Dedicated to covering the visual arts community in Connecticut.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Opening reception for "Diversions" at Institute Library Sat., June 29

The Institute Library
847 Chapel St., New Haven, (203) 562-5045
Jun. 29—Jul. 27, 2013.
Reception: Sat., Jun. 29, Noon—2 p.m.

Press release from Stephen Vincent Kobasa

Diversions, an exhibition curated by Aimée Burg. The featured artists are Liza Buzytsky, Frank De León Jones, Annie Ewaskio, Sarah Lassise, Simone Meltesen and Lizzy Sise. There will be an opening reception for Diversions at the institute Library on Sat., Jun. 29, from noon—2 p.m.

Humans live in the world, but are we of the world? The Romantic longing to connect to nature is sometimes so insistent that our presence in the natural world becomes desperate, uncanny, transgressive. Diversions explores the tension of humans inserted into the natural and forcing upon it their own human-nature. Figures are faceless, bodies disproportionate and at times simply implied. These actions suggest a narrative of utopian landscapes pushed to the surreal by our presence. The disruption ranges from awkward nostalgia to the introduction (and consequences) of nature overthrown. Diversions deals with the oldest of tropes: the joyous perfection of a paradise, and the dreadful premonition that its residents will destroy it.

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Monday, June 17, 2013

"Handful of Art" opens this week at John Slade Ely House, reception on Sunday

John Slade Ely House Center for Contemporary Art
51 Trumbull Street, New Haven, (203) 624-8055
Handful of Art
Jun. 19—Jul. 21, 2013.
Opening Reception: Sun., Jun. 23, 2—5 p.m.

Press release from the John Slade Ely House

The very best New Haven artists working in painting, sculpture, drawing, collage, printmaking and photography have made one remarkable deck of playing cards. Please join the John Slade Ely House in celebrating the culmination of a Partnership for CT Cities project over a year in the making. Handful of Art will be on view from Jun. 19 through Jul. 21. An opening reception will be held on Sun., Jun. 23, from 2—5 p.m.

The participating artists are Michael Angelis, John Arabolos, Amy Arledge, Cat Balco, Ethan Boisvert, Riley Brewster, Frank Bruckmann, Susan Clinard, Megan Craig, Jan Cunningham, Leila Daw, Steven DiGiovanni, Karen Dow, Eileen Eder, Silas Finch, Dean Fisher, Amanda Fornal, Josh Gaetjen, Michael Galvin, Elizabeth Gourlay, Rachel Hellerich, Cham Hendon, Lisa Hess, Danny Huff, Clint Jukkala, John Keefer, Zachary Keeting, Janet Lage, Martha Lewis, Nathan Lewis, Linda Lindroth, William Lustenader, Barbara Marks, Christopher Mir, Adam Niklewicz, Jason Noushin, John O’Donnell, Perry Obee, David Ottenstein, Hank Paper, J.D. Richey, Lyn Bell Rose, Joseph Saccio, Charles Santarpia, Martha Savage, K Levni Sinanoglu, Joseph Smolinski, Kevin Van Aelst, Thuan Vu, Jonathan Waters, Marjorie Wolfe and Aicha Woods.

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Friday, June 14, 2013

Anita Soos and Ken Lovell at Gallery 195; reception in September

Gallery 195
195 Church St., 4th floor (First Niagara Bank), New Haven, (203) 772-2788
Anita Soos and Ken Lovell
Jun. 18—Sept. 20, 2013.
Artists' Reception: Tues., Sept. 10, 5-7 p.m.

Press release from the Arts Council of Greater New Haven

The Arts Council of Greater New Haven presents an exhibition of works by Connecticut artists Anita Soos and Ken Lovell at Gallery 195. The exhibition will be on display during bank hours from June 18 to Sept. 20, 2013. An artists’ reception is scheduled for Tues., Sept. 10, from 5—7 p.m. The public is invited to attend and meet the artists at this closing reception.

Curated by Debbie Hesse, The Arts Council's director of artistic services & programs, the exhibit pairs the artists because both create abstract rhythms through the use of color, texture and pattern.

"While Anita Soos creates painterly prints that are atmospheric and reference the landscape, Ken Lovell, a digital painter, programs random elements from computer generated templates," Hesse said. "Both artists explore the balance of chance and choice, as dictated by the processes and materials inherent in their respective mediums."

Anita Soos graduated from Endicott College in 1968 and is the owner of Anita Soos Design, Inc., a Connecticut-based design company specializing in mail order, product development, greeting card design and advertising for a select group of clients.

Artwork by Anita Soos

In her artistic pursuits, Soos’ primary medium is paint, but also uses pastel, printmaking, drawing and mixed media. In her artist's statement, she says that she has created bodies of work based on the observations of water and photographic studies for the past 25 years.

"I am continually struck by the notion that the chaos in nature is perfectly ordered. The quality of light, the movement of the water, the time of day, low tide, high tide, wind, calm, sun, rain, clouds, storm. These all converge into a single moment that is singular, never to be repeated," Soos says..
Lovell received his MFA in painting from Yale University in 1992 and currently works at the institution as the technical director of the Digital Media Center for the Arts.

"My working method involves both digital means and traditional fine art concerns," Lovell explains in his artist’s statement. "Random elements and research material are programmatically combined using a digital collage technique of my creation. With these computer-generated templates as a starting point an image evolves, serially, with printed matter being altered by subjective physical performance. This mechanism of production allows elements of chance (the voice of the medium) to co-exist with painterly choices.".

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Monday, June 10, 2013

Opening reception for Katie Bassett "Seamless" show at Trailer Box Gallery in Danbury Saturday

Trailer Box Gallery
15 Great Pasture Rd., Unit 15, Danbury, (203) 797-0230
Kastie Bassett: Seamless
June 8—Aug. 15, 2013.
Opening Reception: Sat., June 15, 5—8 p.m.

Press release from Trailer Box Gallery

Fresh from her first year in Western Connecticut State University's Master of Fine Arts program, Bethel, Connecticut artist Katie Bassett will be showing a solo exhibition of her mixed media installation work at Danbury's Trailer Box Gallery at Jim Felice Studios from June 8 through Aug. 17. An opening reception for the show, Seamless, will be held on Sat., June 15 from 5 to 8 p.m, and Bassett has organized an interactive project for those who attend: a "braiding social," designed to intertwine the construction of art and relationships. A large part of Bassett's recent work has involved braiding and weaving materials such as yarn and black contractor garbage bags.

"[The braiding social] is about people getting together over coffee or a glass of wine to share their experiences and make new memories," Bassett explains. "The constructing of art can be a very personal journey. I have recently come to realize that letting people into the experience can be extremely powerful and special."

In a similar vein, Bassett is planning a special spread of foods to be enjoyed at her reception: via social media, she'll be putting out an invitation to friends, followers, and acquaintances to collaborate with her in the kitchen. She's looking to help people prepare and serve their family recipes to build even further on the spirit of sharing and participation.

Katie Bassett: "Red Shoes Braid"

Bassett, who is co-curator at The Mercurial Gallery in Danbury and a long-time collaborator with sculptor Jim Felice, began this past semester by dismantling all of the work she had constructed during her first months in the MFA program, ironing the various pieces, then weaving and sealing them into a wall-mounted series of 8" by 5" by 1.5" rectangles. The piece, "Interwoven Semester," will be on display in Seamless along with other works she has created within the past semester, including "One Connection Left," a piece constructed with braided garbage bags, and "Nothing" a delicate piece made of window screen and garbage bags. This will be Bassett's first exhibition of this scale.

"The primary interest I address in my work is to push the limits of what the materials will allow, while finding a delicate balance between hues of black," Bassett says. "I utilize a large range of domestic materials to represent fragments of my existence as an artist and a woman. Instead of trying to replicate an object or emotion, I believe it is essential to express it. All of my work expresses the need to rebuild what has been altered by breaking my own preconceived rules of art, expression, and materials. The pieces are reflections of my own inner dynamics alongside observation and participation in relationships—abstractly representing my footprint in this perishable existence."

Bassett aims to express emotions abstractly; she feels representational work can fall short in this area. "I'm interested in constructing work, being so involved with the work that it becomes a true extension of myself and my relationship to others."

A milestone in this endeavor is Seamless: a body of work inspired by life. "I came up with Seamless in the thought of transition," says Bassett. "Moving from a style of work and a life I had become complacent in to changing it around completely. Hopefully seamlessly."

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Sunday, June 09, 2013

Reception for Paper New England show at Artspace Saturday

Paper New England at Artspace
555 Asylum Ave., Hartford, 06103
Our Expanding Circle
June 15—July 14, 2013.
Opening reception: Sat., June 15, 6:30-9 p.m.

Press release from Paper New England

Paper New England (PNE) is pleased to present Our Expanding Circle, its 5th Anniversary Show Celebration. Consistent with PNE’s mission of expanding its network of exceptional artists working on paper, PNE has invited 14 artists who have previously shown with the organization to introduce a highly regarded peer to participate together in this exhibit. We are grateful to participating PNE artists for introducing us to a favored peer and we welcome them into our circle.

Artist include Alexis Brown, Susan Clinard, Pat Carrigan, Maggie Nowinski, Robert Dente, Walter Kendra, Jenny Freidman, Matt Best, Anne Hebebrand, Kim Sobel, Nona Hershey, Randy Garber, Chet Kempczynski, John Kempczynski, Jenny Knaus, Patricia Weiss, Martha Lewis, Rashmi Talpade, Sabrina Marques, Andres Garces, Dennis Pinnette, Matt O'Donnell, Andrew Rafferty, Brian Shure, Paul Selwyn, Randy Gilman, Jillian Vento and Nick Rice.

Paper/New England is a nonprofit art center dedicated to presenting works of art on or of paper. Co-founded by Michael Shortell and Freddie McInerney, the center displays, collects and promotes art produced by artists who are either New England based or were trained or produced work on or of paper while residing in New England.

Artwork by Robert Dente

The exhibition will be on view from June 15 through July 14, 2013 at Artspace in downtown Hartford. An opening reception will be held on June 15, 6:30—9 p.m.

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Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Friday opening for Margot Nimiroski show at Reynolds Fine Art

Reynolds Fine Art
96 Orange St., New Haven, (203) 498-2200
Making Waves: New Work by Margot Nimiroski
June 7—July 9, 2013.
Artist Reception: Fri., June 7, 5—8 p.m.

Press release from Reynolds Fine Art

Reynolds Fine Art is pleased to present Margot Nimiroski in her first solo exhibition at the gallery. The show will be on view from June 7 through July 9. There is a reception Fri., June 7, from 5—8 p.m.

Margot Nimiroski: from the "Harbor" series

The new landscape and seascape paintings by Nimiroski are very soft and ethereal. Yet, they express energy and movement through a process of layering and pouring paint onto the final surface. This self-taught artist does not use brushes, but prefers sponges and soft cloths to get the desired effect. Nimiroski has lived near or on the water for most of her adult life and her paintings represent a love of the sea.

The Branford Harbor is her constant source of inspiration—always changing and always beautiful. However, her paintings are not specific to Connecticut and could be any beautiful body of water. These works not only capture the tranquility of the harbor, but the liveliness of the waves.

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"Sophisticated Absurdities" opening at Paris in Plantsville this Saturday

Paris in Plantsville Gallery and Studio
15 West Main St., Plantsville, (860) 426-1149
Sophisticated Absurdities
Jun. 18—29, 2013.
Opening Reception: Sat., June 8, 6—9 p.m.

Press release from Paris in Plantsville

Curator and participating artist – Clinton Deckert of Southington. Featured Artists: Jon Eastman of Bloomfield, Barbara Hocker of Coventry, Florin Ion Firimita of Winchester, Joshua Smith of Farmington.

Beginning June 8, five Connecticut artists will join forces to display artwork that varies widely in mediums, styles and techniques. The exhibition, Sophisticated Absurdities, creates a stunning visual harmony that can be appreciated by any viewer who enjoys the liberty of the imagination.

The show’s curator and participating artist, Clinton Deckert, believes the work is an exploration of process. The end result is a visual documentation of that creative journey. It is honest art produced by artists who push the limits beyond the usual and defines some of the best fine art in our region.

Sophisticated Absurdities features a variety of artistic styles from local artists. Florin Ion Firimita is a dada-esque, although intentional, mixed media artist whose collage work seems to reflect an altered lens of a kaleidoscope. Jon Eastman is a constructivist mixed media artist who rescues and repurposes random found materials into new relevance as post-consumer modernism. Barbara Hocker is a mixed media/encaustic artist who uses photography in motion and sometimes blizzard conditions to capture fleeting moments, then encases them in encaustic. Joshua Smith and Clinton Deckert are both oil painters. Deckert collides abstract and surreal imagery in an alchemy of fluid thought. Smith paints a "never seen that before" type of dreamlike imagery that evokes distant memories.

Deckert states, "These artists have carved out their own niche by building the foundation of their skills upon the influences of their forebears. The artists and their work seem to echo the influences of Automatism, Dadaism, Expressionism, Bauhaus and the Surrealism. I can't go back in time to those historic periods, but I can select living artists within my realm who remind me of the type of work that solidified my love of the visual arts in the first place. I trust that you will enjoy the resulting exhibition."

Featuring Special Guest on Opening Night: Guitarist, Steve Rutledge!

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Susan Clinard sculpture show on view at Mercy Center

Mercy Center at Madison Mary C. Daly, RSM Art Gallery
167 Neck Rd., Madison, (203) 245-0401
Susan Clinard: Undercurrents
Through June 29, 2013.

Press release from the Mercy Center at Madison

Unfortunately, I missed posting this before last weekend's opening. This show of sculptor Susan Clinard's work will be on display through June 29.

Susan Clinard has explored the essential undercurrents of our human condition; its pain, loss, joy and desire. Come and experience sculptures made from wood, paper, clay, and found objects. Let them take you on a journey of the self and of the other. Part of this exhibit will be a special tribute memorial to the 20 children and 6 teachers who lost their lives at Sandy Hook Elementary last December.

Sculpture by Susan Clinard

New Haven Register, 2011: "Clinard crafts wonderfully evocative works that seem to exist at some mysterious junction between the world of the spirit and that of reality."

The exhibition will be on display at the Mary C. Daly, RSM Art Gallery, Mercy Center from May 31—June 29.

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Sunday, June 02, 2013

Opening of "Water's Edge" show at City Gallery in New Haven Sun., June 9

City Gallery
994 State St., New Haven, (203) 782-2489
Susan Newbold and Brooke Smith: Water's Edge
Jun. 6—29, 2013.
Opening Reception: Sun., Jun. 9, 2—5 p.m.

Press release from City Gallery

City Gallery is presenting Water's Edge, an exhibition of prints, paintings, and drawings by Susan Newbold combined with photographs by her daughter, Brooke Smith, from Jun. 6—29. The Opening Reception is Sun., Jun.9, from 2—5 p.m.

Susan Newbold: "Rock of Ages" detail

The work focuses on the magic that occurs where land meets water. Paintings, prints, and drawings are combined with the photography of Newbold’s daughter, Brooke Smith. The two have a shared passion for this amazing aspect of nature and the infinite variety of ways it is expressed. The combination of media lend original definition to this phenomena which has intrigued artists for centuries.

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Saturday, June 01, 2013

Photo show opening reception Sat., Jun. 8, at Gallery at Still River Editions in Danbury

The Gallery at Still River Editions
128 East Liberty St., Danbury, (203) 791-1474
Nearly Forgotten: Photographs by Catherine Vanaria
Jun. 8—Sept. 27, 2013.
Special CT Open House Day and Opening Reception: Sat., Jun. 8, Noon—5 p.m.

Press release from The Gallery at Still River Editions

Catherine Vanaria: "Top Hat"
Nearly Forgotten is a solo exhibition of black and white photographs by Catherine Vanaria. Catherine Vanaria has been photographing hats in the collection of the Danbury Museum and Historical Society since 2011. Vanaria's hat photographs are softly focused, and are carbon pigment printed on rice paper, making them look solid, but ethereal. The hats serve not just as artifacts, but as documents of the eras from which they originated. Their value is reinforced by being photographed. In addition to her original photography, she has also curated a selection of "salvaged" photographs of hats that tie into her own.

Catherine Vanaria, who is a resident of New Fairfield, CT is an Assistant Professor of Photography at Western Connecticut State University. She has been a fine art photographer and professional photographic printmaker for over 30 years. She is co-owner of Connecticut Photographics. Her first book, The Boston Years: The Music Scene in Photos, was published in 2008 by Laughing Camera Press, Danbury, CT. She received an M.F.A. in Visual Arts from the Art Institute of Boston, Boston, MA in January 2012.

The opening reception is part of Connecticut's statewide Open House Day. There will be refreshments and the gallery will be open from noon—5 p.m. The photographer will be giving an artist's talk at 3 p.m.

Artist's Statement:

We are all collectors. We have albums and shoeboxes of stuff that we’ve removed from our shelves and put into storage for safekeeping. But something happens when things are removed from our sight. Connections to memories kept under cover get diffused and are slowly forgotten.

For the past three years, I’ve been exploring Danbury’s history through the archives of the Danbury Museum and local tag and estate sales to build my own understanding of the lost stories of this area. I’m creating my own historical archive by collecting and photographing objects found at these locations that might otherwise be destined for the trash bin.

This on-going photographic project ebbs and flows with each new discovery. I am attempting to bring both the past and present day histories together to comment on our changing country, bringing forth the old stories that have settled this community to question its future.

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