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Sculpted Shapes in Steel, Stone, Even Straw

The Art Scene
leong@lakevillejournal.com

From a distance, it seems to be a family dressed for Sunday visiting: Grandma sits on a bench wearing a sunhat, red cardigan, white sneakers; a man has one foot on the bench as he ties his shoe, a straw dog – literally – beside him; and an obviously younger woman — she’s dressed in more youthful clothes — holds a little girl’s hand while a young boy runs toward the old woman. But this family in the middle of a lawn at Noble Horizons is made of sticks and string and hay, Michael Melle’s contribution to the expansive outdoor invitational sculpture show on the Noble campus.

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Tattooing The Joys And Sorrows Of Life

The Art Scene
compass@lakevillejournal.com

I fell in love with Bill Wykoff when I was 8. He smoked Lucky Strikes, taught me to play gin rummy and kept a German Luger automatic pistol he’d brought home from the war in a drawer of his roll-top desk. Also, he had a tattoo, a massive one on his chest and shoulder with an eagle and snakes and a great rippling flag.
Then my mother dropped him, and I never saw him again.
But the memory lingers on. That was one terrific tattoo.

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Collaborations With Nature

The Art Scene
compass@lakevillejournal.com

A shaggy Sicilian donkey protects Randy Orzano’s sheep from coyotes and other predators that roam open country at the edges of Sharon, CT. That donkey knows its job, largely by intuition. Anything outside the fence is a danger, so when a lamb wandered beyond the pale, the donkey killed it.
Animals know their job here, untuitively. The donkey protects the sheep that crop the grassy fields, the bees keep their hives, make honey and maybe even collaborate with Orzano — a civil engineer by training; an artist, by desire.

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For the Last Time

The Art Scene
leong@lakevillejournal.com

Robert Cronin’s recent abstract art was seen in Washington Depot’s Gunn Memorial Library last fall and in Falls Village’s Hunt Memorial Library this spring. Now, however, he is showing older, figurative works in a large show at the Hotchkiss Sharon Library. And he calls it “The Last Figure Picture Show.”
For good reason.

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A Leg Up for Developing Artists

compass@lakevillejournal.com

Jane Strong and John Brett are not artists. “Just appreciators. We collect things,” Brett says during an interview in Lakeville’s former White Gallery.
“I don’t have a lot of experience with art,” Brett, a retired investment banker says, “but I love art. It’s the heart of a healthy community.”
So Strong, with a background in cultural anthropology and marketing, and Brett will be opening The Gallery Arts Guild on Main Street, and Tino Galluzzo will be moving his gallery into a building at the back of the parking lot there.

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Black and White And Gritty

The Art Scene
leong@lakevillejournal.com

Many cinema critics and fans think the 1930s and ’40s were the golden age of film. Certainly artist Ann Chernow is fascinated, even obsessed, with the female characters in those often gritty and drama-drenched movies. They represented a new independent woman — though certainly not the liberated woman of today — who thought for herself, could be tough, showed real emotion. Think of Joan Crawford, Bette Davis, Barbara Stanwyck.

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Getting a Closer Look at the Artist

The Art Scene
compass@lakevillejournal.com

It’s been a good year for John Atchley, with exhibits, prizes and sales of his moody, and abstract photographs.
Atchley is one of the 34 artists opening their studios to the public June 23 and 24 for the Northwest Connecticut Arts Council’s annual studio tour.
Atchley is a trifle uneasy about it, though. “I’m not exactly fond of being in the public eye.”
But in recent years he has edged his way into the art scene with his original and beautiful work.

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Flower Love In Massachusetts

Red Zinnia, by photographer and filmmaker Bruce Checefsky, is among the pieces in Botanophilia, an exhibit at Sohn Fine Art Gallery in Stockbridge, MA. The entire exhibit is spread to two other spots: the Berkshire Botanical Garden and Naumkeag. A reception at all three sites is scheduled for June 9, from 2 to 7 p.m. For information, call 413-298-1025 or go to info@sohnfineart.com

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A Look at Two Artists Opening Their Doors For the Studio Tour

The Artists Scene
compass@lakevillejournal.com

From age 5, Marjory Reid painted. “That’s all I wanted to do. All I ever did was paint, paint, paint.”
Now it’s seven decades later — after Oberlin, Rhode Island School of Design, a residency in Taos (meeting Agnes Martin there) and 36 years of teaching art and art history — and this buoyant woman wearing yellow-framed spectacles, big silver hoop earrings and blue denim, shows me around her studio on Bunker Hill in Salisbury. Her canvases are filled with adventurous, willful bolts of color.
Most of the work I see here is abstract, and it’s piercingly beautiful.

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Enjoyable Show in a Lovely Spot

The Art Scene: Photography in New Marlborough
leong@lakevillejournal.com

The elephant looks at you, eye to eye. Actually we see only one eye and a bit of wrinkled trunk and face in photographer John Lipkowitz’s extreme close-up of the pachyderm, one image in a suite of four jungle animal shots in a surprising and surprisingly good exhibition now at the Meeting House Gallery in New Marlborough, MA.

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