Father and Son

A few Bryan Memorial Gallery staff members ventured southeast to Gloucester, MA a few weeks ago for the opening reception of A Father and Son’s Journey in Paint, featuring the works of Tom Nicholas, NA and his son, T.M. Nicholas.  As a staff, some among us are usually on duty at the gallery, so rarely if ever do we make it together to opening receptions.  However for this occasion, the stars aligned and 3 of us were able to attend, along with one of our artists, Andrew Orr, and literally 100’s of others.

TM Nicholas Late Autumn Rockport Harbor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The exhibition at the Cape Ann Museum in Gloucester brings together over 100 paintings by father and son, a veritable conversation in paint between the generations.  In brief, T.M. studied with his father as well as with others, and such a dual exhibition had been a career goal since he was a teenager.  In fact, the timing of this exhibit (Tom is in his 80’s’ T.M. is in his 50’s) is perfect as the presence of both painters and Gloria Nicholas, Mrs. Tom Nicholas, informed the undertaking.

Bryan Gallery has shown the works of Tom Nicholas almost since the beginning of the gallery (35 years ago), and of T. M. Nicholas just as soon as he was ready to participate.  As painters in the great Cape Ann tradition, they raise a bar and set a standard that grows and develops continuously, with fluidity and graciousness that reflects their personal, respective integrity.

Tom Nicholas Rockport HarborBoth are extraordinarily generous artists: generous with their time, with their ideas and thoughts, with the expansiveness of their vision and with a kind of risk taking that always surprises.  Just when you think you’ve seen the best from either one, there’s another thought in paint, another location, another idea that surprises and solidifies one’s estimation, another notch above the last.

While Gloria Nicholas is herself not a painter, one understands completely the contribution of her superb organizational skills, in addition to the same from Laurel Nicholas, mother of the 4 Nicholas granddaughters.  Blood can be thicker than paint.

Tom Nicholas and Mickey(Mickey Myers with Tom Nicholas)

Wishing we lived closer, it might be possible to attend one of the three lectures that accompany this exhibition: February 15: T.M. Nicholas and Stapleton Kearns; March 14: Judith Curtis and April 4, T.M. Nicholas.  In addition, an informative catalogue sets the tone for the scholarship about both artists which will undoubtedly be woven into the legend and lore of the arts on Cape Ann.

Tom Nicholas and T.M. Nicholas: A Father and Son’s Journey in Paint

Cape Ann Museum, 27 Pleasant Street, Gloucester, MA 01930 through April 12, 2020, open daily except Mondays.  978-283-0455. www.capeannmuseum.org

The current issue of American Art Review includes an article by Judith Curtis about this exhibition

The End of an Era

By Mickey Myers

Bryan Memorial Gallery sent the following press release to its press contacts this week.

Bryan Memorial Gallery
Jeffersonville, VT
Susan Lassiter’s Presidency concludes after 8 Years;
Julie Brown succeeds her.

Susan Lassiter of Underhill, a Vice President of Union Bank and Manager of its Jeffersonville branch, stepped down as President of the Bryan Memorial Gallery Board at the Gallery Annual Meeting after a tenure of eight years.  Joining the board originally in 2008, Lassiter assumed the role of President unexpectedly in 2011 on an “interim” basis, but was subsequently re-elected annually for the next seven one-year terms.

Susan LassiterShe is succeeded by Julie Brown of Jeffersonville, whose term became effective immediately.  Brown was originally elected to the Bryan Gallery Board in 2018, and served as co-chair of the Gallery’s On Line Auction Committee.

Lassiter’s involvement with The Bryan began through her association with the Helen Day Art Center in Stowe, where she was Branch manager of the Stowe branch of Union Bank.  While there, she volunteered on the Helen Day’s Gala Committee, working alongside Mickey Myers, then HDAC Executive Director.  Shortly after Lassiter moved to the Jeffersonville branch of Union Bank, Myers became Director of Bryan Memorial Gallery in Jeffersonville, and their association resumed.

Susan LassiterLassiter remembers saying to Myers, “. . . . but I don’t know anything about art,” to which Mickey replied, “You don’t have to know anything about art.”  Myers reflects that Lassiter’s enthusiasm for the Gallery and her involvement with the community through Cambridge Rotary and the Cambridge Arts Council brought a vitality to the Gallery that remains tangible to this day.   “Wherever Susan goes, she talks about the Gallery,” Myers commented, “She’s a one person public relations marvel, and the Gallery has benefited from her leadership every day.”

Myers remarked that Lassiter’s willingness to support new programs and outreach to the community has enhanced the Gallery’s profile as a leading center for landscape art, now in its 35th year.

Lassiter will remain on the board in the capacity of Immediate Past President and Chair of the Special Events Committee.  Myers concluded “Fortunately Susan is not going far and Julie Brown is the perfect successor.  So the Gallery is doubly blessed as we move into the future.”

Postscript:  That’s the conclusion of the press release, but it is not the conclusion of the enormous impact Susan Lassiter has had on the Gallery and the community. Though we rarely articulated it because we didn’t have to, it has been a mutual pleasure to partner with Susan, President and Executive Director, for all these many years.  It was such an easy partnership that the work and the ideas just flowed from one to another, back and forth, all the time.

I don’t think I ever heard Susan say, “No” to a new idea, and her articulation of her concerns was always supportive and full of integrity.  That kind of support is an Executive Director’s dream and a great legacy for the arts in Vermont, which have thrived under Susan’s leadership in our corner of Lamoille County and beyond.

Charles Movalli Award for Excellence in Painting

By Mickey Myers

Bryan Memorial Gallery announces the Charles Movalli Award for Excellence in Painting to be presented at the 2018 Land and Light Awards on September 9, 2018.

Artist Dale Ratcliffe Movalli and Timothy Neill are pictured with a maquette for the Charles Movalli Medal for Excellence in Painting
Artist Dale Ratcliffe Movalli and Timothy Neill are pictured with a maquette for the Charles Movalli Medal for Excellence in Painting

The Award, a gold and copper relief medal of Movalli, designed by sculptor Daniel Altshuler of Gloucester, MA, is made possible by the Estate of Charles Movalli, with arrangements made by Dale Ratcliffe Movalli, his widow also of Gloucester, MA.  The Award will be presented annually over the next eight years.

Charles Movalli (1945 – 2016) was a friend of Bryan Memorial Gallery, dating back even before the gallery was in existence as he came here to paint in Jeffersonville, and maintained a friendship with Alden Bryan, whom he knew originally from Gloucester, MA.  Movalli and Ratcliffe juried an earlier Land and Light exhibition (2008), and he was a participating artist in several subsequent Land and Light exhibits, winning the Second Place award in 2011.

Known and esteemed both as a painter and a writer, Movalli grew up in the home of artists and was inclined to teaching about art from his youngest years.  Though earning his PhD in English from University of Connecticut, Movalli’s texts were most frequently about art.  In the course of his career, he edited nine texts on artists, and American Artist magazine published 80 of his articles.  He painted at least 5,000 paintings in his lifetime, and he was best known for his landscapes and marine paintings.  

H1066-L03543020

What his friends and fellow artists recall about him was his infectious enthusiasm for all the fine arts, especially architecture and opera, and his generosity in sharing what he had learned with others, through his writings, workshops, lectures and casual conversations.  Popularly called The Ambassador of Cape Ann, he maintained a vivid interest in the history of the Rocky Neck Art Colony in Massachusetts throughout his lifetime.

The Charles Movalli Medal for Excellence in the Arts has been presented at the North Shore Arts Association and the Rockport Art Association, both in 2017.  It will be presented in at the Bryan Memorial Gallery in Jeffersonville at the Gallery’s Annual Awards ceremony on Sunday, September 9, 2018.  

 

Georgia O’Keeffe: Art Image Style

A Bus Trip to The Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts
by Mickey Myers

George in capeOn behalf of the Gallery, we’ve got to admit, we’re smitten.  Last fall’s trip to the Chagall exhibit in Montreal proved the grass can be greener, if only for a day.  Travel to art destinations has been a particular proclivity of art institutions for decades, as it combines the expertise of curators who often serve as trip hosts, with specialized viewing arrangements, often organized by those curators.  The romance of an archeological dig, a cruise, a private collection can make a vacation not just any vacation.

When we realized a once in a lifetime exhibit of Chagall’s work was mounted just 2 hours to our north in Montreal, we plunged in, and never regretted it.  We were still talking about the joys of what we saw, and looking for the next place to go. . . when we found Georgia.

41dBhgNHV8L._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_Georgia O’Keeffe: Art, Image and Style, organized by the Brooklyn Museum, was
opening in Brooklyn, and traveling this winter to the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, MA.  It’s a little farther away than Montreal, but it’s Georgia, who lives in our hearts, as the trailblazer for women artists in the 20th century.  Besides, this exhibit was offering a side of Georgia we did not know, as a stylist, seamstress and fashion icon.

So we hereby offer Bryan Memorial Gallery’s second foray into travel.  It’s still only a day trip, and we have yet to spend the night anywhere.  But if the excitement about going as a group of art aficionados gains strength from this experience, we’ve got a few ideas up our collective sleeves for the next trip.

Bryan Memorial Gallery in cooperation with Goodspeed and Bach Travel (of Burlington and NYC) presents Georgia O’Keeffe Art, Image, Style, a day trip to the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem Massachusetts for a traveling exhibit of art, photographs and fashion by and about the legendary painter, Georgia O’Keeffe (1887 – 1986.)

O'Keeffe Mountains 2Leaving from four locations in Vermont (Burlington, Jeffersonville, Montpelier and White River Junction) on Tuesday, March 27, the bus will depart in the morning, with Bryan Gallery Executive Director Mickey Myers providing an orientation to O’Keeffe’s artwork on route.  Upon arrival in Salem, Massachusetts, lunch will be served at the iconic Hawthorne Hotel, after which travelers will walk over to the Peabody Essex Museum.

Private guides will lead the participants through the exhibition, the first exhibition to explore the art, image and personal style of one of America’s most iconic artists.  O’Keeffe’s understated and carefully designed garments, many never before exhibited, are presented alongside photographs of her, and paintings by her, illuminating O’Keeffe’s unified modernist aesthetic and distinctive self-styling.

georgia-okeeffeFor more than 70 years, O’Keeffe shaped her public persona, defied labels and carved out a truly progressive, independent life in order to create her art. Her aesthetic legacy — compact masses, organic silhouettes, minimal ornamentation, and restrained color palettes — continues to capture the popular imagination and inspire leading designers and tastemakers of our day.  Organized by the Brooklyn Museum, this multi-disciplinary exhibition is the first to focus on the relationship between O’Keeffe’s art and her personal style, including how she was captured on film by the outstanding photographers of her day (including Ansel Adams and O’Keeffe’s husband, Alfred Stiglitz.)

There will be time to explore the exhibition after the tour, and to visit other parts of the museum, including the Peabody Essex Museum’s famed Chinese House: Yin Yu Tang.  The return trip to Vermont will have participants home in the evening.

Georgia 3Goodspeed and Bach Trip Director Deb Flanders will manage the trip which includes entrance to the Peabody Essex Museum, lunch at historic Hawthorne Hotel: appetizer, entrée, dessert and coffee; private guided tour of the exhibition; ticket entrance to the entire museum; tour host and tour manager, luxury motor coach transportation with departures from Burlington and Jeffersonville; gratuity for bus driver and trip manager.

For those interested in giving this trip as a gift, Bryan Memorial Gallery has specifically designed gift certificates available.

To register, go on line to www.bryangallery.org/events.

Courthouse Update / August 21, 2017 / The Day of the Eclipse

Jeanette Fournier "Song of Spring"
Jeanette Fournier “Song of Spring”

On this auspicious date, Bryan Memorial Gallery’s curators installed the Second Segment of Vermont Landscapes at the Lamoille County Courthouse in Hyde Park. It had been seven months since the prior installation, which was well received to the point that the Courthouse invited Bryan Memorial Gallery to refresh and re-install the paintings, with some more appropriate for the fall and winter months ahead.

So on a day when just about everyone was giddy about the Eclipse of the Moon, Gallery Manager Tom Waters filled his truck with 37 paintings by 18 artists and returned to the now familiar but still hallowed halls of the Courthouse. Among the artists were three watercolorists new to this show: Lisa Forster Beach of Stowe, Kathrena Ravenhorst-Adams of

Kathrena Ravenhost-Adams "Winter on the Farm"
Kathrena Ravenhost-Adams “Winter on the Farm”

Northfield and Jeanette Fournier of Littleton, New Hampshire. Most of the artists previously in the exhibit had returned with new paintings.   Some didn’t have new work to offer, which presented the curators with their first challenge – to make that which was not new look new.

Here is where the flexibility and majesty of the Lamoille County Courthouse comes into play. The building sings. It is lyrical to the point that a painting can be moved and look as good in the second space as it did in the first. It can even look new all over again. Different lighting or wall color can contribute to the viewer’s observation of something they hadn’t seen in the painting the first time.

Lisa Forster Beach "Golden Vermont"
Lisa Forster Beach “Golden Vermont”

With the last installation, the curators had noted that paintings with animals in them had a particular fascination for some of the Courthouse guests, and so they made sure there were several more this time, including two bright bird paintings by Jeanette Fournier. Many of the artists offered paintings of fall and winter scenes: Marilyn James’ “October,” Lisa Beach’s “Golden Vermont,” and John Clarke Olson’s “Winter Barns,” among them.

For us at Bryan Gallery, returning to the Courthouse felt like familiar experience, like an extension of what we normally do, adding a special dimension to the Day of the Eclipse.   Many people will remember this day for a long time, but especially for us at Bryan Memorial Gallery, we will remember the particular satisfaction of returning to the Courthouse to share artwork and artists with a wider community.

More photos and the original post of the Courthouse Gallery can be found here.

Dianne Panarelli Miller and Her Students

by Mickey Myers

Bryan Memorial Gallery presents Dianne Panarelli Miller and Her Students in its Middle Room this summer. 25 paintings by Miller and paintings by 9 of her students are included in the exhibit.

DianneDianne Panarelli Miller, a native of Massachusetts, has been painting since studying at the late commercial art school, Vesper George, in Boston.  One of the last graduates of the school (1983), Miller went on to attend the Ives Gammel Atelier formed by some of the former Vesper George faculty, specifically Robert Douglas Hunter and Robert Cormier.  Her five year atelier education led her to parlay the classic atelier training of the “Boston School,” including a mastery of oil painting technique, with her own personal style, expressed through the harmony of color and design.  When her formal education concluded, Dianne continued.

Painting tirelessly for 35 more years, neither the birth of her daughter nor her employment as a bartender for 17 years distracted her from painting “en plein air,” in natural light, every day.  Her tenacious approach has earned her the distinction as “a Copley Master” at Boston’s legendary Copley Society, in addition to numerous awards.

From her mentors, Miller developed a love of teaching and mentoring herself.  In addition to teaching classes through the South Shore Art Center in Cohasset, MA, Miller offers private painting instruction and provides opportunities for painting trips both in New England and farther afield, including Florida and Europe.  Recently she has returned from painting in Spain with a group of her private students.  MillerSundown

Miller originally came to Bryan Gallery’s attention through the New England Plein Air Painters.  She joined us in 2016 as one of the students in the exhibition ROBERT DOUGLAS HUNTER AND HIS STUDENTS.  Bryan Gallery has been exploring the relationship among students and teachers, particularly when the teacher’s reputation as an artist extends far beyond the classroom.  In getting to know Miller, it became clear that her distinct style of mentoring, including almost daily trips to paint outdoors, regardless of weather, up and down the East Coast, was to be explored.

MillerUpperPleasantValley

In addition to her work in plein air, Miller teaches and is commissioned forportrait work, and also for wedding in situ paintings.  As she has said of herself, “Never one to take the easy way out,” Miller’s boundless energy propels her into a wide spectrum of locations, always working with and encouraging others.  She has said of herself that she can hear the voice of her mentor Robert Douglas Hunter in everything she teaches, as she passes on the lessons that re-shaped her life and her art.

MillerOuttoPastureCurator’s Note:  Dianne Panarelli Miller has painted in many locations in preparation for this exhibit, including familiar situations in Lamoille County, Vermont, where she visited with her students a few months prior to the exhibition.  Subsequently she has returned twice for more plein air sessions.  She is a friendly figure outdoors  in front of an easel, known to carry on a banter with passers-by without taking her eyes off the canvas.  She’s also known to paint a passer-by into a painting, which she reports doing in particular at the beach.  Beach-goers will pass her and on their return, she’ll say, “By the way, you made it into my painting.”  Likewise at weddings, she not only involves the guests by depicting them on her canvas, but also she asks them to make a few strokes of color on the painting, under her direction, so it becomes a genuine keepsake for the new family.

Students of Dianne Panarelli Miller in the exhibit:
Lauren Bass
Bob Beaulieu
Maureen Brookfield
Cheryl Curran
Rita Delvechio
Margaret Finnegan
Ellen Little
Dottie Pentheny
Kate Sotolova