Get Real at the Bruce Museum

Martin Lewis (American, 1881-1962) Above the Yards, Weehawken, 1918 Aquatint and etching, 17 ½ x 23 ¼” Collection of Dr. Dorrance T. Kelly ©Estate of Martin Lewis
Martin Lewis (American, 1881-1962)
Above the Yards, Weehawken, 1918
Aquatint and etching, 17 ½ x 23 ¼”
Collection of Dr. Dorrance T. Kelly
©Estate of Martin Lewis

Highlighting the work of nine American artists who at the beginning of the twentieth century were inspired by the world around them to realistically depict everyday scenes, the Bruce Museum presents the new exhibition Telling American History: Realism from the Print Collection of Dr. Dorrance T. Kelly from August 31 through December 1, 2013.

The show features more than 40 original fine art prints including lithographs and etchings that chronicle daily life – the bustle of urban streets, boisterous moments of leisure, modern modes of transportation, and bucolic rural images – by leading artists who approached their subject matter through the lens of realism: George Bellows (1882-1925), Thomas Hart Benton (1889-1975), Edward Hopper (1882-1967), Martin Lewis (1881-1962), Reginald Marsh (1898-1954), John Sloan (1871-1951), Benton Murdoch Spruance (1904-1967), Stow Wengenroth (1906-1978), and Grant Wood (1891-1942).

The artworks present visitors with a snapshot of America from 1905 through 1967. Each print featured in the exhibition was chosen for its subject matter and artistic merit and placed together they present windows into scenes of America’s past. Set amid a backdrop of events such as World War I, the Great Depression, New Deal programs, and World War II, the country was experiencing changes in its cultural, geographic, and demographic nature. The nation experienced a great upheaval as citizens and immigrants alike flocked to urban areas in hopes of greater economic prospects. At the same time, advances in technology and transportation were transforming rural regions.

Wengenroth_Grand Central Stow Wengenroth (American, 1906-1978) Grand Central, 1949 Lithograph, 8 ½ x 15 ¾” Collection of Dr. Dorrance T. Kelly
Wengenroth_Grand Central
Stow Wengenroth (American, 1906-1978)
Grand Central, 1949
Lithograph, 8 ½ x 15 ¾”
Collection of Dr. Dorrance T. Kelly

Drawn from different areas of the country, the artists shared a similar goal of creating artwork that was available to all. They embraced realism, using it to capture images of modern American society as it quickly changed around them. This distinguished their work from the traditional, idealized and romanticized work of European art. By illustrating everyday scenes, the artists featured in this show created connections for the average American and invited them to become part of the artistic dialog,because their images appealed through accessible subject matter and to the pocketbook of the everyday person.

A fully illustrated catalogue of the show will be available in the Bruce Museum Store. A series of public programs will be offered to complement the show, including Monday morning lectures, hands-on printmaking workshops for adults and students, a program for families with toddlers and one for seniors suffering from memory loss, as well as school tours.

Lewis_Misty Night Martin Lewis (American, 1881-1962) Misty Night, Danbury, 1947 Lithograph,11 x 15 ¼” Collection of Dr. Dorrance T. Kelly ©Estate of Martin Lewis
Lewis_Misty Night
Martin Lewis (American, 1881-1962)
Misty Night, Danbury, 1947
Lithograph,11 x 15 ¼”
Collection of Dr. Dorrance T. Kelly
©Estate of Martin Lewis

About the Bruce Museum
Explore Art and Science at the Bruce Museum, located at One Museum Drive in Greenwich, Connecticut. The Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm and Sunday from 1 pm to 5 pm; closed Mondays and major holidays. Admission is $7 for adults, $6 for students up to 22 years, $6 for seniors and free for members and children under 5 years. Individual admission is free on Tuesday. Free on-site parking is available and the Museum is accessible to individuals with disabilities. For additional information, call the Bruce Museum at (203) 869-0376 or visit the website at www.brucemuseum.org.

For area information www.visitfairfieldcountyct.com

Summer exhibits at Silvermine Arts Center

Kite - Charles Hinman and Master Printer Gary Lichtenstein
Kite – Charles Hinman and Master Printer Gary Lichtenstein

Silvermine Arts Center, located in New Canaan, CT will be kicking off its summer exhibitions with an exciting collaboration of works by Charles Hinman and Gary Lichtenstein, and new works by Guild Artist Christ Durante. Silvermine’s new Viewing Room features presentations of new works on paper by Guild Artists Roger Mudre and Robert Gregson. The exhibitions will open on Sunday, July 28th with a reception from 2pm-4pm, and will run through September 7th.

“Kites” features the latest collaborative silkscreens between three dimensional painting pioneer Charles Hinman and Master Printer Gary Lichtenstein. A working relationship which began in 2011 with their prints Gems, this latest body of work continues their exploration into translating the visual vocabulary of Hinman’s signature hard-edged shaped canvas into the realm of prints. By combining a mutual understanding of color and the use of subtle hand embossing, they have created a suite of prints that epitomizes the core of Hinman’s ideology: “Though the works at first glance appear serene and placid, they are ever changing as the surface of the ocean or the expanse of the sky. Ever dynamic, they are ever alive.”

A prime example of this idea can be seen in Kite 2. At first glance, the silkscreen faithfully reconstructs Hinman’s paintings down to the inclusion of subtle lines referencing the support system of his three dimensional work. As the viewer gazes at the work, the true complexity of its arrangement of space unfolds into an ever changing visual experience that expands upon Mr. Hinman’s longstanding commitment to visual perceptions of space.

In his new exhibit “No Mans Land,” Guild Artist Chris Durante has constructed an environment of what he calls “considered hanging,” where viewers can visually and physically traverse his works. An artist who is never satisfied with making work that neatly fits into prescribed categories, Durante continually explores and blurs the lines between mediums and artistic genres. Using a combination of paintings, drawings,graffiti, found objects and a collection of other materials, Durante creates a space that furthers his exploration of boundaries into a visual experience, creating a thought provoking space, a “place of freedom,” if you will, where viewers can explore ideas. About his work, Chris comments, “The inability to couple a thought with a sustained and focused action can be an asset if one can be patient and accept that condition as temporary. Let the mind wander and the hand fiddle. Attention is a slippery proposition. The unison of idea and craft will come, eventually.”

Drawing - Robert Gregson
Drawing – Robert Gregson

Silvermine’s new Viewing Room, will present works by Guild Artists Roger Mudre and Robert Gregson. A selection of new abstract silkscreens by Roger Mudre which were produced in collaboration with Master Printer Gary Lichtenstein and an installation of recently created optically fetching geometric drawings by Robert Gregson will be featured through the summer. For more information about the exhibitions and other upcoming events at Silvermine Arts Center call 203-966-9700 or visit our website at www.sivermineart.org.

About Silvermine Arts Center

Silvermine Arts Center located in New Canaan, Connecticut is one of the oldest artist communities in the United States. Located on a four acre campus, the center consists of a nationally renowned artist guild, award winning school of art offering multi-disciplinary art classes for all ages, an art and fine crafts shop and galleries, offering over twenty contemporary and historic exhibitions annually.

The center also provides innovative free and subsidized arts education in Norwalk and Stamford schools through its outreach program, Art Partners; and hosts a lecture series, performances, and special programs throughout the year. Silvermine Arts Center is a nonprofit organization.

Gallery Hours: Silvermine Galleries are open Wednesday through Saturday, 12p.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 1pm to 5 p.m. For more information, call (203) 966-9700 ext. 20 or visit the website: www.silvermineart.org.

For area information www.visitfairfieldcountyct.com

The Beauty of Botanical Illustrations in Litchfield Hills

Betsy Rogers-Knox has been drawing and painting since childhood. Her interest in botanical illustration began in Boulder, Colorado where she worked for a botanist and learned by close observation to appreciate the intricate beauty of Colorado wildflowers. This interest led her to the botanical illustration program at the New York Botanical Garden. Her final project included paintings of historic plants from the gardens of the Bellamy Ferriday House in Bethlehem, Connecticut.

Betsy_R-Knox-_Cherry

Betsy is enchanted by the full lifecycle of the plants she portrays in watercolor, and typically observes a plant for a full year before beginning a composition. Published work includes cover designs for Herb Quarterly magazine, the illustrations for the bookHerbs, Leaves of Magic and White Flower Farm’s catalog, as well as over thirty greeting card designs internationally distributed by Renaissance Greeting Card Company and Sunrise Publications.

Betsy_R-Knox-Common_Mullein

She has exhibited extensively including the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C., London’s Kew Gardens, the Horticultural Society of New York, and the New York Botanical Garden. In April 2013 she will show several works at the Royal Horticultural Show in London. Betsy also teaches drawing and watercolor painting to both adults and children from her studio in Bethlehem. Her website is www.betsyrogersknox.com.

Betsy_R-Knox-_Indian_Corn

A selection of the work of Betsy Rogers Knox will appear in the Gallery of the Oliver Wolcott Library located on 160 South Street, Litchfield, CT. through April 26 2013. For more information call 860-567-8030. or visit www.owlibrary.org. For area information www.litchfieldhills.com

A Visual Spectrum Of Exhibits Opens At Silvermine Arts Center In February

Silvermine Arts Center, located in New Canaan, CT will be opening a new set of exhibits February 24th, ranging from the dazzling abstractions of Sharon Cavagnolo to the visually complex installation by Mary Jo McGonagle. There is also the hyper-real figurative paintings of Anca Pedvisocar and the aptly named “Human Touch” figurative print group show featuring Karen Butler, Helen Cantrell, Alanna Fagan, Nancy Lasar and Nomi Silverman. The show runs through April 5th. All are welcomed to the opening reception on Sunday, February 24th 2:00pm – 4:00pm.

THE_QUESTION_oil_on_canvas_60in_x_80_in

In her exhibit, “New Paradigms,” artist Sharon Cavagnolo deals with chaos and the human need to control and come to terms with it. For the artist, a gestural or impulsive movement often serves as the beginning of an idea for a painting, with subsequent layers imparting balance, line, color and pattern. The creation of the ‘whole’ represents a new place to be.

“(Dis)connect” is the new site specific installation by Silvermine Guild Artist, Mary Jo McGonagle. Combining video and signature wall coverings and paintings, the installation reflects her fascination with how relationships take place in our everyday lives, hovering between humor and desperation. Time-based media in conjunction with painting creates the overall environment. McGonagle’s work is a multi-disciplinary exploration of images and narratives of sublimated family dynamics and the idea of the suburban home as an environment of contradictions. . In her exhibit, she uses decorative wallpapers, patterning and colorful language to conceal contemporary phrases. The phrases are camouflaged within the wallpaper patterns. There is an element of discovery, revealing our innermost feelings which deal with the unspoken, “not so nice,” thoughts that we all share.

The_Elements_-_Air_Wind_BW_woodcut_2011

Anca Pedvisocar’s exhibit “Take 2” is about second chances given to forgotten moments in forgotten lives of forgotten people, to be re-lived in a different way by people of our time. For this artist, the most difficult part in her work is choosing what to do next and why. Anca will look over the many black & white snap shots she has collected of the last century before choosing the most significant “insignificant” moment in time worth painting. The central theme of Pedvisocar’s paintings is a mixture of tension and solitude that seems to bring people together, while simultaneously pulling them apart. This conflict makes itself visually apparent in people’s most inconsequential and mundane actions and postures, glossing their figures with an unmistakable varnish that makes them impervious to one another and to themselves. The treatment of the figures in her paintings are restrained, as in a black and white movie, while exalting the color of the background, evoking the presence of an old, skipping soundtrack and a narrator’s voice starting to tell their story.

Curtain Call

The Guild group exhibition, “The Human Touch: Five Printmakers,” showcases new figurative works by Silvermine members Karen Brussat Butler, Helen Cantrell, Alanna Fagan, Nancy Lasar and Nomi Silverman. The five artists share a love of printmaking, exploring contemporary interpretations of the figure in a variety of print techniques including woodcut, intaglio, lithography and other media.

For more information on these exhibits and other events at the Silvermine Arts Center, please visit www.silvermineart.org or call 203-966-9700 ext. 20. For area information www.visitfairfieldcountyct.com.