Westport CT Arts Center Sponsors Facebook Contest

Westport Arts Center Sponsors Facebook Contest Westport Arts Center is offering through Facebook a chance to win artwork by three well-known local artists: Janine Brown, Miggs Burroughs and Nina Bentley. The artists have generously donated original works of art to help the Westport Arts Center build a fanbase. “Long-time WAC patron and Fairfield-based artist, Janine Brown, initiated this idea in an effort to help the Arts Center build its social media presence,” said Alyssa Crouse, Westport Arts Center marketing director. “Facebook is an excellent way for us to communicate information instantaneously to people in the community, share links, and network in a unique way. We invite everyone in Westport and beyond to join WAC’s growing network of fans and enter this exciting contest to win original works of art by artists that are recognized internationally.”

To enter the contest, log onto your Facebook Profile at http://www.facebook.com. In the search window, type in “Westport Arts Center” and click on the option that comes up in the search window. At the Westport Arts Center Facebook, page click “Like” on the top of the page. Those who are already WAC fans will be automatically entered into the contest.

Three winners will be randomly selected in a drawing and announced via Facebook on Thursday, October 1.

The Westport Arts Center is a visual and performing arts organization dedicated to creating arts experiences that enrich the lives of area residents and the entire community. The Westport Arts Center is supported with funds from the Arthur and Heida Hermanns Holde Foundation, Inc., the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism, 4th Row Films, Thomas and Jeanne Elmezzi Private Foundation, Fairfield County Bank, Fairfield County Community Foundation, Gault, Inc., GWAY Marketing Gymnasium, Independent Film Channel, Melissa and Doug, Moffly Media, New Alliance Bank, Pepperidge Farm, Inc., U.S. Trust, Bank of America Private Wealth Management, Westport Resources, Westport Sunrise Rotary, Young Voices Program, Xerox Foundation, and WSHU Public Radio Group.

For information, contact Westport Arts Center at 203-222-7070 or go to the website at ww.westportartscenter.org. Gallery hours are Monday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, 12 p.m. to 4 p.m., at 51 Riverside Avenue, Westport, CT.

Fall Impressionist Painting Workshop at Weir Farm Wilton CT

There has been a tradition of Impressionist painting at Weir Farm National Historic Site since Julian Alden Weir, the father of American Impressionism, acquired this rural, rustic retreat in Branchville, Connecticut in 1882.

To honor as well as to continue this tradition, Weir Farm National Historic Site will be offering a two-day Fall Impressionist Painting Workshop on Saturday and Sunday October 1 and 2 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. This workshop is designed for intermediate and advanced art students and artists interested in learning more about the science and poetry of Impressionist landscape painting.

Participants must have a basic understanding of their selected art form and be able to handle their own equipment for plein air fieldwork as well as for the studio workshop environment.

Workshops will include introductory classroom lectures, field demonstrations, and critique of the participant’s artwork. Registration for this workshop is free, but space is limited to twelve artists, so please call early to secure a spot!

First choice will be given to artists who have not participated in a previous Impressionist Painting Workshop at Weir Farm National Historic Site. However, for those artists who wish to return, names will be placed on a wait-list and be considered as space allows.


To register or for more information, please call (203) 834-1896 ext.10. This workshop is just one in a series that will be offered at Weir Farm National Historic Site.

The How to be an Impressionist Painter Workshop Series will be taught by Impressionist artist and educator Dmitri Wright, of Greenwich, Connecticut. Mr. Wright seeks to continue the Impressionist discipline through his preservation and progress of American Impressionism as the artist-in-residence of the Historical Society of the Town of Greenwich and as an instructor of Impressionist drawing and painting at the Greenwich Art Society, Silvermine School of Art, and Weir Farm National Historic Site.

Visitors to Weir Farm National Historic Site are always invited to set up their easels and paint this unspoiled landscape that has inspired impressionists for years.

About Weir Farm

Weir Farm National Historic Site was home to three generations of American artists. Julian Alden Weir, a leading figure in American art and the development of American Impressionism, acquired the farm in 1882. After Weir, the artistic legacy was continued by his daughter, painter Dorothy Weir Young and her husband, sculptor Mahonri Young, followed by New England painters Sperry and Doris Andrews. Today, the 60-acre farm, which includes the Weir House, Weir and Young Studios, barns, gardens, and Weir Pond, is one of the nation’s finest remaining landscapes of American art. For more information about Weir Farm National Historic Site or the National Park Service, please visit http://www.nps.gov/wefa or call (203) 834-1896.

Birds in Their Habitat Art Exhibition at Birdcraft in Fairfield Connecticut Sept. 24 & 25

Connecticut Audubon Society is bringing together talented artists from around the country who specialize in avian art during its second annual Birds In Their Habitat juried artists’ exhibition and sale at Birdcraft located on 2325 Burr Rd. in Fairfield Connecticut. This annual event is taking place September 23-25.

Twenty one artists working in a variety of media have been selected to display and sell their works. Jury selection of participating artists was based upon technique, execution, quality and uniqueness of work. The exhibition will illustrate that wildlife artists are committed to close observation and rendering fine artworks so that others may recognize the beauty of our natural world. Media includes: painting, photography, sculpture, printmaking, wood carving and fine art crafts. In addition to the art show, live birds of prey will be on hand for live demonstrations. Refreshments will be provided by the Butterfly Garden Cafe Committee.

This year’s Juried Show and Sale will feature the following Painters: Sue deLearie Adair: Etching, Del-Bourree Bach: Acrylic,
Wendy Brockman: Graphite and Watercolor, Mary Christiansen: Gouache and Graphite, Michael DiGiorgio: Watercolor and Oil,
Katie Lee: Graphite and Acrylic, Carol McArdle: Oil and Acrylic, Sharon Rowley Morgio: Oil and Watercolor, Sean Murtha: Oil and Watercolor, Dorie Petrochko: Watercolor, Kelly Leahy Radding: Gouache and Watercolor, Carolyn K. Smith: Graphite and Watercolor, Linda Thomas: Watercolor and Oil, and Patricia J. Wynne: Colored Pencil and Etching. Photographers featured at the show include: Paige Alexander, Michael Amodeo, Lori Bolle, and Margaret Harris. The pottery works of Judith Taylor and the Woodcarving of Roscoc Condon and Bill Rice will also be highlighted.

In addition, Connecticut Audubon Society has selected Floyd Scholz as its 2011 “artist of the year.” A professional carver since 1983 and in his fortyfirst year of carving, Floyd Scholz is universally recognized as a top carver of birds in the world. His portrayal of eagles, hawks, owls and many other large birds has won him a large international following and many top awards at major shows throughout the country. When not in his studio, traveling and doing essential field studies of birds take up most of his time.

The Preview Party is Friday, September 23 from 6:30 to 9:30 at Birdcraft located on 2325 Burr Street in Fairfield CT. The Show and Sale opens to the general public on Saturday, September 24 and Sunday, September 25 from 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM; adults are $5.00 and children under 10 are free. Proceeds from this event will benefit educational programs in the Fairfield region. For additional information, call 203-259-6305 ext. 109 or visit http://www.ctaudubon.org.

About Birdcraft Museum

Founded in 1914, Birdcraft is the first private bird sanctuary in the United States. This six-acre site was originally planted as a refuge to attract, harbor, and feed migratory and resident birds. To date, more than 120 bird species have been recorded on its grounds. Birdcraft’s focus today is offering premier natural history education programs and events for children and adults. It is also a federally-licensed Bird-Banding Station.

The Museum and Cottage were the original headquarters of the Connecticut Audubon Society. The Museum contains dioramas of Connecticut’s wildlife and habitats as they existed at the beginning of the 20th Century; the Four Seasons Room, which shows bird diversity over the years; the Frederick T. Bedford Collection of African Animals, and changing exhibits.

Bravo! A Century of Theatre in Fairfield County at the Fairfield Museum and History Center


Photo Caption: Katharine Hepburn as Portia in Merchant of Venice American Shakespeare Festival Theatre, Stratford. Photo Credit: Friedman-Abeles Courtesy, ASFTA Archives

When the curtain rises on Bravo! A Century of Theatre in Fairfield County, Fairfield Museum and History Center expects the crowds to be standing room only!

The six-month exhibition will begin with a special gala fundraising preview that will honor actor Christopher Plummer; playwright A.J. Gurney; director Mark Lamos; and costume designer Jane Greenwood on Saturday, September 24th at the Museum.

The honorary event chair is distinguished actor Joanne Woodward and the gala event chairs are Mary Jane Berrien, Lisa Callahan and Caroline Owens Crawford, all of Fairfield.

According to Director of Exhibitions and Programs for the Museum, Kathleen Bennewitz, Bravo! opens to the public on Sunday, September 25th and will run through Sunday, March 18th, 2012. “It will be the largest, first-of-a-kind exhibition the Museum has undertaken and will focus on the legacy of Fairfield County’s regional theatres, highlighting the Westport Country Playhouse, the White Barn Theatre and the American Shakespeare Festival Theatre and Academy,” she said.

Photo Caption: From left…Actors Maggie Lacey, Paul Newman and Ben Fox in the 2002 Westport Country Playhouse production of Our Town.

The Fairfield Museum and History Center is working in partnership with Martha S. LoMonaco, PhD, Professor of Visual and Performing Arts at Fairfield University, who is guest curating this exhibition. The Fairfield Museum has chosen this topic because Fairfield County holds a unique place in the history of American theatre and is rich with vibrant stories. “One of Connecticut’s important roles in the performing arts has been as an ‘incubator’ of emerging talent, providing a place where playwrights, actors and designers have had the freedom to experiment with groundbreaking ideas,” Bennewitz noted. “Over the past century, regional theatres have provided opportunities for internationally known artists to ‘try out’ their craft on a regional stage to allow audiences to experience the best in classical, popular and innovative dramatic art in a different setting outside New York. “Collectively, the productions have comprised a who’s who of stage artists like Katharine Hepburn, Alfred Drake, Morris Carnovsky, Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, Christopher Plummer, James Earl Jones, June Havoc, Robert Ryan and Bert Lahr, to mention only a few.

Bravo! will offer visitors a unique opportunity to hear the fascinating stories behind those actors and some of their landmark performances,” Bennewitz added. Bennewitz explained that interactive stations will provide a window to “behind the scenes” stage production and a colorful array of costumes, props, photographs and manuscripts will combine to illustrate Fairfield County’s theatrical history.

Photo Caption: The internationally famous and glamorous producer, Lucille Lortel, popularly known as the “Queen of Off-Broadway”, opened the White Barn Theatre in 1947 on her Westport estate in a former horse barn.

The Museum will also offer a slate of public education programs, related to Bravo!, where visitors may participate in activities, presentations and performances at the Museum and at partnering institutions. These programs will provide the experience of live theatre while inspiring the artists and audiences of tomorrow.”Another of the very exciting aspects of Bravo! is the partnerships we have established with more than 60 performing arts organizations throughout Fairfield County that will co-promote the exhibition and its related educational programs and performances,” Bennewitz said. “These partnerships will help make the exhibition and their own performances appealing.”

For more information on Bravo! A Century of Theatre in Fairfield County, its programs and the opening gala, visit http://www.fairfieldhistory.org or call 203-259-1598.

New Exhibition at the Center for Contemporary Printmaking Sept. 18- Nov. 13

The new exhibition, featuring artist Jack Boul, at The Center for Contemporary Printmaking (CCP) opens on Sunday, September 18 at 2 pm, and is on view through Sunday, November 13, 2011. This exhibition is a northeast premiere, for an accomplished artist and educator whose idyllic landscapes and scenes of everyday life at home and abroad are well known in the Washington DC area.

On view are over 150 works representing subject matter that has concerned and inspired this artist for decades. His signature cows and dancers appear throughout the Grace Ross Shanley Gallery at CCP, sometimes as printmaker’s monotypes, again as painter’s oils on board, and yet again as sculptor’s bronzes.

At the heart of the exhibition are Jack Boul’s monotypes, depicting dancers and cityscapes, cows and graineries, guitarists, musicians, and wait staff. “For this artist, there is no perceived hierarchy in his studio, where his two etching presses are a few feet away from his easel, always at the ready”, writes Anthony Kirk, curator of the exhibition. At CCP, Artistic Director and Master Printer Anthony Kirk helped the artist translate a number of his monotypes into photopolymer intaglio plates. Several recent editions made from these plates are included in the exhibition.

Jack Boul was born in Brooklyn, in 1927, the son of a Russian émigré father and a Romanian mother. Boul first studied art at the American Artist’s School, and then he studied at the Cornish School of Art, on the GI Bill. He moved to Washington DC, and continued his art studies at American University, where he eventually joined the art faculty, and was a distinguished professor for 15 years. In 1984, Boul was a founding faculty member of the new Washington Studio School, where he taught painting, drawing and monotype for ten years before retiring in 1994, to devote his full time to printmaking and painting. His first museum exhibition was held at the Baltimore Museum of Art, in 1994. The Corcoran Gallery of Art held a career retrospective for the artist, in 2000. The National Gallery of Art and the Metropolitan Museum of Art own impressions of his monotypes.

Exhibition-related Events

The Center for Contemporary Printmaking (CCP) is conducting a writing competition, based on the “soulful” works of Jack Boul, in collaboration with Ina Chadwick’s MouseMuse Productions, an arts partnering company located in Westport, CT. Entry deadline for the competition, named “Déjà Vu”, is September 23, 2011 at 5 pm. The winning works will be read by professional actors at a CCP festive awards ceremony and reception, on Sunday, November 13, 2011, at 4 pm. For more information, visit http://www.contemprints.org/writers.

Reception

The public is invited to the opening reception for the new exhibition, Jack Boul: Intimate Scale: Paintings, Sculptures, Monotypes Sunday, September 18, from 2 – 5 pm, at the Center for Contemporary Printmaking. Rumor has it that Jack Boul and his son, David, may be in attendance. Refreshments will be served. Admission is free.

The Center for Contemporary Printmaking

Normal hours are Monday through Saturday 9 am to 5 pm, and Sunday, 12 to 5 pm. The gallery is located at 299 West Ave., in Mathews Park, Norwalk, CT., 203-899-7999, http://www.contemprints.org. Admission is free, and the gallery is handicapped accessible.

Sunset/Moonrise Kayak Paddle Around Norwalk Islands Sept. 12

Experienced and novice kayakers are invited to join Friends of the Norwalk Islands for a sunset/moonrise paddle that coincides with the mid-autumn festival on the Chinese calendar.

A guided Kayak Paddle to the Norwalk Islands will launch at 4:30 p.m. on Monday, September 12, from The Small Boat Shop dock at 144 Water Street. Children (age 10 and above and weighing at least 100 pounds) are welcome to participate. Water safety and basic paddling techniques will be discussed before the tour to the Norwalk Islands begins.

“If you have never seen the sunset from a kayak or paddled beneath the moon, this trip is for you,” says Susan Snider, president, Friends of the Norwalk Islands. “After launching, we’ll head down the Norwalk River into Long Island Sound to enjoy the beauty of the Norwalk Islands and the night sky. We’ll return to the dock by 8:00 p.m.”

The Small Boat Shop is sponsoring several kayak paddles to support the Friends of the Norwalk Islands. The event fee of $85 includes a kayak, paddles, life jacket and $25 donation to Friends of the Norwalk Islands. Reservations are required by calling Friends of the Norwalk Islands (203-849-8341) or The Small Boat Shop (203-854-5223) or visit http://www.TheSmallBoatShop.com/kayaktours2011.html.

Led by Snider, the Friends of the Norwalk Islands has partnered with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to conserve, protect and enhance the environmental, recreational and cultural significance of the Norwalk Islands and to promote the National Wildlife Refuge System. The Norwalk Islands of Chimon, Peach, Goose and Sheffield are part of the Norwalk Islands unit of the Stewart B. McKinney National Wildlife Refuge. To learn more, visit the web site at http://www.FriendsoftheNorwalkIslands.org.

Photo Credit: Dick Ramsey