MOCA WESTPORT: THE WESTPORT IDEA EXHIBITION
19 Newton Turnpike, Westport, CT
"The exhibition will enable audiences to enjoy selections from WestPAC (Westport Public Art Collections) holdings of more than 2,000 artworks at a public venue. Most of these works are housed in public schools and municipal buildings, not always accessible to the public. The exhibition originated as an ‘Idea’ between WAAC and MoCA Westport to bring annual selections of WestPAC’s heralded, but rarely seen, collection of original works of art on view for the community to enjoy, appreciate – even be wowed by,” says Town Curator Kathleen Bennewitz. “It also demonstrates how Westport’s cultural legacy enabled artists, educators, and donors, then and now, to build these important Collections. Like WestPAC, MoCA Westport evolved and thrives from the same energy that is the basis/source of ‘The Westport Idea.’ There is a legacy of creativity and appreciation of art that underpins both of these organizations, as well as other art institutions in Westport,“ Bennewitz added.
Westport’s heritage as an arts community is long-standing. As early as 1904, painters, sculptors, printmakers and illustrators gravitated to Westport, CT from New York City. A Bridgeport reporter noted in 1911, “there seems to be something in the air and scenery of this town which induces artists to settle within its limits.” In 1931, “The Westport Idea” originated with Samuel Duff McCoy, a poet, biographer and newspaperman. Nowhere in the radius of New York, or any large city, was there a year-round community of artists. Forty-three artists and twelve writers joined together to create a collective that planned and exhibited together under McCoy’s leadership.
The Westport Public Art Collections’ origins go back to 1910 but more fully evolved in 1965 through the vision of Westport artist and educator Burt Chernow. His “Idea” was to collect original fine art for students to experience daily. Chernow believed that “the vital and formative years spent by children in public schools are significant in determining their adult attitudes toward art.” This inaugural collection consisted of about one hundred works donated by eighty credentialed area artists. Today, WestPAC has more than 2,000 artworks by global luminaries and esteemed American and regional based artists." (For more information, click here.)
MOCA WESTPORT: COCKTAILS AND CONVERSATION: EKPHRASTIC WRITING WORKSHOP WITH DIANE LOWMAN, WESTPORT POET LAUREATE:
19 Newton Turnpike, Westport, CT
"As supporting programming for The Westport Idea, Diane Lowman, Westport Poet Laureate, will be hosting an ekphrastic writing workshop. In ancient Greece, ekphrasis meant describing anything in vivid detail. It has come to mean writing in response to a work of art. In this workshop, several exhibition pieces will be chosen as prompts for writing. No experience is necessary." (MOCA Westport- Click here for more information and registration.)
WESTPORT LIBRARY: WESTPORTREADS 2022 KEYNOTE WITH V.E. SCHWAB
"V.E. Schwab, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of acclaimed Shades of Magic series and international bestseller Invisible Life of Addie LaRue will share her book and answer questions about her novel, The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue with Kelle Ruden and the Westport community." (Westport Library- Click here for more information.)
WESTPORT LIBRARY: MY MILLIONAIRE (THE CURRENCY OF LOVE): AN ORIGINAL PERFORMANCE AND CONVERSATION
20 Jesup Road, Westport, CT
"Composer Barbara Backlar Reis, in collaboration with writer Nancy Becklean Tobin, presents songs and commentary from her original collaboration “My Millionaire (The Currency of Love),” a musical based on Mark Twain’s short story, “The Million Pound Bank Note.” The show explores the themes of money and power and how people behave toward those who possess them." (Westport Library- Click here for more information and to register.)
WAKEMAN TOWN FARM: HAIKU WORKSHOP
Poet Laureate Diane Lowman will discuss the origins of haiku and participants will then write and share their own beautiful creations. The farm's environs will be used for inspiration. (Click here for more information and tickets.)