Tag: woodstock artists association and museum

AMR Open Studios Tour Celebrates Its Eighth Anniversary This Summer

Art is at home in the Catskill Mountains. A tradition started by Thomas Cole and his disciples in the early 1800s has transformed the area into a place for pilgrimage where artists from all over the world come to create and be inspired. An influx of creatives moving out of Brooklyn in recent years has infused the area with energy and spearheaded the emergence of new projects and initiatives to create and show new works by artists at various levels in their careers and working in all disciplines.

AMR Artists, a newly formed artist coalition affiliated with the AMR (Andes-Margaretville-Roxbury) Open Art Studios Tour, which takes place every year the last weekend in July, has stepped up to the plate to offer new opportunities for artists. According to its mission statement, “The AMR Artists Coalition supports a vibrant cultural life for our community by promoting and advocating on behalf of the area’s artists and cultural institutions. The Coalition recognizes that a creative environment is an essential component of energetic civic life and sustained economic growth in the community.” The group’s motto is a quote by Albert Einstein: “Creativity is contagious, pass it on.”

Launched in 2012, AMR Open Art Studios Tour has grown into a major cultural attraction, as art tours have become more and more common all over the country. Studio visits trigger questions that aren’t often asked in formal settings such as galleries and museums, and allow for a more intimate interaction with the art work. As art historian George Philip LeBourdais eloquently articulated in a piece for Artsy magazine, “The studio is where strange magic happens, as much for the artist’s imagination as for the public’s. It’s the conjuring place of new concepts, styles, or forms. Sometimes it even comes to be seen as sacred, a place where visitors become pilgrims to the altar of art.”

Helene Manzo's Easel
Painter Helene Manzo’s Studio in Roxbury’s Historic District. © Simona David

AMR (Andes – Margaretville – Roxbury) Open Studios Tour 2019 will take place Saturday and Sunday, July 27 – 28 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. with close to thirty participating artists and artisans working in all disciplines – painters, sculptors, photographers, printmakers, ceramicists, furniture designers and textile artists. Located in a bucolic scenery, all studios will provide unique experiences for visitors to explore the area and learn directly from the artists.

Participating artists this year include: Lisbeth Firmin, Ellen Wong, Gail Freund, Tabitha Gilmore-Barnes, Gerda Van Leeuwen, Peter Yamaoka, Margaret Leveson, Helene Manzo, Frank Manzo, Gary Mayer, Gary Mead, Rosamond Welchman, and others.

Gail Freund, a new artist affiliated with the group, moved to the area in 2016 after having worked in New York City for over forty years in the fields of illustration, theater and jewelry. Formally trained at the Parsons School of Design, Freund has always drawn and painted. However, after moving to the Catskills, she became fully immersed into studying and depicting trees the likes of which she hadn’t quite seen while living in Manhattan. Her life in the Catskills allows far more time for studying and drawing nature scenes, she explains. Her approach is simple and direct.

Gail Freund Shows During the AMR Art Tour in 2018. Photo Credit Simona David
Gail Freund during AMR Open Studios Tour in 2018. © Simona David

The artist works in three disciplines: ink on paper, embroidery, and book art. Asked about her drawings, Freund explains: “I had to start somewhere, and ink on paper seemed simple and an easy way to get back into drawing.” The landscapes, all in black and white, are an invitation for the viewer to imagine a larger context than the one strictly depicted by the artist. Some of these are currently part of a show at the Catskill Watershed Corporation in Margaretville paradoxically called “Local Color: In Black and White.” The show will remain on view through July 5.

The Big Daddy
Big Daddy at the American Visionary Museum in Baltimore. Source: Facebook

In 2017 Freund joined a group called Catskilled Crafters led by Wendy Brackman to create a project called The Ties That Bind, cutting and sewing together pieces of old ties donated by the community. The group created a piece called Big Daddy, currently on display at the American Visionary Museum in Baltimore in the Father Room as part of an exhibit called Parenting: An Art without a Manual, which will remain on view through September 1. NPR recently did a story on this, which ran on Father’s Day. The group sewed 1,462 hexagons into a nine-foot striped tie made out of hundreds of men’s ties and one wool suit. Brackman, who spearheaded the project, explains: “My dad was a bit of a dandy. He shaved every day, he looked good, he put himself together with his collar and wide ties.” Brackman is known as a performance artist (“Wacky Wendy”), as well as paper milliner (“Wacky Hat”).

Freund’s embroidery has gained attention due to its quirkiness and bold colors, but also extreme precision. Fascinated by road signs, the artist managed to capture some of the more vivid ones in a series shown recently at various locations throughout the area. One of these embroideries has received an award at the Woodstock Artists Association and Museum (WAAM) Spring Show, marking WAAM’s centennial. Asked about her interest in embroidery, the artist explains that she was looking for the perfect excuse to slow down and meditate, and that came in the form of making embroidery.

Gail Freund Award-Winning Embroidery at WAAM Small Works Show. Contributed Photo
Embroidery by Gail Freund, awarded at the WAAM’s Spring Show. Contributed Photo.

This year Freund is also working with a group of book artists led by Hedi Kyle to create fabric books, a multi-disciplinary project that will be shown in 2020. All artists are being given the same theme and size of the project, but each approach will be different. Kyle, who is coordinating the project, is a book conservator and educator, and co-founder of the Book Preservation Center at the New York Botanical Garden. As head conservator at the American Philosophical Society in Philadelphia, and as an adjunct professor in the Graduate Program for Book Arts and Printmaking at the University of the Arts, Kyle had trained and mentored a generation of conservators and book artists. The oldest artist in this group is Polly Vos, who is 94.

bowie.4x6_.embroidery and fabric paint on linen.April.2019
Postcard Embroidery by Gail Freund. Contributed Photo.

Freund will be showing her works during the AMR (Andes-Margaretville-Roxbury) Open Art Studios Tour, sharing studio space with painter Deborah Ruggerio. Ruggerio’s studio is located at 54096 State Highway 30 in Roxbury.

Landscape painter Ellen Wong has participated in the AMR (Andes-Margaretville-Roxbury) Open Art Studios Tour every year since it launched in 2012; she describes the experience as a positive one, and a great opportunity to show and talk about the setting where her art comes to life. Wong has been painting the Catskills since the 1970s, when she opened her studio in Roxbury. Initially trained as an abstract painter, she discovered that what she really wanted to do was landscape: “I noticed that every time I went somewhere I always brought with me my watercolors, and I always sketched where I was; somehow that’s how I got to understand, absorb or take in a new environment – I felt very sensitive to place,” she explains. “Does the world need another landscape?” she muses, but then she adds: “I can’t help it.”

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Esopus After the Rain, 12″ x 16″, oil on canvas, 2019 by Ellen Wong. Contributed Photo.

The recipient of many grants and fellowships, including the New York State Council on the Arts Decentralization Grant Program, as well as a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, Wong studied in the Art Department at Brooklyn College with Philip Pearlstein, known for reviving realist figurative painting in the 1960s. Pearlstein’s departure from Abstract Expressionism back then made him a renegade in the art world. It’s that kind of artistic sensibility and daring attitude that Wong had learned from Pearlstein.

Capturing the beauty of the environment but also the ordinary and the banal turns her experiences into markers for posterity. “I want to have a signature,” Wong explains. I want people to say “Oh, that’s Ellen Wong,” whenever they see my paintings. I like to ask deep questions, not necessarily seeking answers, but just asking questions that lead me to a path of my own. “I’d like to go deeper. Does painting the environment, water, for instance, which is life in my paintings, lead one to think of Flint, Michigan, for instance?”

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Wong’s Studio in Roxbury. Contributed Photo.

Wong follows a dictum by Lois Dodd: “paint where you are.” That leads the artist to creating a space uniquely hers. She now reads Ninth Street Women: Lee Krasner, Elaine de Kooning, Grace Hartigan, Joan Mitchell, and Helen Frankenthaler: Five Painters and the Movement That Changed Modern Art, a book by Mary Gabriel that chronicles the lives of these women not as muses but as artists themselves. Ninth Street is a block away from where Wong herself lives in New York City. She reflects on how abstract expressionism was a revolt against portraiture and landscape. But changes in society always call for a different language.

Wong’s studio, which will be open during the AMR Open Art Studios Tour, is located at 121 Shephard Lane in Roxbury.

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Studio 190. Contributed Photo.

New this year, the AMR Art Tour is partnering with Studio 190 in Walton to show works by artists affiliated with this group as part of the two-day event. Studio 190 is a collaborative art program within The Arc of Delaware County, encouraging self-expression, exploration, creativity and teamwork, and providing support for artists to work in a professional studio, equipped with all the necessary tools and guidance from visiting artists.

Leah Schmidt, the program coordinator, explains that up to 35 artists have been taking part in this program so far. They work in different disciplines, although painting is the predominant activity. Some of the artists attend the program every day, while others participate in only one block per week, depending on their skills and dedication, although the most important achievement is to maintain a level of enjoyment so that all the participants have a meaningful experience.

Since 2017 the program has continued to grow under the guidance of art consultants and accomplished artists and educators such as Alan Powell, who have been working with Studio 190 to help branch out more into the community and ensure recognition for the art created in the studio. Under Powell’s guidance the group created the “Selfie” project inviting each participant’s creativity into portraying their own vision of how they see themselves and making personalized works that then can be shared with the community. The project is documented through the group’s Instagram feed as well as its website.

The “Selfie” project as well as other works will be shown during the AMR (Andes-Margaretville-Roxbury) Open Art Studios Tour on Saturday and Sunday, July 27 – 28 at the Community Church located at 904 Main Street in Fleischmanns.

For maps and more information, visit http://www.amropenstudios.org/ and www.facebook.com/amropenstudios/.

The AMR – Andes, Margaretville, Roxbury – Open Studios Tour 2019 is funded by the Delaware County Department of Economic Development – Tourism Advisory Board, and the A. Lindsay and Olive B. O’Connor Foundation, and by 28 participating artists and 44 community business sponsors. Additional community support comes from the Longyear Gallery (Margaretville) and the MARK Project (Arkville).

SPONSORED STORY

© 2019 Simona David

We’ve Covered a Lot in Two Years

Adam Cohen’s Clairvoyant. © Simona David
Brian Tolle
With sculptor Brian Tolle. © Simona David
James Kleinert Art Center
James / Kleinert Art Center in Woodstock. © Simona David
Landscape painter Margaret Leveson. © Simona David
Ceramicist Peter Yamaoka. © Simona David
The Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice. © Simona David
WAAM
Woodstock Artists Association and Museum. © Simona David
John Burroughs’ Woodchuck Lodge in Roxbury, New York. © Simona David

 

artinthecatskills.com

At the Woodstock Writers Festival

The Woodstock Writers Festival just concluded its seventh season – read my article at Upstater.com. The festival was co-sponsored this year by The New School.

The Fiction Panel "What If?" moderated by Ann Hood
The Fiction Panel “What If?” moderated by Ann Hood
James / Kleinert Art Center
James / Kleinert Art Center
Woodstock Artists Association and Museum
Woodstock Artists Association and Museum
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Golden Notebook Bookstore

© 2016 Simona David

 

Weekend in the Catskills – 2/5/2016

This weekend:

  • Several art shows at the WAAM in Woodstock;
  • A traditional Ice Harvest Festival at Hanford Mills Museum in East Meredith;
  • And the City of Cooperstown’s annual Winter Carnival.

Find more at Upstater.com.

Featured Artist: Molly Rausch

Molly Rausch is a stamp artist. Her work has been exhibited throughout the Hudson Valley, New York City, Washington DC, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Barcelona, Oaxaca (Mexico), and Prilep (Macedonia), and is in numerous private and public collections. Molly’s work often deals with themes of communication and thresholds. She has participated in several public art projects, including a Lost and Found Drawing Booth in 2009. Her first museum exhibition was at the Museo de Filatelia in Oaxaca, Mexico in 2014. In 2015 she participated in the 58th Annual Contemporary Art Colony in Prilep, Macedonia: Molly’s work will be featured on an official Macedonian postage stamp in 2016. Molly holds an MFA in Painting from SUNY New Paltz, and a BA from St. Mary’s College in Maryland. She grew up in Maryland.

Turner Ship, 2 3/4" x 2 5/8", watercolor, gouache, postage stamp, 2015 by Molly Rausch
Turner Ship, 2 3/4″ x 2 5/8″, watercolor, gouache, postage stamp, 2015 by Molly Rausch. © Molly Rausch. Contributed Photo.

Simona David: How did you become an artist?

Molly Rausch: It’s a tough question, because I don’t really know how does one become anything. But I’ve always loved drawing. I have three sisters, and we’re all about two years apart, so we’re a little bit of a competitive family. I remember when my oldest sister was given some oil pastels – they were given to her because she was considered the artist of the family. I remember I was very upset, I thought that was unfair. The only reason she was drawing better than me at the time was that she was four years older. And I really wanted to have those pastels. I think that you find what you love to do, and that’s what you end up doing.

SD: I believe Picasso said that all children are artists, the question is how to remain an artist once you grow up. Are your parents artists?

MR: My mom draws, and my dad is a wood worker, but they aren’t visual artists. My father is a doctor, and my mother is a teacher. But to answer your question, how does one remain an artist once one grows up, for me it was about establishing a studio practice when I studied art in school. How do you continue to make art? What are your requirements? How do you like to work?

SD: You have formal training as an artist. What does it mean to be formally trained as an artist? And do you have any mentors or influencers?

MR: As an undergraduate I majored in studio art. The art classes were the hardest, and that’s where I felt I was learning the most. As a graduate student at SUNY New Paltz I had some amazing art teachers. It was important to have concentrated time to work in the studio. Literally it’s just a practice: you go in, and practice, and figure out what your practice is going to be like. I remember seeing a Jacob Lawrence exhibition in college, and that’s what made me work in gouache. Otherwise, it’s just a slow evolution. I usually work in series, and one series leads to the next. It’s one step at a time.

The Oldest Story In The World, 3 x 3 3/8", watercolor, gouache, postage stamp, 2015 by Molly Rausch
The Oldest Story In The World, 3″ x 3 3/8″, watercolor, gouache, postage stamp, 2015 by Molly Rausch. © Molly Rausch. Contributed Photo.

SD: Do you always work from memory, or from photography, or with the subject matter in front of you? 

MR: I don’t like working from photography, I draw from observation. I like to see what happens when you try to depict things from observation and memory, and remember all the changes that happen. I have two main threads in my work right now: the postage stamp paintings, and a larger series of oils on plywood. For the postage stamp paintings I am using stamps as reference, but for the oil series I am working from observation.

SD: You are working both on very small works like the stamp paintings, and large ones like the oil paintings. It seems to me that it takes two different sets of skills to work on small and large scale. What do you think? 

MR: I like having both threads going, and bounce back and forth between the two.

Qbert, 3 1/8" x 2 7/8", watercolor, gouache, postage stamp, 2015 by Molly Rausch
Qbert, 3 1/8″ x 2 7/8″, watercolor, gouache, postage stamp, 2015 by Molly Rausch. © Molly Rausch. Contributed Photo.

SD: From the viewer’s perspective is different too: these are two very different kinds of experience. I have the feeling that I see more details in small works.

MR: When it comes to the postage stamp paintings, I really like having that intimacy, I like having something small that’s going to make someone walk up to the wall and get very close to see what’s going on. It changes the way one relates to the artwork. When it comes to a small piece of art, you can relate to it as if it were a book: you can pick it up and hold it in your hands. You’re going to relate in a completely different way to a large oil painting. You step further away. And it’s different when it comes to painting it as well. My large work is very simplified. When you think that something is bigger, you’d think there is more information on it.

SD: Let’s talk about the artistic process: how do you start a new project?

MR: I work in series. I’m usually inspired by some new material that I’m introduced to. I have the material, and I have a problem to solve: how am I going to use this material? I play around with it until I hit on something. I get excited, and I create a series. Maybe I have twenty – thirty pieces, and then it feels like it’s done, and I don’t feel like I’m learning anything new from it anymore. Then I look for new inspiration and some new material to work with.

SD: Now let’s talk about your postage stamp art. What triggered your interest in mail art?

MR: The postage stamp paintings started with a bookbinding project. In 1997 – 1998 I took a bookbinding class. I was working on this very tiny book about 3 inch square. I didn’t know what to put in it. And it sat empty for a year or so, and then I finally started to draw on it, and I messed up my drawing on my first page. I needed something to cover it up. And I had this envelope full of old letters and stamps that my dad had given me – my dad used to collect stamps. They were all early 1900s, very beautiful. And because they happened to be the right size, I glued a stamp down on this little book to cover my bad drawing, and it just looked really nice in there. Then I glued another one on the next page, but this one looked like it needed a little bit more space on one side of it. The composition of the stamp was too symmetrical for me, so I glued it down and extended the horizon a little bit. The next page I thought that it needed some sky, so I added a little bit of sky. You can look through this book, and see the ideas grow from there. By the fifth page I thought I might be into something. That led me to drawing up maps on pieces of plywood. I did a whole series of paintings on that. Those were large, like 3 by 4 feet.

Ramirez Train, 3 1/8" x 3 3/8", watercolor, gouache, postage stamp, 2015 by Molly Rausch
Ramirez Train, 3 1/8″ x 3 3/8″, watercolor, gouache, postage stamp, 2015 by Molly Rausch. © Molly Rausch. Contributed Photo.

SD: Were you familiar at the time with other stamp artists? I believe this movement was started by the Dadaists in the 1920s. You did explain how you make your stamp art: you start with a stamp, then you build around it, and you imagine a world outside that stamp, as if the stamp was larger, and included a larger scene.

MR: Yes. I glue down the stamp and I basically just paint around it. I don’t paint on it, and I don’t research it. I just stare at it for a while, and figure out the edges: I figure out what needs to go in the final composition. As far as the content goes, I feel like it’s already there for me, like I’m following the cues that are in the original work from the original artist. I work in watercolor and gouache. And, all my postage stamp paintings are actually about 3 by 3 inches, they’re very small. If you make them too big, then the illusion disappears. Right now as small as they are, there is a moment when people are looking at them, and actually they look at a few in a row, and then suddenly I hear them say “oh, there is a stamp in there.” It takes them a little bit to see it, and then they go back, and they go around the room, and say “oh, there is a stamp in everyone of them.” I really like that moment of discovery.

Mister Durand, 3 1/8" x 3", watercolor, gouache, postage stamp, 2015 by Molly Rausch
Mister Durand, 3 1/8″ x 3″, watercolor, gouache, postage stamp, 2015 by Molly Rausch. © Molly Rausch. Contributed Photo.

SD: What amazes me about your work is the color palette that you use: you manage to stay on the same color palette that’s on the original stamp, and the brushstroke is also similar to the stamp as if it was done by the same artist.

MR: I feel like the mockingbird of watercolors. I get to play with different styles. I am trying to match the style and the color of the stamp; people often ask me how I match the color.

SD: Just to clarify: each of these postage stamp paintings is unique: you don’t reproduce and you don’t make any prints. Is that right?

MR: Yes, that’s true.

SD: Do you name these postage stamp paintings?

MR: Some of them have titles. There was a series I did on currencies, and those had titles. Sometimes the title is important. But for the most part the titles that I make up are just descriptions of the subject, for example French castles.

SD: You currently have a show on view at the Woodstock Artists Association and Museum (WAAM). What is included in this exhibition?

MR: There are twenty-nine paintings, about half of them painted this year. This is a series of postage stamp paintings that I started eighteen years ago. There is a stamp by Frederic Edwin Church for instance that I used in three different paintings, so it’s like a mini-series of paintings each of them less and less finished. I think of them as frames in some unknown film. This was the first time I had the same stamp on more than one painting. And I liked the idea of working in groups. There is also in there a series about currencies. This show will remain on view through January 3.

 Hudson River Church School 3, 3 x 3", watercolor, gouache, postage stamp, 2015 by Molly Rausch

Hudson River Church School 3, 3 x 3″, watercolor, gouache, postage stamp, 2015 by Molly Rausch. © Molly Rausch. Contributed Photo.

SD: You do other kind of work. You also work with typewriters. Let’s talk about that.

MR: I started this series of altered typewriter sculptures five or six years ago. It started with a joke: I was at work, and trying to write an email for some client that I was struggling with, and I made a joke to my co-workers like “I can’t find the sarcasm key on this computer.” At that point I had two typewriters – I still use the typewriter. So I started making these sculptures: take the keys off the typewriter, take all the letters off the keys, put other things in place, then put the typewriter back together. The first thing I made was a typewriter with all the letters blank except for the ones in the very middle where the letters “g” and “h” would be, and just says “yes” and “no.” Sometimes you just want to simplify things, and make them that binary, you just need an answer “yes” or “no.” There is a typewriter I made where all the keys say “me,” “me,” “me.” We’re all guilty of this sometimes. I made another typewriter where I took the “Shift” key off it, and made it “Sarcasm” key. The typewriters are fully functional – I didn’t actually alter the striking key: it doesn’t actually type “yes,” or “no,” or “me.” They still do what they’re supposed to do, they still type the regular alphabet, which is important to me conceptually, because I’m interested in this illusion we have about communication, and how you think you can only talk about one thing, you think you can only say “yes” or “no,” but in reality you could actually say whatever you want to. To me typewriters are beautiful, not just as mechanical objects, but I love the alphabet and the fact that twenty-six letters can be re-arranged to say anything and everything.

SD: What you said made me think of Marshall McLuhan’s famous assertion that “the medium is the message.” You like to write using either a pen, or a typewriter, or a computer. Does each of this medium trigger a different choice of words or perhaps a different thought process?

MR: It’s completely different. There is no editing when it comes to typewriters. I feel like the typewriter is the purist because on a computer I can edit everything, whereas with the typewriter I need more stream of consciousness. With the typewriter whatever comes out in whatever order is what it is, that’s it. Just like talking live on the radio.

SD: You’ve shown your work in many exhibitions throughout North America and Europe. What do these shows mean to you? Earlier this year you participated in an arts residency in Macedonia. What was your experience like? What did you learn?    

MR: It’s always a thrill, it’s always an honor. It’s nice to get things out of my studio, and have other people see them. The opportunity to travel to go to Macedonia this year was amazing.

SD: Talk a little bit about what it means to get ready for a new show.

MR: I remember the first series of paintings that I made, it was very personal. I could never imagine ever parting with these paintings. I also remember thinking that I’d like to be able to show my work, and I can’t hang onto everything forever, and start making things that aren’t so personal. It’s about learning to let go of your artwork and send it out in the world, but there are a few pieces in each series that I think like “no, this one isn’t going anywhere, this one is mine.”

Crop Circles, 3" x 2 3/4", watercolor, gouache, postage stamp, 2015 by Molly Rausch
Crop Circles, 3″ x 2 3/4″, watercolor, gouache, postage stamp, 2015 by Molly Rausch. © Molly Rausch. Contributed Photo.

SD: What are you working on now?

MR: I’m working on a project trying to combine chalk board painting with concrete and piano roll paper. I’m working on a series of larger paintings on plywood that incorporate these three materials. I also have an exhibition coming up next year in New Haven, Connecticut, and I’m working on postage stamp paintings for them. I might include typewriters in this show as well, because the show will be hosted at the Library Institute, a beautiful, old library in New Haven. I’m imaging the postage stamp paintings on the walls and the typewriters set in the middle of the room.

You can find more about Molly Rausch at http://www.mollyrausch.com. You can find more about Molly’s postage stamp paintings at http://postagestamppaintings.com/about/.

All photographs were contributed by the artist.

© 2015 Simona David

Weekend in the Catskills – 12/25/2015

This weekend:

  • Stamp artist Molly Rausch is showing at the Woodstock Artists Association and Museum (WAAM);
  • Samuel F. B. Morse’s Locust Grove Mansion is open for holiday tours;
  • And, the Open Eye Theater in Margaretville presents A Child’s Christmas in Wales by Welsh poet Dylan Thomas.

Read more at Upstater.com.

 

Weekend in the Catskills – 5/8/2015

Mother’s Day this Sunday, May 10: it’s going to be gorgeous weather in the Catskills. Our choices for this weekend are: Lady Day’s centennial concert at Fisher Center, a Balkan Dance Party in Staatsburg, and several art opening receptions in Woodstock, Saugerties and Roxbury.

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Fisher Center

The Aaron Diehl Trio is paying tribute to Billie Holiday this Friday, May 8 at the Fisher Center in Annandale-on-Hudson, Dutchess County. Cécile McLorin Salvant, a Grammy-nominated vocalist, will be joining the trio in a performance that will honor Holiday’s legacy, and celebrate her centennial. Billie Holiday, also known as Lady Day, was born in Philadelphia in April 1915. The centennial concert, sponsored by the Catskill Jazz Factory, begins at 8 p.m. tonight. For more information, visit http://fishercenter.bard.edu/calendar/event.php?eid=128233.

Wassail Balkan Dance Party

Wassail Balkan Dance Party will celebrate its 19th anniversary this Saturday, May 9 at 2 p.m. at Breezy Hill Orchard in Staatsburg, Dutchess County. A twelve-piece brass band will perform Macedonian and Bulgarian dance music. Steve Kotansky will also lead a Balkan dance workshop. Balkan cuisine, including lamb roast, will be served, as well as a variety of artisanal products from local farms. Balkan music originated in South-Eastern Europe, and it’s known for the complexity of its rhythms. For more information about this event, visit http://www.hudsonvalleyfarmhousecider.com/.

Woodstock Artists Association and Museum (WAAM)

Woodstock Artists Association and Museum (WAAM) is hosting Far and Wide, the seventh annual juried art exhibition this Saturday, May 9 at 4 p.m. featuring the works of over thirty regional artists. The event will take place in the Main Gallery. In the Founders Gallery, there is an exhibit of small works. Also, artist Lynn Herring is featured in the Solo Gallery. For more information about these events, visit http://www.woodstockart.org/.

Cross Contemporary Art

Cross Contemporary Art Gallery in Saugerties, Ulster County, is also hosting an opening reception this Saturday, May 9 at 6 p.m. featuring the works of artist Portia Munson. The show called Little Suns, Hollow Bones, speaks about Munson’s interest in environmental issues, and includes works whose subjects range from floral arrangements and blossoms to bones and animal corpses. Munson is an accomplished visual artist whose work has been reviewed in numerous publications including Art in America, The New Yorker and The New York Times. For more information about this show, visit http://www.crosscontemporaryart.com/portia-munson-little-sunshollow-bones/.

Roxbury Arts Group

Roxbury Arts Group (RAG) in Roxbury, Delaware County, is hosting an artist talk this Saturday at 2 p.m. Artist Lisbeth Firmin, whose show Working the Light is on view in the Walt Meade Gallery at RAG, will be talking about her work as a painter and printmaker. Firmin is a realist painter whose work explores the relationship between humans and space. Street scenes as well as a more abstract interpretation of light and shadow are visible in her works. For more information, visit http://roxburyartsgroup.org/2014/08/26/may-9-lisbeth-firmin-artist-talk/.  

Also, this Saturday, May 9 Albany will celebrate the 67th anniversary of its immensely popular Tulip Festival, which speaks about the city’s Dutch heritage. For more details about the Tulip Festival, visit http://www.newyorkupstate.com/albany/2015/04/guide_to_the_2015_albany_tulip_festival_schedule_and_events.html.

Have a fabulous weekend!

Weekend in the Catskills – 3/6/15

For visual art lovers in the Catskills, this is going to be a full weekend – opening receptions at the Roxbury Arts Center, the Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild, the Woodstock Artists Association and Museum, and Mural Art Gallery in Hobart. Also, a basket weaving workshop at the Delaware County Historical Association in Delhi is among many choices this Saturday.

Roxbury Arts Center

Roxbury Arts Center is hosting an opening reception this Saturday, March 7 at 3 p.m. featuring large works by close to twenty local artists working in all media. Painters Helene Manzo, Nat Thomas and Adam Cohen, ceramicists Gerda van Leeuwen and Peter Yamaoka, furniture designer Gary Mead, and weaver Tabitha Gilmore-Barnes are among those represented in this show. The exhibit will run through April 18. For more information, visit http://roxburyartsgroup.org/2014/10/20/march-7-april-12-large-works-2/.

Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild

The Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild is hosting Influence, a show exploring influences and influencers in creating new works of art. The opening reception will take place this Saturday, March 7 at 4 p.m. Curated by photographer Oliver Wasow, the exhibit includes works by Tim Davis, Miranda Lichtenstein, Alexander Ross, Peter Rostovsky, Alix Lambert, and other artists affiliated with the guild. On view at the Kleinert / James Center for the Arts, the show will run through April 19. For more information, visit http://www.woodstockguild.org/ai1ec_event/influence-curators-talk-opening-reception/?instance_id=544.

Woodstock Artists Association and Museum

Woodstock Artists Association and Museum is also hosting an opening reception Something Wild this Saturday, March 7, focusing on colors, wild dreams, landscapes, animals, and brush strokes. Over thirty artists are represented in this exhibit, which runs through April 5. Joan Barker, Amy Rosen, Anthony Margiotta, and Carol Davis are among participating artists. For more information, visit http://www.woodstockart.org/main-gallery/.

MURAL on Main

MURAL is short for Mount Utsayantha Regional Arts League, an organization founded in 1983 to support artistic projects in Stamford – Hobart area of Delaware County. Once a year, MURAL gallery hosts a juried Student Art Show, featuring young artists from all the neighboring schools. The Student Art Show opening reception will take place this Sunday, March 8 at 2 p.m. For more information, visit http://www.muralartgallery.org/.

Delaware County Historical Association

Delaware County Historical Association in Delhi is hosting a Traditional French Wall Basket workshop this Saturday, March 7 from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. Participants will learn how to work with classic rattan and weave functional wall baskets fit to hold keys, gloves, mail, and other small objects. Martha Bremer, an experienced basket weaver, will be teaching this class. Adults and teens are welcome. For more information, visit http://www.dcha-ny.org/news.html.

 

Weekend in the Catskills – 2/6/15

This weekend in the Catskills: several opening receptions, an Ice Harvest Festival, poetry, and more.

Hanford Mills Museum

Contributed photo.
Contributed photo.

Hanford Mills Museum is hosting its traditional Ice Harvest Festival this Saturday, February 7 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Visitors ride in horse-drawn sleighs and help with the removal of big blocks of ice from a frozen mill pond. Ice cleats are being lent to those willing to walk on the frozen pond. Skilled ice carvers using antique tools remove the ice that is then being kept in an ice house similar to those used before refrigeration. The ice is used to make ice cream on the Independence Day in July.

Hanford Mills Museum is located in East Meredith, Delaware County, between Oneonta and Stamford along County Route 10. East Meredith grew as a rural, agricultural community, in and around the mill. Hanford Mills operated as a business from the 1840s to the 1960s. It became a museum in 1973 chartered by the New York State. There are sixteen buildings on the site, and around 50,000 objects and exhibits hosted in twelve buildings. In addition to themed workshops and lectures, the museum hosts several festivals a year, including the Ice Harvest Festival, which traditionally takes place the first Saturday in February. For more information, visit https://artinthecatskills.com/2015/02/03/featured-destination-hanford-mills-museum/.

Delaware County Historical Association

Delaware County Historical Association, located at Frisbee House in Delhi, is hosting a Quilting Workshop this Saturday, February 7 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Adults and children are welcome. Various machine and hand piecing techniques will be taught. Leslie Gray, the workshop leader, an experienced quilter and teacher, was inducted in the Catskill Mountain Quilters Hall of Fame in 2007.

Delaware County Historical Association (DCHA) was founded in 1945. It purchased the Frisbee House in the 1960s. DCHA runs two exhibit galleries, the archives, the research library, as well as a bookstore and a gift shop. The galleries, the bookstore and the gift shop are open year round. Other historic buildings in the Frisbee complex, such as an old schoolhouse and an old blacksmith shop, are open from Memorial Day to mid-October. For more information, visit http://www.watershedpost.com/sponsored/2015/delaware-county-historical-association-offer-quilting-worksh.

Woodstock Artists Association and Museum

Woodstock Artists Association and Museum (WAAM) is hosting an opening reception this Saturday, February 7 from 4 to 6 p.m. showing new works completed by members over the past six months. The show is curated by Nancy Donskoj, owner of the Store Front Gallery in Kingston. Close to fifty artists are featured in this show, including Joan Barker, Nancy Campbell, Mary Katz, Anthony Margiotta, Wilma Miller, and many others.

Founded in 1919, Woodstock Artists Association and Museum (WAAM) supports and showcases the works of local artists. Since 1973 the museum has maintained a permanent collection of the most important paintings, sculptures, prints, photographs, and other decorative objects that were created in the area. Highlights from this collection can be seen online at the Hudson River Valley Heritage’s website http://www.hrvh.org/cdm/landingpage/collection/hvvacc.  Selected works are shown to the public through periodic exhibitions. A catalogue of over five hundred pieces called Woodstock’s Art Heritage: The Permanent Collection of the Woodstock Artists Association was published in 1987.

The museum is open year round. In addition to its main gallery, which hosts group exhibitions, and the middle gallery, for solo artists, the museum has space devoted to children and student artists. For more information visit http://myemail.constantcontact.com/New-Shows-Opening-this-Saturday–February-7.html?soid=1101793785598&aid=4zxUUePE8tg.

blue and red rhapsody

The Center for Photography at Woodstock

The Center for Photography at Woodstock is also hosting an opening reception this Saturday, February 7 from 5 to 7 p.m. Birds of a Feather exhibit features works by artist Claire Rosen portraying exotic birds captured outside their natural habitat. Various bird poses are used to mimic human gestures in an anthropomorphic attempt.

The Center for Photography at Woodstock (CPW) was founded in 1977 to exhibit and support photographic art. CPW hosts exhibitions, and offers workshops and residencies to artists interested in photography. The center also publishes its own quarterly journal called Photography Quarterly (PQ), launched in 1979, and organizes a monthly salon for photographers. The salon is held on the second Tuesday of the month. Since 1980 CPW has maintained an extensive print collection, currently on loan to the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art at SUNY New Paltz.

For more information, visit http://www.cpw.org/upcoming/pr-claire-rosen/.

Glaring Omissions Writers’ Group

Glaring Omissions Writers’ Group in Woodstock is hosting an Evening of Art and Poetry this Sunday, February 8 at 4 p.m. at the Golden Notebook Bookstore on Tinker Street. Poet Nicole Cooley will read from her works, and from a book by Salem Lessons illustrated by artist Maureen Cummins.

The Glaring Omissions Writers’ Group was founded in 1990 by professional writers living in the Hudson Valley area. The group meets regularly, and provides critique and support for its members. Once a month it organizes public readings and other events.

For more information, visit https://www.facebook.com/events/589113721232058/?ref=3&ref_newsfeed_story_type=regular.

Enjoy a fabulous weekend in the Catskills!

© 2015 Simona David

Weekend in the Catskills – 12/26/14

The Catskills are cool! Christmas

Both Travel & Leisure magazine and Fodor listed the Catskills among the best places to travel to in 2015. Also, Condé Nast Traveler has recommended the region for its amazing ski opportunities and delicious food. And also this year Vogue magazine did a beautiful feature of Woodstock, put together a weekend guide to the Catskills, and recommended the region for its abundant arts and crafts fairs.

This weekend there is a lot to do.

Woodstock Artists Association and Museum  

Woodstock Artists Association and Museum presents Georges Malkine: Perfect Surrealist Behavior, an exhibit that opened in October and runs through early January. Twenty-five paintings are shown in this exhibition, as well as some drawings and archival work. Malkine had lived in Woodstock since 1953 until his death in 1970. He is the only artist named by André Breton in his Surrealist Manifesto in 1924 as a founding member of the movement. Malkine was also a writer, illustrator, and actor. For more information about this exhibit, visit http://www.woodstockart.org/.

Locust Grove Mansion

Samuel F. B. Morse, the inventor of the electrical telegraph, used to spend his summers at Locust Grove mansion in Poughkeepsie, Dutchess County. Locust Grove was built in 1851 in the Italianate style. The estate, overlooking the Hudson, includes a large park, and a flower and a vegetable garden, as well as the original ice house, a carriage house, and an art gallery. The Young family, who lived at Locust Grove after Morse’s death in 1872, had donated an extensive collection of art and decorative objects, now part of the museum. The collection includes European masters as well as exponents of the Hudson River School of Painting, exquisite furniture in the Chippendale, Federal and Empire styles, as well as European glass, and porcelain from around the world. Guided tours are offered year round. This time of year the mansion, decorated for the holidays, welcomes visitors daily from December 26 through 31. Twenty-five rooms are lavishly decorated, themed after famous Christmas carols. For more information about Locust Grove, visit http://www.lgny.org/.

Equis Art Gallery

For art and horse lovers, Equis Art Gallery in Red Hook, Dutchess County, offers some of the best equine paintings, photographs, and sculptures, both contemporary and vintage. During the holiday season all artwork is offered at a discounted price. To find more about Equis Art Gallery, visit http://www.equisart.com/. In 1980 the American Academy of Equine Art was founded to amass and exhibit the finest equine art in the country. For more information about this organization, visit http://www.aaea.net.

Bearsville Theater

Lindsey Webster Band will perform at the Bearsville Theater in Woodstock this Friday, December 26 at 9 pm. A Woodstock native, Webster performs R&B, and other popular tunes. Bearsville Theater opened in 1989, and hosts many concerts and theatrical performances throughout the year. Celebrities who either live in Woodstock or come from afar perform on its stage. The theater is also home to WDST and Radio Woodstock. For more information, visit http://www.bearsvilletheater.com.

John Burroughs Association

If you have a little bit of time to write this weekend, it’s good to know that John Burroughs Association organizes an annual nature writing contest. The contest, launched in 1993, honors the legacy of the great Catskills’ naturalist. Submission deadline is January 23. Winners will be announced in early March. An Awards Ceremony will take place Monday, April 6 at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.

John Burroughs is best known for his collections of nature essay such Wake Robin (1871), and Signs and Seasons (1886). The naturalist writer was friends with many luminaries including President Theodore Roosevelt, industrialist Henry Ford, inventor Thomas Edison, and poet Walt Whitman. Burroughs went to school with financier Jay Gould. Born in Roxbury on April 3, 1837, he died in 1921, five days before his 84th birthday.

For more information about the nature writing contest, visit http://www.johnburroughsassociation.org

Enjoy a great weekend in the Catskills!

© 2014 Simona David