Community, artists celebrates Kennedy Center calendar
More than 250 guests had fun supporting the kick off of The Kennedy Center's 2011 "Unique Perspective Calendar" during a recent reception at their People's United Bank Gallery in Bridgeport, 820 Main St. An air of excitement filled the room as guests personally congratulated the artists and asked them to autograph their calendars.
For more than 28 years, this annual calendar has provided new possibilities for people with abilities and disabilities to reach and engage a larger audience. The calendar represents a month-by-month celebration of talent and creativity. The vibrant and expressive works of 13 Connecticut artists with disabilities are featured and illustrate how people with disabilities can be productive, contributing members of their community. Connecticut artists with disabilities who participate in the award-winning art therapy program offered by The Kennedy Center designed the monthly calendar selections.
This year's calendar features three new artists and new artistic mediums. Art created through the use of a wheelchair is featured as well as batik paper collage on the front cover. In addition, this year's inside cover has the first cover painting from the 1983 calendar.
Artists include Fairfield residents Michael Daly, Lisa Ellis and Bonnie Kaehler; Bridgeport residents Marquis Eady, James Graves, Marc Iaizzi, Maritza Rentas and Debra Jean Willis; Stratford residents Alice Dubois, Sheldon Clemente and Carolyn Kordish; Todd Carboni of Milford; Jessica Allan of Southbury; and Carmella Vallelunga of Oxford. For the second year in a row, Kennedy Center artist Michael Donahue of Trumbull has photographed all the artists.
Calendar sponsors included: The People's United Community Foundation; Merit Insurance in Bridgeport; Imperial Graphics in Stratford, Maggie Daly of Fairfield, Deirdre Daly & Alfred Pavlis of Fairfield, Polly and John Tucker of Westport, and Cutting Edge Communications of Shelton.
Calendars cost $10 each and may be purchased by contacting Lois Gerety at The Kennedy Center, 203-332-4535, ext. 240.
A free exhibit at the People's United gallery, on display through the end of February, features the calendar artwork along with 45 paintings by other Kennedy Center artists.