Art with Heart
Over the past five years, we have been fortunate to present the works of many local artists through The Darien House Tour: Homes with Heart. Below is a list of artists, art consultants and art galleries. Please check them out and tell them the house tour sent you!
Heather Gaudio Fine Art
Located at 66 Elm Street in New Canaan, Heather Gaudio Fine Art specializes in both emerging and established artists, offering works on paper, photography, painting and sculpture. The gallery provides a full range of art advisory services, from forming and maintaining a collection, to securing secondary market material and assisting with framing and installation. The focus is on each individual client, selecting art that best serves his or her vision, space, and resources. Offering six shows a year, the exhibitions are designed to showcase important talent and provide artwork appealing to a broad range of interests.
Located at 85 Main Street in New Canaan, Sorelle Gallery Fine Art specializes in a wide variety of contemporary, modern and traditional art from over 40 established artists. With access to Sorelle’s consultation and advisory service, art-seekers looking for a personal, professional touch have their wish lists fulfilled; from first meeting, to art installation.
Deciding on a name, I asked my Italian mother and her first thought was “Strega! Because we have good magic.” When I explained this name might scare people away (’strega’ is Italian for ’witch’), she rolled her eyes and threw up her hands. “How about girlfriends or sisters?” I asked. And she said, smiling, “Ah, for sister Sorella and for more than one Sorelle.” Thus, Sorelle Gallery Fine Art was born. A woman owned and operated business; a working group of ‘sisters’." — Sandra Pelletier, Principal
Featured Art Advisors
Kristin Peterson Edwards, kpeArts
Kristin Peterson Edwards, is a twenty-five year veteran of the art world and an avid life-long traveler. She is a private art consultant whose concentration is in primary market contemporary painting, sculpture and photography. She has also coordinated visits to galleries, studios, private collections and museums in the New York area for individuals and groups. For a few years, Kristin organized art tours in NYC for the Greenwich Arts Council in Greenwich, CT, and several years ago she began taking small groups of collectors to Art Basel Miami. Out of this experience she developed an art centered travel business focused on providing unique and exclusive art and culinary excursions. She has curated group trips to cities including Berlin, Chicago, L.A., Miami, San Francisco. Kristin also arranged a trip to Buenos Aires in partnership with Studio Traveler. Together they led back to back visits to Berlin as well as to Munich and Copenhagen, Denmark.
Kristin received a BA in Art History and French Studies at Northwestern University and received a graduate diploma in Contemporary Art at Christie’s Education in London.
Lynne Byrne is a local photographer whose focus is on nature.
The stunning beauty of our environment is everywhere to see, if we are willing to stop and consider it. I am fascinated by every magnificent detail: sunlight shot through a maple leaf, beads of water on a cob web, the impossible vibrancy of colors spun into nature. These intricate images are before us, sometimes unseen -- a world within a world. The lens focuses, the shutter opens and closes, and captures an impression in one exquisite moment. This is what inspires and propels my photography.
I've heard it said, "It's not just what we see; it's that we see." Thanks for taking a look.
Andrea Bonfils is an award winning American contemporary painter, photographer and mixed media artist. She is represented by galleries in New Mexico, Connecticut and South Carolina, and is in corporate and private collections worldwide. Bonfils resides in Darien, Connecticut and maintains a studio in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
"Using unconventional hardware - a blow torch, iron and other heated tools, along with paper, photography, resin and natural materials - Andrea employs mixed media with deft skill and innovation. Her uncommon painting techniques yield to a vision that is intense, mysterious and ethereal. Her artwork embodies that vision particularly in her underwater series, and those that depict subjects of wild horses and aspens.”
Specifically the newly released “Submerged Garden” series is a stunning photographic meditation on an idealized oceanic paradise. Bonfils employs pioneering underwater techniques to create large-scale photographs of dream-like rapture. Through her lens the reflected images of submerged floral sculptures morph into sacred geometric abstractions. According to the artist: “The sensation when viewing this work is serene yet intriguing, as if one is diving, drifting and adventuring within a pristine ocean oasis.”
For over twenty years Ben has captured family moments big and small. Sometimes these moments are landmark celebrations. Sometimes they are little snippets of a perfect day spent together. Sometimes they mark a milestone, and sometimes the fleeting glance a mother gives her child. Ben captures these beautiful moments in time, creating memories for the family to enjoy for generations.
Ben's work is in many private collections, as well as permanent collections of:
The George Eastman House, Rochester
The High Museum, Atlanta
The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
The Museum of Modern Art, New York
Mary Manning’s paintings and monotypes are recognized for their exuberant color and strong graphic quality. Her work reflects a lifelong curiosity, commitment to experimentation and exposure to a wide range of creative endeavors.
As a youth, she spent summers at her parents’ summer stock theatre painting sets and playing in the costume department. In college, her scholastic pursuits encompassed the disciplines of graphic design, painting, English literature, interior design and fashion design, with additional studies in printmaking, jewelry-making, textile-weaving, and doll- and puppet-making. She pursued successful careers as a graphic designer and art director before focusing exclusively on fine art. Now, Manning soaks up inspiration from literature, music, nature and current events, and continues to participate in professional critique sessions with her artist peers.
A painter based in Lakeville, CT, LeSage studied at Massachusetts College of Art in Boston. After living in Manhattan for over a decade, she began spending weekends in rural CT. Inspired by the pristine panoramas there, she became a full-time resident of Litchfeld County and began painting full-time. She describes her large, atmospheric canvases as ‘a dance between realism and abstraction,’ and herself as ‘a minimalist disguised as a landscape painter.’
LeSage began exhibiting her work in 2003. Sold-out shows in local venues led to representation by commercial galleries, larger work, and regional recognition. In recent years her work has been featured in national magazines, expanding her following throughout the U.S. and Canada.
Abby Flanagan’s first job started in Sun Valley, Idaho working as a photo shoot coordinator for a commercial sports photographer. From there she took a job in NYC producing television commercials. Photography has always been a love and when she began to photograph her own family, her passion was reignited for the craft.
It was a random discovery that led to the biggest boost in her new found venture. “I began to play around with landscape photographs on the computer. I loved how I could take an ordinary photograph and make it look like a painting.” Abby felt she was blending art with photography. “My first artistic piece was taken from a Carribean golf course. I blew it up to 40″ by 50” and mounted it on Plexiglas.”
“I wanted to do more of this so I began taking photos that lent itself to this type of photographic art.” Mounting photos on clear plastic gives her work a modern feel. “My work is blurred rather than macro detail and I feel that the large scale pieces makes my pieces more impactful.” Others did too and wanted Abby’s art for their homes. Abby says, “Using the editing process, I won’t recreate two of the same pieces; so each photograph that I sell is one of a kind.”
When you look at Abby’s work, you get a serene and peaceful feeling . Abby says that is her goal, “I work to create a mood through the art.” With one look you know what she means.
With a background in Fashion, working for Ralph Lauren and traveling the world, Suzie Jellinek draws from her experiences to create layered abstract paintings that elicit an immediate emotional connection. Suzie attended the Fashion Institute of Technology and prior to this earned a degree in Cultural Anthropology from the University of Western Ontario. Suzie has worked on honing her craft by taking art classes throughout her years in fashion. She started with landscapes and while she is still inspired by them, she came to prefer abstract work because it allows for more freedom of expression. She likes to play and experiment with different color, texture and mediums. Each painting offers a unique tapestry. Her work has been featured on the cover of Greenwich Magazine and resides in private collections. Suzie lives in Darien, CT with her family.
Christina Klumb, with ROOTS of 4 generations in art, architecture and design, has earned her WINGS as a noted designer and artist.
Following her graduation in interior architecture from Syracuse University, she focused on corporate, commercial and retail interiors for a leading architectural firm FxFOWLE Architects in New York City. She broadened her expertise by studying graphic design and visual communication at the School of Visual Arts, New York City. Subsequently, joined Carbone Smolan Associates and E. Christopher Klumb Associates where she designed graphics and environmental graphics for major, multi-use complexes in the United States and Asia.
Outside of the professional world, her multi-medium designs include 2 and 3 dimensional works of art: sculpture, ceramics, mixed media, printmaking. weaving, jewelry, as well as abstract and oriental brush painting. Her work has been represented in galleries in New York City, Connecticut, South Carolina and California. Many of these exhibits have been juried, in which she received awards and her works are in private collections.
Her mixed media sculpture and ceramics has evolved and taken on a delicate organic design form. Being inspired by or incorporating natural or reclaimed materials. She received a fellowship to Anderson Ranch Art Center near Aspen, CO and continues to be involved at Silvermine School of Art in various mediums. As a Graphic Designer and Artist, the strength of the resulting image in Monoprints and Mixed Media has been an inspiring medium and compliments her multi disciplinary approach.
Charlotte Golla Sabbagh
Danish artist Charlotte Sabbagh currently lives in Rowayton, CT. She studied in New York at Persons Fine Arts program, NYC Studio School and Silvermine CT.
Charlotte gets her inspiration from her native country Denmark where she spends each summer. She is drawn to the contrast of light and dark in the water, sky horizons, atmosphere and the natural beauty of the world we live in. These images are expressed in the colors, textures and mixed media used in each painting. Throughout her extensive travels she is enlightened by different cultures, perceptions and the love of life.
Her catalog of work consists of abstract painting using oils, acrylics and mixed media.
In recent years, her work has been shown in individual and group exhibitions including HB Home Greenwich CT, 711 Gallery NYC, CCBS art show and Art to the avenue CT. Fig Linen Westport, Olley Court Ridgefield, The Art Bazaar NYC, designers and private clients in Europe and the U.S.
In commission work, Charlotte integrates the painting with a site specific approach. She looks at the space, materials, colors and the personal interaction between the artist and the client, the message and meaning, the materials and substance to all come together in one unique painting.
"Art is public by nature, yet a complex echo of the inner self" - Charlotte Sabbagh
Currently residing in South Norwalk CT., long time Darien resident and fine art photographer Michael Schley has been making photographs for over 25 years. He studied his art at the New England School of Photography in Boston and at the International Center of Photography in New York.
Michael’s black and white photography is inspired by blending themes of architecture and nature. Often bordering on abstraction, he takes a modernist approach to his photography and seeks a poetic expression through studies of light, space and pure form.
Michael has traveled with his camera capturing images throughout the United States and also into Europe, most notably to Prague, where he stayed for 6 months to photograph the beauty if this historic city. In 2004, he published a book if this work titled: The Heart of Prague. In addition, Michael’s work has also been published in Art + Auction magazine, B&W Magazine and has been the recipient of numerus awards and exhibitions.
Unique and contrary to popular digital trends, Michael still prefers to use classic silver based materials, without the use of a computers and software to create a photograph. He continues to shoot all of his personal work on film as well as to hand process and print all of his negatives in the darkroom.
Jan Raymond is a Connecticut artist who’s primary interest is in how color can be used to delineate objects. She has exhibited in various juried shows including; Art of the Northeast, Washington & Jefferson University’s American Artists Show, New Haven Paint and Clay and The Faber Birren Color show where she won the color award.
She has exhibited in group shows at the Stamford Museum, The State University of New York, Purchase, and The Connecticut Gallery. She has had solo shows at the Pindar Gallery (NYC), Portfolio Gallery (Stamford, CT) and Merkin Hall (NYC). She is an exhibiting member of The Rowayton Art Center.
Her work is in numerous corporate and private collections. Jan studied and Syracuse University, Parsons Institute and was a student of the late Abstract Expressionist Theodore Stamos.