During my travels, I feel drawn to flowers for their vibrant colors, tones and fantastic textures. Going through my photos I realized I took more pictures of flowers than people. Only my museum shots outnumbered them. I have even stopped the car so I could go out and take pictures of some vivid colors that caught my eye along the roadside.
I wanted to tell a story about artists and how we worked and thought and planned before we picked up a brush. My paintings start with one of my photos and devolve into a small painting and then into an abstraction of that painting. They are happy paintings that come out of a difficult time in my life and also in our country's life. I believe that you have to look at the brighter side of things and art will take you there
My background in art is strange. I was told as a third-grader that I could not draw and I took music lessons and I never had an art class. After taking a drawing-one class in a local college at the ripe old age of 52 and then transferring to U Conn where I graduated with a BFA Summa Cum Laude at age 58 and then on to my MFA at Vermont College at 60 years. After school, I reached out to Norwich Arts Gallery and have been a member since then.
Life on Broadway
The Norwich Arts Center was formed originally as the Norwich Arts Council in 1987 by a group of local artists and art-lovers who were inspired by the region’s cultural possibilities. Since its inception, the dedicated board members, artists, and volunteers of NAC have worked to provide affordable arts programming that is both a reflection of the area’s rich diversity and a platform for deeper arts appreciation.
To accomplish these feats, NAC sought a base of operations. That was found in one of Norwich’s historic architectural gems on 60-64 Broadway, the former St. Mary’s Total Abstinence and Benevolence Building, originally constructed in 1892. NAC leased and renovated the ground floor of 60 Broadway and converted the space into the NAC Gallery, which has had on exhibit not only the work of NAC’s co-op artists but other regional artists as well. The building was bought outright in 1995 and more renovations followed, including that of the gorgeous, intimate space of the Donald L. Oat Theater on the third floor. The theater has been a versatile venue for stage productions, live music performances, dance events, workshops, receptions, children’s classes…name a function, and our theater has probably served it, or will soon. The most recent addition to NAC is the former Kokopelli Coffeehouse space on 64 Broadway, now used as additional gallery space rented out to local artists, NAC Gallery II. Though our programming is not limited to our building, our home on Broadway has served as a meeting place for creative minds, exceptional talent, and passionate defenders of the arts.
NAC’s footprint in the Chelsea Arts District continues to play a key role in the revitalization of downtown Norwich. A vital part of the downtown First Friday scene, with a monthly gallery opening reception and a season of live concerts reflecting diverse music genres, NAC proves to be a boon to Norwich as one of the city’s unique cultural attractions.
NAC Board of Directors
Pat LaPierre, Co-President
Faye Ringel, Co-President
Nancy A. Thomas, Treasurer
Susan Masse, Secretary
Ronald J. Bates
Carol Dunn, NAC Artists' Co-op President
Gabe Lipman, NAC Artists' Co-op President
James R. Marshall III
Roberta J. Vincent
Thomas E. Keaney