Friday, February 29, 2008

Firescreens at the Tavern

I recently painted two fireplace screens at JMICHAELS TAVERN with a red onion tile effect to simulate a fireplace that was once there. There actually were two removed many years ago to make a stairway that leads up from the kitchen to four dining rooms on the second floor. When visiting during renovations several months ago, I saw that they were painted just solid black and I suggested this to compliment the wonderul panel wood work. The red onion is a symbol of the town's heritage that was so famous years ago.

J MICHAELS TAVERN at 222 Main Street and the First Church of Christ built in 1761 and 1764.
There are wagon rides similar to what is shown at special times throughout the year.

The Webb, Deane, Stevens museum houses across the street from the J MICHAELS TAVERN in the center of the oldest town in Connecticut, Old Wethersfield established in 1639.

I also exhibit other folk art paintings at the tavern that are available for purchase. It's a special experience to sit near the screens and let your imagination wonder through the times while having a wonderful dining experience. Visit the museum across the street where George Washington had stayed in the Webb house in 1781 planning the battle of Yorktown.

Just a little further up the street visit Antiques on Main where I have various other original works of Old Wethersfield or call me to visit the studio just across the river in Glastonbury.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Making one of my Puzzles

On cozy winter evenings at the end of a working day, my wife Janice likes at times to relax putting a puzzle together. I first wondered how that could be "relaxing" and thought it would be frustrating instead and impossible to fit a thousand pieces together. Well, after sitting down with her a couple of times I began to look forward to joining in and getting a little brian "excercise". It was fun to be together working on sorting the colors and shapes to fit and feeling the satisfaction of accomplishing something. It's a nice way not only to exercise the mind, but it was relaxing working on it a little at a time.

I hated to take apart the few puzzles that we did and instead just laid them down upstairs in my studio. However with this puzzle, "Marblehead Fish Company," I noticed that my signature was missing. So I have made this one very special by signing the box and the completed puzzle on the bottom right , noting that Janice and I finished it in February '08. This will be offered for sale on ebay someday but until then you're invited to come by my studio to see it.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

"Better Connecticut"

On Monday, February 4th I was at the J MICHAELS TAVERN in Old Wethersfield where I soon will be installing two large firescreen panels with paintings of the tavern and the Webb, Deane Stevens museum across the street. Scot Haney of WSFB channel 3 in Hartford, was filming a story of the recently opened restaurant for the program "Better Connecticut" and he met me therefor the first time. It was from this meeting that he came to my studio & gallery where there was also plenty to see for a story. The segment aired two times on Friday the 8th and once on Saturday morning the 9th. This brought in interested vistors to the gallery and a special story of one of my earlier paintings that surprised me. Everyone called ahead of time to let me know of their arrival and I invite also to visit when the time is right.

Flying Painting

I have done many paintings for over 42 years and I sometiimes wonder where they go after being puchased. On Sunday afternoon I was told a story about one of my paintings that I never heard before.

Early Saturday morning was the third airing of the segment "Better Connecticut" with my interview with the host Scot Haney that was seen by Jack A. from Westbrook. It seems Jack was trying to find more about me for three years and when he heard my name it caught his attention right away. I got a call later Saturday regarding a very interesting story of how he aquired one of my early 18x24 framed canvas paintings. He first asked me if I were the same person describing a painting he had and sure enough , I was.

He told me about driving down Rte.1 a few years ago driving in back of a car that just pulled out of a flea market. All of a sudden a painting flew off of the cars roof and flew up in the air landing in the highway and he swirved immediately to avoid it. The car behind him though ran over it! As Jack came to a stop he was able to retrieve it. It seems that the painting must have been forgotten on the top of the car from New York as it drove down the road.

The only damage was tire tracks on the back side, and the beautiful gold frame had a distressed edge which was hardly noticible. The painting "Snow Shoes" is in excellent condition and was done I believe in 1985 as I didn't date work many times in the early years. It's interesting for me to see this era of primitive work having less details in my paintings of today. When he mentioned this find to a friend , he wondered if this painting could be his "retirement" and he hung it proudly in his house. That sounded good to me as I look around my gallery at all of my paintings. Jack was quite pleased to finally know more about his flying painting along Rte. 1 in Connecticut. I'd say that is quite a unique way to start a collection!