Life & Style
Summer Arts Festival on the Essex Town Green
Gusto for Men soap bars by Eric and Cathy Phinney )
Fairy wings earrings, Sue Braden Hull )
Cinnammon twist earrings, Robert Kelsey )
Bluebirds, mixed media collage on canvas, Penny Feder )
Summer Time, archival print, Sergio Villaschi )
New work of emerging and established fine artists and artisans from Connecticut, New England, and the tristate region will be featured at the fourth annual Summer Arts Festival on the Essex Town Green, 12 Main Street, Essex, Saturday, June 15 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, June 16 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Presented by the Arts Center Killingworth and Spectrum Gallery in Centerbrook, the festival will feature original artwork by painters—both representational and abstract—working in oil, acrylic, watercolor, pastel, alcohol ink, and mixed media collage. Also featured will be new work by fine art photographers, potters, glass artisans, and jewelry designers using gold, sterling silver, beads, copper, and semi-precious stones.Concurrent Group Show
In addition to the outdoor arts festival, this annual summer event includes a concurrent six-week group show at Spectrum Gallery and Store, 61 Main Street, Centerbrook, with a juried selection of artwork by participating festival artists. Running through Sunday July 14, the exhibit at the gallery offers paintings, as well as new mixed media, fine art photography, and artisanal crafts.
New and returning artists presenting at the festival include painters Jeff Blazejovsky who works in watercolor, graphite and colored pencil, focusing on seascapes and boating scenes; Jena Audette, who explores abstract mixed media and creates what she calls “inklings,” made with alcohol inks, paper, and other materials; and Kimberly Edwards, an emerging artist whose works are primarily in pastel, often of impressionistic images of figures and nature and with themes related to her passions as a pilot and a competitive cyclist. Also presenting are watercolorists Michelle Urso and Ursula Coccomo, who, in addition to watercolor, creates fine art photography, often of scenes of nature.Prints, Photos, Candles, Soap
Printmaker and festival favorite Penny Feder returns to the green with new work. She is known for her mastery of multi-block color woodcuts and etchings that combine traditional techniques with hand painted color. Her recent mixed-media collage work interweaves oils and acrylic pigments, torn paper, fibers, and varnish. Painter Pam Carlson is showing her land and waterscapes scenes in acrylic; Jayne Franzino-Romero displays her acrylic paintings of lighthouses and the sea. Deborah Churchill crafts mandala artwork using a technique called “dotism,” painting with small, distinct dots of color in patterns to form elaborate images; Churchill employs geometric patterns such as Fibonacci sequence style and sacred geometry with acrylics on canvas, plates and rocks.
Photographers include Faith and Larry Bilansky, both offering digital archival prints with rich, vibrant colors for bold effects; Judith Secco, a digital photographer who developed her own technique using layers, textures and composites; Karen Burke, whose images create fantasy moments of animals and nature; and returning favorite Larry Reitz, who captures various scenes including stunning river and waterfall images on canvas. Deborah Simmons and Lisa Conti return with their photographic images enhanced with pen and ink to add contrast and to heighten textural features. Other returning photographers include Normand Charlette, Paul Ramsey, Robert Thomas, and the award-winning Sergio Villaschi.
Many fine artisans will exhibit and sell their creations including potter Nancy Scilipote, candlemaker Janice Wood, and soap artisans Cathy and Eric Phinney. New to the festival is Cristina Lugo, who, originally from Puerto Rico, creates framed scenes of nature with sea glass, paper, and shadow boxes to reflect her love for the sea. Fine jewelry can be found in varying materials and styles by designers such as Jeni-Gray Roberts, Monique Tobet, Robert Kelsey, Sue Braden Hull, Joan Wenzel, Lori Meehan, Linda Saucier, and Sandra Huber.
More information is available by visiting spectrumartgallery.org or calling 860-767-0742. Gallery hours are Wednesday to Saturday, noon to 6 p.m., and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m.