Dedicated to covering the visual arts community in Connecticut.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Explore art process at show in Middletown on Saturday

Vinnie's Jump and Jive
424 Main St., Middletown, (860) 347-6971 x3777
Third Space: Visual Arts Connection
Sat., Apr. 2, 2011, 3—6 p.m.

Press release

On April 2 from 3 to 6 p.m., Vinnie’s Jump and Jive in Middletown will explore the artistic process during an art show titled Third Space: Visual Arts Connection. The show will feature the work of local artists Thelma Hollaran, Susan Gudat, Pam Murphy, Dan Rosenthal and Penelope Kasolis-Drown. Guests will enjoy light refreshments, meet the artists and view their work.

In the art world, the "third space" refers to the environment and "flow" created when an artist is deep in thought in the process of making art. It is thought that the artist is the "first space," the medium is the “second,” and the "third" space is the connection to art, experiences and one another. Landscapes, intimate spaces and layered textures emphasize the artist’s reaction and expression about his or her experiences.

“This show is a joint effort of five artists and teachers who enjoy creating art. When they are in the classroom, they foster a community where connection to one another is celebrated,” explained artist Pam Murphy. “The images in this show are reflective of inspirational moments in time, rich textures and medium and the interaction of color and space as a reaction to significant personal experiences.”

Vinnie’s Jump and Jive is a community dance hall sponsored by the Community Health Center with the motto “All kinds of dance. All kinds of people.” Classes range from ballroom and belly dance to hula hooping, yoga and specialty programs for children and seniors.

“Vinnie’s has a long history of supporting local artists,” said Vinnie’s Jump and Jive Program Coordinator Julie Deak. “This show will be interesting, because these five artists share common goals as artists and as art educators for children. But while their goals are similar, the variety of the pieces is a reminder of the countless possibilities for individual expression within the third space.”

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Saturday afternoon opening at City Gallery in New Haven

City Gallery
994 State St., New Haven, (203) 782-2489
Karen Wheeler: Suspicions
Mar. 31—Apr. 24, 2011.

Press release

City Gallery in New Haven presents Suspicions, an exhibition of handmade paper formations by Karen Wheeler, during the month of April. Wheeler’s work demonstrates the translucence, surprising strength and resiliency of her medium. Skin like abaca papers stretched over wire and reed forms are enhanced with a deft use of drawing that increases surface nuances. Other works simultaneously encase and reveal found mechanisms as Wheeler explores concepts of renewal.

There will be an opening reception for the show this Sat., Apr. 2, from 3—6 p.m.

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Artist reception for Juliano show at Charter Oak Cultural Center Friday

Charter Oak Cultural Center
21 Charter Oak Ave., Hartford, (860) 249-1207
Tony Juliano: I Came for the Wine and Cheese
Apr. 1—29, 2011.
Opening Reception: Fri., Apr. 1, 5:30 p.m.

Press release
Tony Juliano’s exhibition I Came for the Wine and Cheese is a mockery of and homage to famous artists and their artwork throughout history as well as other artwork satirizing modern day culture. The exhibition includes paintings, installations, murals and prizes.

The exhibit runs through Fri., Apr. 29th. Wine and hors d’oeuvres will be served at the opening reception on Fri., Apr. 1 at 5:30 p.m. FREE.

From Tony Juliano:
I am having a rather big art exhibition. In big, I mean quite a few things...

Lots of new artwork that has never been seen before. I'll have around 23 to 24 large pieces of original artwork. Mostly all new, but nothing dating back later than 2007/2009.

Also going against my Stuckism beliefs, I am doing my first and maybe only installation art project. It is in very much the style of Agoo Art. I won't go into a lot of detail so you will have to come to see. Hint: Up.

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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

eo artlab group show opening reception this Friday

eo artlab
69 Main St., Chester, (860) 526-4833
Mar. 3—May 29, 2011.
Opening reception and artist’s talk:: Fri., Feb. 4, 6—9 p.m.

Press release

See the buzz. Hear the vision. Smell the talent. Taste the passion. Feel the intellect. The group show entitled Synesthesia, runs Mar. 30 to May 29, with an opening reception Fri., Apr. 1, from 6—9 p.m.

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Thursday evening artists' reception at Sumner McKnight Crosby Jr. Gallery

Sumner McKnight Crosby Jr. Gallery
70 Audubon St., 2nd floor, New Haven, (203) 772-2788
Common Ground: What Matters is the Dream
Through May 13, 2011.
Artists' reception: Thurs., Mar.31, 5-7 p.m.

Press release

The Arts Council of Greater New Haven, in collaboration with students of Common Ground High School, presents Common Ground: What Matters is the Dream, an exhibition in the Sumner McKnight Crosby Jr. Gallery, 70 Audubon St., 2nd floor. The exhibition will be on display during business hours from Fri., Mar. 25 through Fri., May 13, 2011. A public reception is scheduled with the student artists for Thurs., Mar. 31 from 5—7 pm.

Curated by Rachel Gilroy, Common Ground: What Matters is the Dream is an exhibition of multimedia work by student artists in response to the question: “What is sustainability?” This project is a collaborative effort within the Common Ground community to explore how students think and see ecologically. The resulting visual expressions reveal connections within Common Ground and between the school and its surrounding communities, farm and natural ecosystems.

Common Ground is a high school, urban farm, and environmental education center located at the base of New Haven’s West Rock Ridge State Park. The school’s mission is to cultivate habits of healthy living and sustainable environmental practice among a diverse community of children, adults, and families.

Rachel Gilroy is the Environmental Leader and Sustainability Coordinator at Common Ground. She has taken an active role in creating a powerful learning lab for her students in which these connections can emerge and thrive. She explains that “Common Ground is taking a process-oriented approach to developing students’ connection between the words ‘common ground’ and ‘sustainability’. The aim is to give them the visual tools to create a method of compositional thinking and perceiving, to imagine how two-dimensional designs can be shaped in three-dimensional places, and to develop an appreciation of our dreams—for they affect how we cultivate our world into a place that truly sustains us.”

Audio interviews with Common Ground students, produced by Arts Council intern Molly McKenna, are now available at and at

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Opening reception for two shows at Middlesex Community College this evening

Middlesex Community College Pegasus Gallery
100 Training Hill Road, Chapman Hall, Middletown, 1-800-818-5501
Aniko Horvath: Derelict in the Pegasus Gallery
Glass Works by Conrad Duenkel in The Niche
Through Apr. 30, 2011.
Opening reception for both shows, Thurs., Mar. 24, 5-7 p.m. in Pegasus Gallery.

Press release

Aniko Horvath photographs abandoned sites as a means to explore the formal and contextual associations of space. Horvath employs the aesthetic of architectural decay to delineate blighted locations that include home, factory and urban settings. These photographs are composed with sensitivity to the trace remains of human occupation and the suggestive nature of dramatically lit architectonics. Broken windows, machine parts, furnishings, appliances and trash act as psychologically charged indicators of loss, isolation and situational disfigurement. Horvath’s powerful images empathize with these spaces and offer expansive readings of social upheaval, environmental waste, catastrophe and the destructive force of time.

Horvath teaches art at Turn of River Middle School in Stamford and earned a BFA and MFA from Pratt Institute.

Fair Haven based sculptor Conrad Duenkel has worked in glass for over 30 years. His blown and constructed pieces emphasize the artistic process and material properties of this historically rich material. Duenkel produces dynamic functional objects as well as abstract and representational sculptural works. His transparent and colored bowls, goblets, and vases are delicate examples of masterful technique and skill. Duenkel’s sculptural paperweights, flowers, fruit and animals forms embody the organic materiality of glass and the aura of the handmade.

The Niche is located on the first floor of Founders Hall and is open Mondays through Fridays 8:30 a.m.—4 p.m. when classes are in session.

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Painting show opens this evening at 100 Pearl Street Gallery in Hartford

100 Pearl Street Gallery
100 Pearl St., 1st Fl., Hartford, (860) 525-8629
Undercurrents: Paintings by Ethan Boisvert
Mar.23—May 13, 2011
Opening reception: Thurs., Mar. 24, 5—7 p.m.

Press release

Hartford-based visual artist Ethan Boisvert draws inspiration from 20th century artistic movements to achieve a perfect balance between the objective technique and the subjective reflection of painting. His artwork—acrylic painting on a variety of media—appropriates different styles and synthesizes them into entirely original work.

Boisvert's paintings will be shown in the 100 Pearl Street gallery from Mar. 23—May 13. There will be an opening reception in the gallery space on Thurs., Mar. 24, from 5—7 p.m.

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

SCRAWL to be revealed this Friday at Artspace

50 Orange St, New Haven, (203) 772-2709
Through Mar. 26, 2011.
VIP Cocktail Hour: Fri., Mar. 25, 5—6 p.m., Tickets $10.
BIG Reveal Closing reception and unveiling: Fri., Mar. 25, 6—8 p.m. (Free and open to the public)
Artspace Underground: Sat., Mar. 26, 8—11 p.m., $5 cover.

Scrawl opened on Feb. 9 with blank white walls. Over the past month and a half almost 50 artists, working individually or in teams, have been engaged in a sprawling, scrawling site-specific drawing. Inspired by the Surrealists "exquisite corpse" concept in which each participant adds something to a drawing or literary work without knowing what has come before or will follow, the SCRAWLers are creating their drawings without—in theory—awareness or regard for the imagery around them.

Scrawl will have it’s "BIG Reveal" this Friday, celebrated with a "VIP Cocktail Hour" from 5—6 p.m. (details and tickets are available for $10 on the Artspace Web site) and the "BIG Reveal" closing reception from 6—8 p.m., which is free and open to the public.

Visiting this past Saturday about a week before the unveiling, the walls had come alive with a dazzle of different drawings and designs. Here below, some details of the drawings and some images of artists still at work.

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"A Twist" and shout

City Gallery
994 State St., New Haven, (203) 782-2489
Nancy Eisenfeld: A Twist
Mar. 3—27, 2011.

Nancy Eisenfeld's works are deeply connected to nature. This connection to nature and the environment expressed both through her imagery and—in the case of her sculptural and assemblage works—juxtapositions and through the materials she employs. Those materials include the traditional ones of paper, ink and paint as well as found objects both natural and manufactured. A Twist, Eisenfeld's solo exhibit at City Gallery, showcases drawings, sculptural works and pieces that incorporate both two- and three-dimensional elements.

An obvious example is "Bark Bitter & Sweet." As with many of her recent sculptural works, Eisenfeld has stories to tell about how the materials came her way. In this case, the jagged shards of glass are from a broken mirror from her studio; the tall pieces of ragged bark were stripped off a tree struck by lightning.

"I think the materials, if they're not given to me as a present, come to me out of need," Eisenfeld tells me as I survey the show.

With "Bark Bitter & Sweet," Eisenfeld juxtaposes wide collaged strips of bark standing some 8—9 feet high with a plexiglas panel etched on the back and rubbed with black paint. The effect is that of a drawing on Plexiglas with swirls of smoky gray and snaking lines of force. Pieces of the mirror are adhered in two vertical veins the length of the open bark. Smaller shards of the mirror glass are attached to the Plexiglas in such a way as to suggest the idea of a spray of debris.

Works like these are open to multiple interpretations. On the most immediate level, it suggests the violent rending of the tree at the moment of the lightning's impact. But it could also allude to broader environmental questions or even to emotional states, depending on what the viewer brings to the experience. The fact that the shattered glass is from a mirror rather than a transparent pane adds to the symbolic resonance: The viewer sees oneself in the vortex of natural, manufactured and hand-worked elements.

Even when referencing such ugly realities as industrial pollution or oil spills, there is great beauty in these works. A solitary smokestack in "Air Particles"—a drawing in white on black paper—is the source for a richly detailed miasma of dots, lines and vapor.

With "Oil Spill," composed with black ink on a tall sheet of mylar, Eisenfeld couples control with chance to evoke the thin line between normality and catastrophe. Black coagulating clouds of ink billow upwards from a thin squat ink blotch three-quarters of the way down from the top. That same ink blotch is repeated eight inches below, a serendipitous rolling of the just-inked mylar back onto itself, according to Eisenfeld. The vagaries of chance play a large part in her work. The unintentional repetition of that shape adds a temporal dimension to "Oil Spill," as though what we are seeing is two consecutive moments in time. One moment everything is fine, all systems (seemingly) under control. In the next moment, the hounds of industrial hell are unleashed.

Contained within this work—actually within most of Eisenfeld's works—is the formal and metaphorical duality of control and chaos.

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

"Common Ground" opens at Hygienic this Saturday evening

Hygienic Art
83 Bank St., P.O. Box 417, New London, (860) 443-8001
Common Ground: Six Artists interpret New London
Mar. 19—Apr. 16, 2011
Opening reception: Sat., Mar. 19, 7—10 p.m.

Press release

Common Ground: Six Artists interpret New London exhibits six distinct disciplines of artistic expression while collaborating on one subject: The City of New London. Though the exhibition consists of artists from Poland, China, and across America, each artist—chosen for their unique style, choice of medium, and exceptional quality—lives in the city, working, creating and adding to an already diverse and multicultural artistic community.

Common Ground will be on display from Mar. 19—Apr. 16. The opening reception is this Sat., Mar. 19, from 7—10 p.m.

Ted Ciesielski (Video Installation) is a native of Poland and works both with film and video. Mr. Ciesielski has created remarkable time-lapse videos of many of the landmarks of New London and has many accomplished credits to his body of work, including clients like National Geographic, HBO and Lady Gaga.

Pola Esther (Photography) is also a native of Poland and an artist in residence at the Hygienic. Esther creates powerful photographs of contrasting elements of urban decay, feminine beauty and sexuality. In this show, she presents a very personal tale of the town of New London. Her vision is mysterious, magical and mystical. She focuses on places of worship and invites the audience to intimate disputes about spirit, sin and sublimation.

Don Eccleston (Painter/Watercolor,) a native of New London, works in a very fluid, instinctive and playful style of imagery that is reminiscent of Pieter Breugel the Elder and Hieronymus Bosch. Working with watercolor, his paintings come together through various means—the use of found objects, memory and his of course, his wonderful imagination.

Yibing Huang/Mai Mang (Poet) is a Chinese Literature Professor at Connecticut College, a native of China and a renowned, published poet, both in China and here in the United States.

Troy Zaushny (Prints/Polyfresco Paintings) is a native of Connecticut and an also an artist in residence at the Hygienic. Zaushny has developed a very unique voice in the traditional world of Printmaking. He uses multi layered colored panels and varying levels of imagery to create very large prints that are surreal and chaotic, as well as incredibly sophisticated and powerful.

Michael J. Peery (Painting and Drawing), the mastermind behind this exhibition, is a native of Idaho and a resident of New London. Peery teaches at the Rhode Island School of Design and is an accomplished oil painter and draftsman. His paintings were published in the March issue of American Artist 2010 and are included in esteemed collections such as the Forbes Foundation, The Prince of Wales Foundation, and in the personal collection of Jean-Louis Dumas-Hermes.

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Monday, March 14, 2011

Call for Artists: Hygienic "Sixth Annual Crossing Juried Exhibition"

Hygienic Art
83 Bank St., P.O. Box 417, New London, (860) 443-8001
Sixth Crossing Annual Juried Exhibition
Apr.23—May 21, 2011
Opening reception: Sat., Apr. 23, 7-10 p.m.
Submission receiving dates: Apr. 14—16, 2011 (see additional info below).

Press release

The Sixth Crossing Annual Juried Exhibition 2011 will be the Hygienic Art Gallery's sixth year of its juried art show. The original concept of "crossing the bridge" is an attempt to get people "Out for Art." In Southeastern Connecticut everyone's excuse for not getting out to local events many times comes back to the bridge and possibly the rivers that divide our towns. This exhibition's original concept is an attempt to get people to cross the bridge literally as well as to motivate artists to become involved on our side of the river. It is a regional show with over 100 artists submitting artwork to be considered. The Sixth Crossing Juried Exhibition is not a theme based show it is open to all themes and we hope to receive artists best and most recent work. It is also an opportunity for new artists from across other bridges to get involved with the exciting things happening at the Hygienic Art Galleries and in downtown New London. Every year we have a different juror. Every Juror looks for different things so it is always interesting to see what makes the cut.

The opening reception will be Sat., Apr. 23 from 7—10 p.m. There will be cash prizes for selected best pieces. The show will run through Sat., May 21. Visit for info and to become a member of our website.

Submission info:

Receiving Dates:
Thursday, April 14, 11 a.m.—3 p.m.
Friday, April 15, 11 a.m.—6 p.m.
Saturday, April 16, 11 a.m.—6 p.m.

Entry fees:
$15.00 for single entry
$20.00 for two entries
$25.00 for three entries

Unselected Pick-up:
Thursday, April 21, 11 a.m.—3 p.m.
Sunday April 24, 12—3 p.m.
Selected Pick Up:
Sunday, May 22, 12—3 p.m.

Artists may submit up to 3 pieces to be considered. All media welcome. All work must be current. All work must be for sale. No works previously shown at Hygienic will be accepted. All works must be suitably framed with wires and ready for hanging. No clips or saw tooth hangers. All metal frames must have hangers and wire. Work submitted must not exceed 60” in either direction. Sculpture must be easily transportable no more than 50 pounds. All work must remain for the duration of the show. Hygienic will retain 30% of sales and collect 6% CT state sales tax. Hygienic will not be responsible for unclaimed work.

Juror: Janice La Motta

Hygienic Art is pleased to announce this years Juror: Janice La Motta, for The Sixth Crossing Annual Juried Exhibition. Hygienic is honored and looking forward to celebrating our sixth year.

Janice La Motta

Janice La Motta has over twenty-five years of professional experience in the field of fine arts in both the commercial and non-profit sectors. She was the curator at the New Britain Museum of American Art for 5½ years prior to opening her own fine arts gallery, Paesaggio Gallery, in 1991. She closed her gallery, La Motta Fine Art, in May 2009, after a successful tenure of 18 years in the gallery business. Currently she is the Arts Program Director at Billings Forge Community Works in Hartford, where she oversees two initiatives: the Studio at Billings Forge—a multi-use performance space—and the Workshops at Billings Forge, an urban artist residency program.

Ms. La Motta has been a visiting artist and lecturer at area schools and Universities and has served as a juror on grant panels for the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism, the Greater Hartford Arts Council and the Roberts Foundation. A graduate of the Hartford Art School, University of Hartford, she is a practicing visual artist with an extensive exhibition history. Her recent work will be included in the upcoming exhibition, MS Redux at Artspace Gallery in Hartford, opening in March 2011.

She lives in West Hartford, CT with her fifteen year old daughter Phoebe.

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Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Artist reception Saturday at CaRo Gallery in Meriden

CaRo Art Studio and Gallery
290 Pratt St., Meriden, (203) 886-6809
Joe Bun Keo: Modest Gesture and the Grand Scale
Mar. 12—20, 2011.
Opening reception, Sat., Mar. 12, 6—10 p.m. Admission $5 suggested donation at the door.

Press release

CaRo Art Studio and Gallery will host Modest Gesture and the Grand Scale, a show of selected works by Joe Bun Keo, for a short run beginning this Saturday.

Joe Bun Keo's artist statement:

It's like coming midway into a conversation; finding yourself in that awkward silence with a soundtrack of crickets chirping, and blank faces asking "um...okay...what now?"

You're stuck trying to find a resolution, whether it's by attempting to catch up to speed with everyone else or interjecting with a hasty subject change or an offbeat icebreaker. Things may go awry, fail miserably or they can just move on without consequence.

I flip my misunderstandings and shortcomings in language to turn them into experiments with wordplay. There will be clichés, punch lines, pop culture references and contemporary youth vernacular involved.

I also enjoy the reexamination of what people take for granted. The most mundane of utilitarian objects or overlooked situations can be taken out of the comfort of their given context and shown in a new light.

The end result could be clean, quick, clever, dry, sarcastic, but nevertheless accessible and relevant. The dialogue between the work and audience may seem short, but remnants resonate.

I believe in modest gestures, minor miracles, small victories and second chances... as should you.

The show will on display Mar. 12—20. An artist's reception will be held at the gallery this Saturday, Mar. 12, from 6—10 p.m. Admission will be $5 at the door.

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Thursday, March 03, 2011

Landscape show opens Saturday at Ridgefield Guild of Artists

Ridgefield Guild of Artists
34 Halpin Ln., Ridgefield, (203) 438-8863
Pathways to Landscape
Mar. 5—26, 2011
Opening reception: Sat. Mar. 5, 2—4 p.m.

Press release

RGA member Dean Fisher—winner of September’s Annual Juried Show and curator of Pathways to Landscape—has put together a survey of contemporary landscapes that represent some of the highest level of work being done today.

Exhibition includes works by Robert Bauer (Web), Frank Bruckmann (Web), Hollis Dunlap (Web), Nicholas Evans Cato (Web), Eileen Eder (Web), Dean Fisher (Web), Josh Gaetjen (Web), Christopher Gallego (Web), Israel Hershberg (Web), Diana Horowitz (Web), Alex Kanevsky (Web), Constance LaPalombara (Web), Claire Maury-Curran, William Meddick, Artie Mihalopolous, Lawrence Morelli (Web), Lenny Moskowitz (Web), William Nathans (Web), Josephine S. Robinson (Web), Stuart Shils (Web), E.M Saniga (Web), Jesus Villarreal (Web), Justin Weist (Web), Brian Wendler (Web) and Jordan Wolfson (Web).

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