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Cultural Alliance, Local Vineyard To Collaborate On Accessible Art Projects



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The Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut (CAWC) has partnered with Aquila’s Nest Vineyards to present outdoor art shows inspired by the world of birds. The exhibitions in Sandy Hook will continue the cultural alliance’s Accessible Art Project series.

The partnership was formally announced on March 19 by CAWC board member Andrea Gartner, who was in Sandy Hook for a press conference with Governor Ned Lamont and other local, state, and federal leaders and officials. Gartner was joined by CAWC chair Lew Wallace and fellow board members Vicki Taylor-Bloch and Paul Steinmetz for the announcement.

“We want to equip the creative sectors to build and grow the economy that we live in, while also enriching people’s lives in those places,” she said Friday afternoon. “We work with artists, designers, builders, makers, entrepreneurs, and innovators.

“The Cultural Alliance serves ten surrounding towns, including this slice of heaven, here in Newtown,” she continued. Gartner “truly believes,” she said, “that art enriches us.”

She officially announced the collaborative project, “to present an outdoor art show inspired by the world of birds.”

Artists from parts of Connecticut and New York are invited asked to submit proposals for two exhibits, “Nesting,” which will run from June to September, and “Migration,” running from September to November.

Submissions are open to artists ages 18 and old and up who live in western Connecticut and in the New York counties of Dutchess, Ulster, Putnam, and Westchester. Works must be three-dimensional or an assembly of works, of original design, not smaller than 10 cubic feet, and offered for sale. Materials must be durable for outdoor exhibition and exposure to the elements.

Artists will be responsible for the secure installation and removal of their work, including having the necessary hardware, materials and human resources, if needed. Installation and removal dates will be provided upon acceptance.

Amy Salerno is curating the exhibits.

Salerno is a graduate of the SVA Graduate Art Education program, with 15 years of teaching experience in public K-12 schools in Westchester and Long Island. She has taught in the Bedford school district since 2013, where her passion for community building and mosaic mural arts inspired her to pursue a grant to study mosaic at Orsoni Mosaici in Venice.

In her personal studio, Salerno works in encaustic painting, ceramics, and glass, as well as creating and donating public murals to sites in need of hope, including the Dorothy Day Hospitality House in Danbury.

“As we welcome spring, we consider the nests that we have built and found shelter, protection, and comfort within,” she said via a press release.

“Similarly, we appreciate the hopefulness of migration, as it means to move with the seasons. Artists will interpret these themes both literally and figuratively in their sculptural work, expressing how we coexist within the natural world.”

The deadline to submit entries for both shows is April 30. Cost to enter is $15 for the first entry, and $10 for each additional entry, for non-CAWC members. There is no fee for CAWC members.

Artists will be notified of acceptance by May 7.

To submit, visit http://bit.ly/accessibleart or http://www.cawct.org.

The exhibitions, Gartner said last week, “are expected to be the first of many accessible art projects that take advantage of the beautiful scenery around here.”

Since 2008, the Accessible Art Project has been a successful collaboration of CAWC and various public and private venues in western Connecticut. The initiative offers a series of art exhibits throughout the year.

Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut Board of Directors member Andrea Gartner last week announced a collaborative project between CAWC and Aquila’s Nest Vineyards in Sandy Hook. Among those also at the press conference, held during a very windy afternoon, were Aquila’s Nest co-owner Neviana Zhgaba, on the left, and First Selectman Dan Rosenthal. —Bee Photo, Hicks
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