HeART & Mind exhibit opening at Silvermine

HeART & Mind, a major exhibition opening at Silvermine on Oct. 31, will explore the healing power of art. On Sunday, Nov. 3, at 2pm, Silvermine will host an opening reception and keynote lecture by Cheryl Bundy, Chaplain and Spiritual Counselor at Silver Hill Hospital. Interactive, uplifting programs accompanying the exhibition will engage the community in conversations, performances, and presentations led by experts in visual thinking as well as art, music, and dance therapy. HeART & Mind runs through Jan. 12, 2020. The exhibition and programs are generously supported by the New Canaan Community Foundation.

HeART & Mind will open a window to creativity and well-being by bringing together works by an exceptional array of artists who are exploring mental health issues and at the same time celebrating the resilience of the human spirit. At the core, many of these works of art reveal a yearning to understand and accept ourselves and to connect in an authentic way to those around us. Sculptor Susan Clinard and mixed-media artist Barbara Ringer explore trauma, memory, and recovery. Jay Petrow’s paintings reflect his struggle to “express my emotions and experiences as a father of a child with autism.” Artists Inez Andrucyk, Nash Hyon, Ann Weiner, and Joan Wheeler cope with the death of loved ones through art that dances between presence and absence, grief and joy, loss and rejuvenation. Inez sees making art as “a process toward renewal.” Veterans of the wars in Iran and Afghanistan who have struggled with PTSD—including Marshall Weber, whose poster declares: “There’s No Such Thing as a Toy Soldier”—are among the exhibiting artists. As South African artist Tsoku Maela, whose photographs examine the stigma of mental illness in the black community, writes, “We are all going through something, but you do not have to go through it alone. This body of work is a result of going to places I hate the most about myself and finding beauty there.” Visitors to the Silvermine Galleries will have the opportunity to see transcendent works that encompass the full spectrum of life experience.

Programs for the community offered throughout the run of the exhibition

In addition to the Nov. 3 keynote lecture by Cheryl Bundy, the public is invited to an interactive series of programs related to HeART & Mind.

On November 10 at 1 pm, Karen Nisenson, Founder and Clinical Director of Arts for Healing, and Jennifer Ellyson, Dance Therapist at Arts for Healing, will engage audience volunteers in fun, improvisational piano playing and dance movement to expand self-awareness and connection with others. Karen and Jennifer will demonstrate that self-expression is inherent in everyone and the core self emerges through creativity. No experience with music or dance is required to find your inner voice through the arts. After the interactive program, from 3:30–4:30 pm, Karen and Jennifer as well as Ellen Brezovsky, Executive Director, New Canaan CARES, and Kathleen (Katie) Wieting, Art Therapist at Silver Hill Hospital, will participate in a panel discussion “The Art of Healing through the Arts.” This program is free and open to all.

In a free “Conversations with Artists” program on Sun., Nov. 17, 3–4pm, the public is invited to engage with works of art in the galleries through talks led by exhibiting artists.

Silvermine will host “Visual Thinking in the Galleries” on Sun., Dec. 8, 2–4 pm (with a break at 3 pm). Advance registration is required for this free program, which is limited to 30 people. Jessica Sack, Senior Associate Curator of Public Education, Yale University Art Gallery, will lead the group in an interactive and enjoyable program on visual thinking. Jessica will encourage participants to explore feelings, perceptions, and imagination in response to works in HeART & Mind. 

Simone DePaolo will present an evening of songs from the heart, with hope, healing, and humor on Sat., Dec. 14. The event will begin with a reception from 7–8 pm in the Galleries, and her performance of “Simone: Feeling Good” will begin at 8 pm. Simone, who is Assistant Director for Dance at the D’Valda and Sirico Music and Dance Center in Fairfield, CT, is a vocalist, dancer, choreographer and teacher, and has presented performance workshops throughout the region. Tickets are $25 and can be purchased online at https://silvermineart.org/event/performance-simone-feeling-good/ or by phone (203) 966-9700 ext. 29.

HeART & Mind’s closing reception and Artist Talk will take place on Sat., Jan. 12, 2020, from 3–5 pm in the Silvermine Galleries. The reception and discussion are free and open to the public. For program registration and more information on the programs or the HeART & Mind exhibition, visit https://silvermineart.org/exhibition/heart-mind/.

Special one-day workshops at the Silvermine School of Art

In conjunction with HeART & Mind, the Silvermine School of Art will offer the following special one-day workshops. Silvermine will provide the materials. To register, call the School at (203) 966-6668.

Sun., Nov. 17, 10am–3pm / Ages 17+/ $140 (Limited to 15), Drawing & Painting: A Focus on Mind, Body & Synchronicity with Inez Andrucyk. Create an environment for nonjudgmental inspiration. Quiet your speeding thoughts through art making. Paint and draw with an awareness of the interaction between mind, body, spirit and art material.

Fri., Jan. 10, 10am–4pm / Ages 17+ / $165 (Limited to 15) The Healing Power of Mandalas with Inez Andrucyk. The process of creating round, symmetrical Mandalas, symbols of community, promotes mindfulness and healing. You will use your own imagery within the Mandala form. From sketches and/or writings, we will progress onto larger paper using colored pencils, markers and watercolor.

Sun., Jan. 12, 1–4pm / For all ages / $125 for 2, $65 each additional. Drawing BIG: Family Workshop with Jennifer Reid (limited to 7 pairs). Moving your body around can help release emotions as you are drawing. Students will create large-scale expressive works of art on paper that explore color, form, texture, space, and movement using fun, unconventional tools.


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