the knick knacks you find in grandma’s attic but treasures like Buffalo Bill’s hat and a spear from the Maasai, an African lion hunter tribe.
Join us and become immersed in the life of arguably Westport’s most interesting man, and be sure to look for Ed’s recently published book “An Artist at War”. Signed copies will be available for sale at the exhibit opening and in our gift shop.
The Curious Case of Ed Vebell, runs through April 28 @ Westport Historical Society, 25 Avery Place across from Town Hall. Donations Accepted, For more information call 203-222-1424 or vistiwestporthistory.org.