Through the Lens: Torrington Photographs 1870 – 1970 @ Torrington Historical Society

Photography takes an instant of time and captures that moment forever. Historical images bring us back to the time and place where they were taken, they are the essence of an areas’ cultural heritage. A new photography exhibition has just been mounted by the Torrington Historical Society that will be on display through October 31, 2019, called, Through the Lens: Torrington Photographs 1870-1970.

This exhibition focuses on the works of several local photographers, both professional and amateur, which are well represented in the Society’s collections. Included in the exhibition is the work of Christie Siebert, F.O. Hills, Sidney Jennings, and Thomas Wootton. Also featured in this exhibit are images from the Charles Harris Photo Album, acquired by the Society in 2018. The album features approximately 80 photographs of downtown Torrington from the late 1900s through the early 1930s.

The highlight of this exhibition is that many of the images have been recently acquired by the Torrington Historical Society and are on display for the first time. Visitors will find images that depict scenes of daily life that include downtown Torrington in the 1870s with its wooden buildings, dirt roads, and early factories. Other images give visitors a bird’s-eye views of Torrington; a turn of the 20th-century birthday party; O&G truck moving a small building along a north end street as neighborhood children look on, and photos of various businesses from the late 19th century through the 1970s.

The exhibition will be of special interest to photography buffs because of the variety of photography mediums on display. Original images, including albumen prints, glass-plate negatives, black and white prints, and color slides that were digitized and enlarged make it easy for visitors to study the fascinating details of these historic images.

The Torrington Historical Society is located on 192 Main Street and is open Tuesday – Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For additional information visit their website.

Be a Winner @ Norfolk’s Weekend in Norfolk Aug 2-4

On August 2, 3, and 4 everyone is a “winner” in Norfolk. Fun for all is the watchword in Norfolk, Connecticut during the town’s Fourth Annual three-day, town-wide festival, A Weekend in Norfolk, better known as WIN. https://weekendinnorfolk.org. Everyone’s invited to come with family and friends to enjoy more than 80 events—mostly free—that Norfolk’s organizations, businesses, and individuals will be putting on to welcome visitors to their town.

On Friday, August 2, take a tour to see the magnificent Tiffany stained glass windows at the Immaculate Conception Church and in the Battell Chapel. If you are in a romantic mood, head to the picturesque village green to get married or to renew your vows, the organizers of WIN have bouquets, ring bearers, and witnesses standing by on the Village Green. There are also artisan demos, and the opening reception for the Norfolk Artists & Friends 11th annual exhibition, plus concerts at Infinity Hall and the Yale Music Shed. For literary lovers, there is a celebration of Walt Whitman’s 200th birthday at the Norfolk Library. If you like nature and are strong of wind and sound of heart, enter in the hike the peaks challenge, which is a three-day, six peak hiking challenge organized by the Norfolk Land trust.

The pace picks up on Saturday, August 4, with continuing art events, a furniture making demonstration, tours of Tiffany Stained Glass Windows, and multiple concerts, including a free concert at the Music Shed. The Norfolk Farmers Market is celebrating the day with a variety of special events for young and old alike including chef demonstrations. If you are a history buff, don’t miss a walk through Norfolk’s Industrial past with historian, Richard Byrne. On this walk, you will learn about the once thriving mills and factories on the Blackberry River. The popular kids’ fire hose water soccer event will take place from 12 noon to 3 pm. The day winds down with a Taste of the Town from 5 pm to 7 pm at the Manor House, and Family Fun Night at the Botelle School from 6 pm to 10 pm that will feature a DJ, field games, an outdoor movie, and food for sale. If just music is more your style there is a Debussy, Strauss and Shubert Concert at Yale Music Shed from 8 pm to 10 pm.

Sunday, August 5, is no time to go home—there are more tours including the Whitehouse (former Stoeckel Mansion), samples of a getaway day at Mountain View Green Retreat, Tiffany Stained Glass Window tours, farm tours, and an open house at the Norfolk Country Club with the chance to see its famed 9-hole golf course. In addition to the music and art shows, there will be a hot dog eating contest, a demonstration of fly tying and casting on the green, and a 5K- trail run.
For up to the minute information on WIN, Weekend In Norfolk, visit https://weekendinnorfolk.org for details.

Walls of Color: The Murals of Hans Hofmann at the Bruce Museum

This spring and summer the Bruce Museum located on One Museum Drive in Greenwich will be awash in the vibrant hues of
Abstract Expressionist Hans Hofmann.

Walls of Color: The Murals of Hans Hofmann, is the first ever exhibition to focus on the artist’s varied and under-appreciated public
mural projects that will be on view at the Bruce Museum through September 6. The show will then travel to The Patricia
and Phillip Frost Art Museum at Florida International University, Miami, FL (October 10, 2015 to January 3, 2016), and to the Ackland Art Museum, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC (January 22 to April 10, 2016).

Awakening Hans Hofmann (1880-1966) Awakening, 1947 Oil on canvas, 59 ¼  x 40 ¼ in. Private Collection Photograph by Paul Mutino  Works by Hans Hofmann used with permission of the Renate, Hans and Maria Hofmann Trust
Awakening
Hans Hofmann (1880-1966)
Awakening, 1947
Oil on canvas, 59 ¼ x 40 ¼ in.
Private Collection
Photograph by Paul Mutino
Works by Hans Hofmann used with permission of the Renate, Hans and Maria Hofmann Trust

A towing figure among the New York School painters and one of the most important teachers and theoretician of the Abstract
Expressionist movement, Hans Hoffman is well known for his dynamic approach to color. The centerpiece of Walls of Color: The Murals of Hans Hofmann will be nine oil studies by Hofmann,each seven feet tall, for the redesign of the Peruvian city of Chimbote. This was Hofmann’s extraordinary collaboration, in 1950, with Catalan architect José Luis Sert – the man who designed the
Spanish Pavilion at the Paris World’s Fair in 1937, for which Picasso’s great mural Guernica was conceived. Although never realized, this visionary project was to include a huge mosaic wall – a freestanding bell tower in the town center – designed by Hofmann, which would incorporate not only his own highly evolved notions of Abstract Expressionist visual dynamics, but also forms symbolic of traditional Peruvian culture, religion and history.

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Although now nearly forgotten, Hofmann also created two huge public murals in Manhattan. In 1956, for the developer William Kaufman, and in collaboration with the noted pioneer modernist architect William Lescaze, Hofmann created an astonishing, brilliantly colored mosaic mural, wrapped around the elevator bank in the main entrance hall of the office building at 711 Third Avenue. Two years later, in 1958, commissioned by the New York City Board of Education, Hofmann created a 64-foot long and
11-foot tall mosaic-tile mural for the High School of Printing (now the High School of Graphic Arts Communication) on West 49th Street.
These large scale stunning works will be brought back to life at the Bruce Museum via varied painted studies, mosaic maquettes, photos, and ephemera – as well as studies for a mural for an unrealized New York apartment house of the same period – which will show Hofmann’s working methods.

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A scholarly catalogue has been created for the exhibition, with a foreword from the Renate, Hans and Maria Hofmann Trust, and essays by Curator Kenneth Silver and Mary McLeod, Professor at the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, Columbia University. Public programming planned for the exhibition includes the 2015 Bob and Pam Goergen Lecture Series, with lectures by Curator Kenneth E. Silver on Tuesday, May 5; Stacey Gershon, principal at Stacey Gershon Fine Art/MLG Art Advisory on Thursday, June 11; and Mary McLeod, Professor at the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning & Preservation, Columbia University, on Thursday, June 25. All lectures will be held at the Museum and will begin at 7:30 p.m.

About the Bruce Museum
The Bruce Museum is a museum of art and science and is located at One Museum Drive in Greenwich, Connecticut. The Museum is open Tuesday through Sunday from 10 am 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 less than five 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 http://brucemuseum.org. For area information www.visitfairfieldcountyct.com

John Funt and Gerald Incandela to show at Five Points Gallery

Five Points Gallery, located in Downtown Torrington, will open a new exhibition “John Funt and Gerald Incandela at Five Points” on Thursday, May 28th. The show will run through June 27 and will be open Thursdays through Sundays from 1-5 p.m. Five Points Gallery is free and open to the public. An opening reception will take place on Friday, May 29 at 6 p.m. and an artist talk with occur on Friday, June 12 at 6 p.m. The public is encouraged to attend both events, which are sponsored by Burlington Construction.

John Funt Waterfall
John Funt Waterfall

John Funt studied art with sculptor Rhys Caparn at the Dalton School in New York and with painter Joseph Slate at Kenyon College in Ohio. He has had solo exhibitions at Nelson Macker Fine Art, Morgan Lehman Gallery, James Graham and Sons and the Norfolk Library. Funt has worked as an event designer for the Metropolitan Museum of Art and a Designer and Display Director for Tiffany & Company but for the past decade, has devoted himself full-time to painting.

Commenting on Funt’s work, The New Criterion wrote: “John Funt turns the dynamics of landscape around.” Another review from The New Yorker described his work as follows: ” The wide-screen format announces representational intent; the jewel-like undertones and simplified forms reveal the fundamental decorative impulse.”

Incandella Card
Incandella Card

Gerald Incandela is an American artist, born in Tunisia. Incandela received a philosophy degree in 1969, then moved to Paris where he studied art history. In 1974, Gerald Incandela began to photograph and soon after learned photographic printing. He is recognized for his unique photographic process, by which he conceptually merges drawing and photography. During the course of developing the large format, black and white prints, Incandela selectively applies developer and fixer on paper with a brush as to reveal and animate selected elements of the captured image.

His work is in numerous collections including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the J. Paul Getty Museum and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Incandela has had numerous solo exhibitions in the United States and abroad and has also taken part in numerous group exhibitions. In his recent body of work, Gerald Incandela has transitioned from drawing with the photographic medium to painting with it. The tones and colors are the result of the action of regular light oxidizing the silver in the paper before fixing the image. It is not a tinted or colored silver print and therefore not “mixed media”. Each one is unique because Incandela applies selectively the solutions onto the paper instead of immersing the paper evenly in the solutions.

Five Points Gallery is located at 33 Main Street, Torrington, CT. Hours are Thursdays through Sundays from 1 to 5 p.m. The gallery is also open by appointment. For more information please visit www.fivepointsgallery.org.

For more event information www.litchfieldhills.com

Colonial Revival Fashion and more at Litchfield Historical Society

The Litchfield History Museum has planned a series of March programs sure to make this month fly by. On March 5 there is a program called A New Country that will focus on immigration. Each participant will take on the identity of an immigrant to the United States and go through a series of tasks, including traveling to America, going through Ellis Island, and navigating life in your new home. The program begins at 3:30 p.m. and is suitable for children 7+ and costs $5 for members and $7 for non-members.

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At 2 p.m. on March 8, celebrate creating a national identity with the songs of Irish – Americans. “Creating a National Identity: Songs of the Irish Americans” is a lecture and music presentation which explores the fascinating history of a variety of songs that evoke strong emotional visions of Ireland, but are of American authorship. This program traces popular songs from the 1840’s through to the early Twentieth Century as a road map to the emergence of the cultural identity of Irish-Americans. Presenting songs of labor, emigration, homesickness and struggle, we recognize a people who have traveled far, achieved much and recorded their journeys in songs with fullness of feeling and tremendous faith. The musical ensemble Ask Your Father presents acoustic ballads and songs in the American folk tradition. Ask Your Father is the husband and wife team Rich & Dee Kelly and their partner Rick Spencer. This program is free for members and $5 for non-members.

The month is rounded out on March 22 at 3 pm with an interesting lecture on fashion during Connecticut’s Colonial Revival period. From costume balls to reproduction furniture Connecticut embodied the ideals of the Colonial Revival. Taking root during the Centennial celebrations of 1876, residents looked back at the colonial past and took to heart the simplified lives of their ancestors. Embodied by furniture and fashion designs, as well as social clubs and entertainments, the Colonial Revival Movement grew to extremes in Connecticut, and the New England Region. Participants will explore this period of Connecticut’s history through what it created and what inspired it with Karen DePauw, research and collections associate at the Connecticut Historical Society. This program is free for members and $5 for non-members.

To register for these events go to registration@litchfieldhistoricalsociety.org. For more information on what to see and do in the Litchfield Hills visit www.litchfieldhills.com

Pastoral Solitudes and Landscape Paintings at the Gregory James Gallery

November 4th. All of the paintings were produced over the past two years and reflect the farms and untouched landscapes of Connecticut’s Northwest Corner. A few marine paintings were inspired by scenes near Adkins’ home in Maine, where as a boy, he spent summer vacations with his family.

Thomas_Adkins_Golden_Rod_Fields-Woodbury_24x24_oil_-

Most of his paintings are derived from small sketches made on location, which Adkins refers to later in the studio, making subtle changes in color and light to evoke a mood, the season or time of day.

The green and gold fields of “Northern Farm Early Spring” draw the eye up to an aging grey barn illuminated by sunlight peeking over the hills beyond the farm. The last remnants of snow are visible on hilltops and the bare branches of trees stretch toward a pale sky tinged with purple. The interplay of light and shadow hint at a scene captured just before sunset, or perhaps slightly after sunrise.

The change of season is evident in “Fall Diagonal Light Kent,” which features a pair of barns, bookends to a white farmhouse, tucked beneath leafy green trees tinged with orange. The last slanting rays of sun fall over the scene from beyond the frame of the painting as thick clouds move in from the opposite side.

Looking at “Lake Waramaug Summer,” the viewer seems to be perched on the path, in the same spot Adkins set up his easel, pausing to take in the view of the lake and green the hills sloping down to its edges. There is a small farm tucked into the hillside, yet there is a sense that the viewer is able to take in this tranquil scene alone. Adkins calls it “a snapshot of the moment. You get a true sense of the atmosphere and the feeling for the place.”

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A graduate of Paier College of Art of New Haven, Adkins completed graduate classes at the School of Visual Arts of New York. He has worked as art director and creative director for some of the most prestigious advertising agencies in Connecticut and New York.

As a contemporary painter, Adkins’ style and technique has developed from early influences by Impressionistic painters of light on nature, such as Monet, Pissaro, Willard Metcalf. Adkins’ work is featured in private collections throughout the United States and abroad. His paintings have been shown in galleries and exhibitions in Connecticut and New England, including the New Britain Museum of American Art, The Butler Institute Of American, Old Lyme Association, Gregory James Gallery, Greene Art Gallery and at Bayview Gallery in Brunswick, Me. A member of the Connecticut Plein Air Painters Society and the Association of Oil Painters of America, he participated in the prestigious International Marine Art Exhibition at The Maritime Gallery at Mystic Seaport. In 2014, he will be one of a select few award-winning artists from seven countries selected to participate in the 35th Annual International Marine Art Exhibition at Mystic Seaport.

The Gregory James Gallery is located at 93 Park Lane Road (Route 202) in New Milford, about 100 feet from the intersection of Route 109. For more information, please call (860) 354-3436 or visit gregoryjamesgallery.com.