Monday, July 31, 2017

"REAL. W3ird." Artist Spotlight - Greg Shea

Join us for the opening of "REAL. W3ird." on August 12 at Southington Community Cultural Arts!  - More Info HERE

Greg Shea
Greg Shea is an award winning artist and craftsman with diverse creative interests including drawing and painting, portraiture, illustration, photography, relief printmaking, sculpture, calligraphy and illuminating, woodworking and custom furniture building, antique frame restoration, book making, carving, jewelry making and silversmithing, and many others. Early in life, he studied engineering, robotics, and drafting before deciding to pursue a career in art. He earned a BFA degree in Illustration from Syracuse University ('94), with minor studies in Metalsmithing and Medieval Studies.
For over twenty years, Greg has worked at the Yale Center for British Art in New Haven, CT, where he is the Senior Museum Preparator. This has allowed him to utilize many of his skills and talents, and has constantly fueled his interests in the arts, art history and natural history, fabrication, conservation and restoration, and collecting. As Senior Preparator, he has been responsible for the safe handling and attractive display of countless objects, from priceless paintings, sculptures, works on paper and rare books, and other artifacts ranging from Catherine the Great's crown jewels, to Charles Darwin's collection of pigeon skulls. He is also responsible for most of the mount making and case fabrication related to exhibitions as well. In addition, Greg has taught classes and workshops at the museum and elsewhere on landscape watercolor painting in the English style for adults, drawing perspective for children, and relief printmaking. He has also given art lessons privately for several years.
Greg's artwork has been accepted into numerous juried exhibitions, and has won several awards, including the R.I.S.D. President's Book Award, the 2014 Purchase Prize and the Lucille Davis Grimm Prize from The New Haven Paint and Clay Club, of which he is an active member.  His work has been exhibited widely at museums and galleries throughout the U.S. including The Society of Illustrators New York, The Delaware Art Museum, The Norman Rockwell Museum, The Museum of Western Art, The Baseball Hall of Fame Museum, The Yale Center for British Art, Erector Square Gallery, the Art League of New Britain, and many others. In 2016, Greg's work was accepted into the Art Renewal Center's 12th Annual Salon, " The most prestigious realist art competition in the Americas and perhaps the world ".

Greg is currently serving as President on the board of directors for The New Haven Paint and Clay Club, and is also on the board of the Art League of New Britain.
"Cadmium And Steel"

Sunday, July 30, 2017

"REAL. W3ird." Film Screening - The Risley Brothers

In addition to the opening reception on August 12 for "REAL. W3ird" please join us for a screening of the Elmwood Productions film "The Risley Brothers" -More Info HERE
"The Risley Brothers" is a comedic story of Wes and Quig, who have just re-opened their father's defunct bar. They are doing their best to keep the place respectable in spite of the local looneys, crazy ex-girlfriends, a visit from the Devil, and even their own bad habits! 
The film is rated PG-13 for some mildly colorful language, cartoon-ish violence, and more stuff we love to laugh about, all involving puppets!

Saturday, July 29, 2017

"REAL. W3ird." Artist Spotlight - Florin Ion Firimita

Join us for the opening of "REAL. W3ird." on August 12 at Southington Community Cultural Arts!  - More Info HERE
"The Offering"
 Florin Ion Firimita

I am a visual artist, educator, and writer. My interest in image making could be traced back to my father’s amateur photo lab in Bucharest, Romania, where I was entrusted with mixing chemicals, developing film, and printing black-and-white images at the age of six.  A passion for drawing and painting started around the same time under the influence of my mother.

While holding jobs such as welder, grave digger, janitor, window decorator, and security guard -  drawing, painting, and photography kept me sane. In 1990, after the fall of the Berlin Wall and the end of the Romanian Revolution, I escaped to the United States.  

My photography, mixed media work and my writing have been featured in hundreds of galleries and art magazines in Argentina, Portugal, France, England, and the U.S. In April 2017, a selection of my photographs was on display at the Museum of Modern Art in Paris.

“The Art of Leaving,” a documentary film about my art, was released in 2003. Based on almost 3,000 pages of journal entries, the film took three years to make and was the official selection of seven international film festival such as Santa Fe, Durango, New York, Chicago, and also Montreal’s 23rd Festival International du Film Sur L’Art. “Reliquary,” a novel based on my experiences, is scheduled for publication.

Between 1990 and 2017 I participated in over 300 exhibits. My artwork could be found in many collections in Europe, Australia, and the United States. In 2010, 2012 and 2013, at Carnegie Hall in New York City, Scholastic awarded me three national gold medals for art teaching and mentoring.

Today I divide my time between rural Connecticut and Europe. My photographic work is represented by the GADCOLLECTION Gallery in Paris, France.

More on the web:

Friday, July 28, 2017

"REAL. W3ird." Artist Spotlight - S.w. Rand

Join us for the opening of "REAL. W3ird." on August 12 at Southington Community Cultural Arts!  - More Info HERE
"Queen Annes"
S.w. Rand
Graduating from The Hartford Art School in 2008 with a BFA in New
Media, S.w. has been a working artist and freelancer ever since. He has
exhibited in esteemed galleries such as AXIOM Gallery (Boston,MA) and
Oceanside Art Gallery (Oceanside,CA) among many others. Currently S.w. is
running a media production and design company (Euphio Films) while creating
new multimedia works on the side. S.w. has been featured in arts journals
and magazines throughout the country; most noteably receiving the cover
of Abstraks magazine and Hartford Courant Itowns.
 "Slay My Bells"

"REAL. W3ird" Artist Spotlight - Wanda Buda

Join us for the opening of "REAL. W3ird." on August 12 at Southington Community Cultural Arts!  - More Info HERE
"In Clover"
Wanda Buda
I've had an interest in art painting most of my life.  After I
retired I was glad to have had the time to experiment and take lessons from various
art teachers, the last of whom was Sean Michanczyk at Paris of Plantsville Gallery. 
There I found that you can only learn so much by yourself. 
The pictures here are a result of art classes at Sean's gallery.
  I've enjoyed various media, but my
preference is painting landscapes in oil. 
Pink Rose"

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

"REAL. W3ird." Artist Spotlight - Johanne M. Beerbaum

Join us for the opening of "REAL. W3ird." on August 12 at Southington Community Cultural Arts!  - More Info HERE
Johanne M. Beerbaum
Primarily self-taught with key workshops by artists including Claudia Post-Freitas, Robert Zappolarti, Paul Leveille, Will McCarthy and David Dunlop, and Frank Covino.  Johanne has been drawing and painting all of her life.  Striving to improve her craft, she’s been working in Pastel, Colored Pencil, Oils and Oil paint Sticks.  Many art reference books have come into play to round out and improve technique.  Many classically trained artists in groups she has joined have been gracious enough to be helpful in nurturing the quest for improvement.

Within the past 5 years there have been 2 first place awards from SACA, several first place awards from the Berlin Fair and a Best in Show for Art at the fair, a second and third place award from the Bethlehem Fair for pastel and oil, and several first, second and third place awards from the Cheshire Grange for photography, oil and pastel.
For the most part original photos are used for portraits and landscapes to get the feel of the subject’s personality.   Some commissions have been done posthumously of loved ones and pets.   She has also done colored portraits from old black and white or sepia photos.   Over the years many commissions have been done of children, adults and beloved pets.

Monday, July 24, 2017

"REAL. W3ird" Artist Spotlight - Michele Tragakiss

Join us for the opening of "REAL. W3ird." on August 12 at Southington Community Cultural Arts!  - More Info HERE
"The Left"
Michele Tragakiss
Michele received her BFA from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and studied graphic design for an additional year at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. After working many years in graphic design she decided to stay home and raise her two boys. 2013 marked a return to her roots as a fine artist. Her most recent series of paintings attempt to bridge the gap between the dream world and reality.

Pulling from an otherworldly place and using multiple layers of paint and glaze, I hope to bring forth a personal story—a visual stream of (sub) consciousness. Most often my paintings begin with only a color scheme in mind. At the start of my work I spread paint in an exhilarating period of complete freedom, energy and expression. Moving paint around the canvas, I’m guided only by my gut and instincts - one color guides another, one shape dictates the next. After this initial development the real work begins—the work of tearing down and rebuilding. There is always struggle  before the resolution but it is in the act of painting that a narrative emerges and perhaps even some meaning from this mysterious place”.

Exhibition History
BWAC Wide Open 8 National Art Show - Brooklyn, NY  2017
Saatchi Art - “Inspired by Cy Twombly” collection 2017
Hartford ArtSpace Gallery - 20th Anniversary Exhibition - Hartford, CT. 2017
SoCCA Juried art competition - Southington, CT. - 2017
Light Space &Time Online Gallery - Abstracts competition - Special Recognition and Special Merit award -  2017
Light Space & Time Online Gallery - City Scape's Competition - Special Merit Award and Special Recognition Award - 2017
Niji - Featured artist of the week - 2016
Paris in Plantsville "FIN-End of an Era" group exhibit - Plantsville, Ct. - 2016
Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery - Abstracts Collection Special Merit Award - 2016
Paris in Plantsville - 6th Annual Juried Exhibit - Plantsville, CT. - 2016
ABEX 2015 Hartford ArtSpace Gallery Hartford, CT. - 2015
Artist of the Day - Saatchi Art 2015
8th Annual Berkshire Salon - North Adams, MA. - 2015
OCAC Gallery Art Showcase - Oxford, CT. - 2015
Paris in Plantsville 5th Annual Juried Exhibition - Plantsville, CT. Juror's Award - 2015
MAC650 Gallery - 2D Winter Juried Exhibit - Middletown, CT. - 2014
Paris in Plantsville, Life and Death” Visual Interpretation of the Human Experience, Plantsville, CT. - 2014
Saatchi Art - “New this Week" Nov. - 2014
Short list - Moxy Milan Blank Canvas competition sponsored by Talent House - Milan, Italy - 2014
Castle Fitzjohns 12×12 – New York, New York - 20142
MAC650 Gallery, Juried exhibit - Middletown, CT. - 2014
Oxford Arts and Cultural Center Juried exhibit – Oxford, CT. Best in Show - 2014
Paris In Plantsville Juried exhibit – Plantsville, CT. – Honorable Mention - 2014
David Hunt Gallery - Falls Village, CT. - 2013
Studio Visit Magazine - Summer 2016 edition
Niji - Featured artist of the week - 2016 Art Blog - Featured artist of the week - 2016
ProteusMag online art blog, “Artist of the Day” 2015
Solo exhibitions:
The Art Gallery at Shutter Speed - Middlebury, CT. July 2016
Oxford Art's and Cultural Center - Oxford, CT.
Cachion Gallery/Southbury Public Library - Southbury, CT. - 2016
Gallery 13 - Danbury, CT. - 1994
Three Person Shows:
Laurie Klein Gallery, Brookfield, CT. - 1994

Laurie Klein Gallery, Brookfield, CT. - 1993

Saturday, July 22, 2017

"REAL.W3ird." Artist Spotlight - Jacquelyn Etling

Join us for the opening of "REAL. W3ird." on August 12 at Southington Community Cultural Arts!  - More Info HERE
"Window Silhouette"  
  Jacquelyn Etling 

Jacquelyn Etling is an award winning photographer and art historian. She has traveled extensively in both Europe and the United States, photographing the natural and man -made worlds. She works primarily in the infrared photographic medium. This process picks up the infrared end of the light spectrum that plants give off, which is unseen by the human eye. Jacquelyn hopes that through using this process, that her photographs uncover the beauty and magic of the world , just beyond the visual spectrum.            
Jacquelyn is a member of the Pleiades Gallery in NY, NY. She currently is the volunteer coordinator of the Fire House Gallery a subsidiary of the Milford Arts Council in Ct. She is also a member of numerous arts organizations including the Ct Women Artists and the Cambridge Art Association in MA. Her work has been seen in a number of gallery and museum exhibitions around America. Some of the venues include the Salmagundi Club, NY, Wade Wilson Gallery, Houston TX, The Queens Museum, NY, the Mystic Art Museum, Ct , the Slater Art Museum, Norwich Ct, and the New Britain Museum Of American Art. 

Thursday, July 20, 2017

"REAL. W3ird." Artist Spotlight - Craig Frederick

Join us for the opening of "REAL. W3ird." on August 12 at Southington Community Cultural Arts!  - More Info HERE
"Wand 1 and 2"
Craig Frederick

­Craig Matthew Frederick, Sculptor

Craig has been studying, making and teaching sculpture since 1981.  Born and raised in New Britain, Connecticut, Craig was influenced by the New England countryside changing with the seasons and filled with rolling hills, valleys cut by rivers and streams, outcroppings of colored stone, and towering deciduous and conifer trees.  In contrast, his small urban town was a typical rust belt community suffering from years of boom and bust.  A factory town in its glory days, it found itself home to people of many different cultures who brought their skilled labor to the industries.  After the factories left, the town and its people fell into a depression the effects of which impacted Craig’s life, views and work.  His concerns and philosophy are global, and he believes art is for all people.  His sculptures are informed by these influences and by poetry, existential thought, psychiatry, mythology, perception, physics and the human figure.  In a review of Craig’s sculpture, “Sparrow,” Steve Starger of The Art Guide writes in the January 2007 issue of the Northwest edition, “The piece is simultaneously complex and simple, strong and vulnerable, a visual haiku that releases the poetry immanent in natural objects.”

Craig holds a B.A. from Skidmore College where he studied with sculptor, John Cunningham and an M.F.A. from The University of Pennsylvania where he studied with sculptors, Robert Engman and Maurice Lowe.  Craig’s works are in private, corporate, and public collections in numerous states and countries.  His pieces range in size from maquettes to monumental structures, and have been exhibited in fine galleries in Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Texas and New York.  Along the way, Craig has worked in three arts foundries where he continued to hone his skills in methods of casting and metal hammering and fabrication.

In addition to his own artwork, Craig has been teaching art since the mid 1980’s in various educational institutions across the USA including The University of Pennsylvania (Figure Sculpture), Galveston College (Metalsmithing/Jewelry) and Central CT State University where he has been teaching art since 2004.  Courses taught by Craig at CCSU include Three-Dimensional Design, Sculpture, Digital Photography, Drawing and Video/New Media Arts.  Craig has also held Sculpture classes and lectures for groups and individuals in his private studio and gallery periodically since 1994.

Craig considers the revitalization of New Britain, Ct and the development of a vibrant arts community in his hometown as an essential part of his Life Work devoting significant time of volunteer and design consultation work for over 20 years. Craig is one of the original four founders of The Greater New Britain Arts Alliance, served as the GNBAA’s first elected President, and championed the development, construction and mission of The New Britain Artists Cooperative. Lastly, during this same time of his life, Craig has served as producer, juror and/or curator for many and various art shows and institutions in Ct and NY.

Monday, July 17, 2017

"REAL. W3ird." Artist Spotlight - Cathy Michanczyk

Join us for the opening of "REAL. W3ird." on August 12 at Southington Community Cultural Arts!  - More Info HERE
 "On the Bridge at Panthorn"
Cathy Michanczyk

Cathy Michanczyk, a native of Southington, has studied oil painting with local artists--the late Bruce Raven from Gallery 53 in Meriden and Sean Michanczyk, former owner of Paris in Plantsville.  She has also taken graphic design and illustration at Tunxis Community College where she primarily did renderings in pencil and pen/ink.  Cathy’s landscapes and seascapes are rendered in acrylics and oils and usually reference places visited within the New England area.  She tries to capture those “at a glance” moments through the camera lens and then uses them to create her own interpretation onto canvas.

Cathy’s interest in art dates back to early childhood.  She was always active with drawing, designing, sewing, crafting, and painting.  Some noteworthy   accomplishments include
illustrations for a school nurse emergency manual for the Department of Pediatrics at UCONN, drawings for a poetry book written by her brother Michael, and a coloring book for her sister’s dance studio.

For more than 30 years, Cathy’s paintings have been displayed in various town libraries, hospitals, nursing care facilities, banks, restaurants, gift stores, and art galleries.  Currently, she volunteers at the SoCCA Gift Store where she sells handmade items. 

"Artist of the Month” Exhibits held at:

·         Farmington Library “The Great Outdoors” – July-August, 2016
·         The Spear Gallery at The Stanley-Whitman Museum in May, 2016 and September, 2012
·         Southington Public Library in May, 2014
·         Paris In Plantsville in July, 2014
·         SACA at The Orchards in July, 2012
"Spring on the Trails"

Thursday, July 13, 2017

"REAL. W3ird" Artist Spotlight - Eric Stegmaier

Join us August 12 for the opening of "REAL. W3ird" at Southington Community Cultural Arts!
More Info HERE
 "Achaean Fleet"
Eric Stegmaier
"In Stark Contrast - For Ajay"

Eric Stegmaier was born in 1980 in New Britain, CT. Upon graduating with a BFA in illustration from the Hartford Art School in 2002, Eric worked as an archaeological illustrator for several excavations in the Middle East. His academic interests in religion led him to pursue a master's degree in religious studies from Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, CT in 2007 while continuing his archaeological endeavors. His work has been published in several books and articles, and his working relationships include the Yale University Art Gallery, Yale’s Department of Egyptology, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the University of Hartford, and the University of Tennessee.

Eric’s paintings are inspired by his love of history, literature, and nature. In addition to his career as the Senior Conservation Assistant at the Yale Center for British Art, Eric is currently writing and illustrating a children’s book and is a former member of the Salmagundi Club NYC. 

Monday, July 10, 2017

"REAL. W3ird." Artist Spotlight - Sean Michanczyk

Join us for the opening of "REAL. W3ird." August 12th at Southington Community Cultural Arts!  More Info HERE
"Home Is Where You Make It"
Sean Michanczyk

Sean Michanczyk Bio
           Sean Michanczyk is a 2008 graduate of the Hartford Art School (BFA illustration ). His passion for art began to develop with his first memories as a child, and was always supported by his family and close friends. His work has evolved into a harmony of emotions and merging styles, paying homage to old masters and contemporary idols while keeping a trompe l'oeil edge. His areas of tightly rendered paintings and keen sense of balance create harmonious story telling through symbolism and self reflection. "What it is, isn't always what it is".
Life, Death, and the unknown of whats after all of this is what drives him as an artist. The relationships along the way that have left a lasting impression had always been with people who can offer the other way of looking at the glass half full. Seeing the beauty in death, finding new life for an object that has already had it's time to shine....the hope in the end to realize what you thought may be gone forever, is really just waiting for next time...this is his search as an artist.
Sean was the creator and founder of Paris in Plantsville Gallery & Studio in Plantsville,CT from January 2010 to January 2016 curating over 50 exhibitions and another 50+ events. He has juried and curated numerous shows throughout Connecticut at many different spaces.  He and his wife Jacqueline, Great Dane and dachshund reside in Southington, CT at his now private studio. Sean is not only working in the fine art industry but also currently head designer for his family Hearth and Fireplace company, where he assists clients, manufacturers and architects across the country with concept designs and product design and development.
Sean Michanczyk Artist Statement
As an artist, I paint as my therapy, for myself only. Yet, my work subconsciously follows patterns of exploring the relationship between emotional memories and the relationships that have been built and lost throughout my years thus far.
With influences as diverse as Caravaggio, Gustav Klimt, John Haberle, Ajay Brainard and Salvador Dali new combinations are created from both traditional and modern structures.
My whole life I've been fascinated by the essential unreality of relationships. What starts out as triumph soon becomes manipulated into a manifesto of futility, leaving only a sense of dread and the possibility of a new reality, while still having a sense of hope and positive feelings for my future.
As wavering phenomena become transformed through diligent and critical practice, the viewer is left with a glimpse of the limits of our future.

Painting pictured above:

"Home Is Where You Make"

Oil on Panel

24" x 36"

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