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Stairwell Gallery |  Artist Missy Stevens Documentary |  Conversational Spanish Class |  Life Coach Sarah Hamilton |  Book Basement |  e-Readers at the Gunn |  Museum Passes |  Search the Museum's Catalog |  Connecticut Room |  Junior Library Programs


View Our Event Calendar!

Botanical Watercolors by Betsy Rogers-Knox

A special show of botanical watercolors by international award-winning artist Betsy Rogers-Knox, titled "The Beauty of Botany," includes her exhibit shown last February in London titled "Milkweed Through the Seasons" at the Royal Horticultural Botanical Art Show where it won the Silver Gift Award. The exhibit will be on display until July 9 and may be viewed during normal library hours.

Art meets ecology in a series of paintings that dramatizes the intertwining lives of the milkweed and the monarch butterfly whose larvae consume only milkweed leaves. As milkweeds are eliminated by herbicides, land development and climate change, monarch population in the eastern US has diminished by 90% over the past 20 years. "I hope that calling attention to the plight of the milkweed plant — and the colorful butterflies dependent on it — will help promote the long-term survival for both," says Betsy.

Besides her recent exhibition in London, her work has appeared throughout the U.S. She attended the School of Visual Arts in New York as well as Garland College in Boston and holds a certificate in botanical illustration from the New York Botanical Garden. She has taught botanical illustration at conferences and workshops throughout the country and teaches drawing and watercolor in Bethlehem, CT where she lives.

For more information, visit the artist's website at www.rogersknoxart.com or call 860-868-7586 or email the library circulation desk, gunncirc@biblio.org.

Next Up in the Stairwell: Harvey Yaverbaum's Photographs: "Olio, A First Public Showing"

The exhibition, of many of Harvey Yaverbaum's color photographs taken in natural light, will be on display for six weeks starting on July 16 and ending August 27. It represents the broad range of approaches with which he has experimented over the past two decades, running the gamut from landscapes to abstracts. The show kicks off with an opening reception on July 16 from 3:00 - 5:00 p.m.

Harvey, a retired Manhattan real estate attorney and professor who now resides in Roxbury, was born in Brooklyn where he grew up not far from Bernie Sanders, Chuck Schumer and Woody Allen, facts that he contends are not relevant to his work.

Harvey says "I've been fascinated with photography ever since my grandmother gave me a 'Brownie' with which I sought to immortalize a polar bear in the Prospect Park Zoo."

His interest was heightened when he experimented with a Polaroid Land Camera that he received as a bar mitzvah gift and, when less expensive color slides became available, his three children served as unknowing (or, more often, uncontrollable) subjects; it was cemented when he gained the freedom to travel, seriously overloaded with equipment. Harvey reluctantly converted from film photography about seven years ago and is now pleased that he shoots exclusively using a medium format digital camera.

When compelled to describe his aesthetic, he says that it is broad ranging, but for the most part focuses on the importance of color and on composition that seeks to display the commonplace and isolated details, as he finds them, in a new light.

This exhibit may be viewed during library hours. For further information please call Sharon Morrissey at 860-868-7586 or email gunnstaff@biblio.org.

Fiber Artist Missy Stevens Documentary Screening

Nationally acclaimed fiber artist, Missy Stevens, a long time Washington, CT resident, showcases her artistic ingenuity in the recently produced documentary, Missy Stevens, The Spirit and Technique of Painting and Thread. The premiere screening will take place on Thursday, June 23 at 6:30 p.m. in the Wykeham Room.

Missy's thread paintings, some of which will be on display for the event, are one-of-a-kind embroideries known for their rich color and playful spirit. In the film she explains her discovery of the punch-needle and its use in fine art. Going beyond technique, it is revealed how her spiritual journey creates inspired imagery, connection to nature and a sense of purpose. Running time 22 minutes.

Following the screening there will be a question and answer session with Missy and writer and producer of the documentary, Rusty Dyer of DigiDyer Productions. Refreshments will be served.

Ms. Stevens' thread paintings have been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions in galleries and museums throughout the United States, including the Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art in Ridgefield, Connecticut; the St. Louis Art Museum in St. Louis, Missouri; and the Society for Contemporary Crafts in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In addition, her work is in public collections, including those of the Museum of Arts and Designs, New York, New York and the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian Museum in Washington DC. She is the recipient of numerous awards and honors. She received an individual artist grant from the Connecticut Commission on the Arts and the Craftsmen Choice Award at the Smithsonian Craft Show in 2001. For more information on the artist visit www.missystevens.com. For more information on Rusty Dyer's film production business, visit www.digidyer.com. For more informaiton on this program, contact Margaret Ferguson at gunnprograms@biblio.org or 860-868-7586.

Ruth Jaffe's Conversational Spanish Class

By popular demand Ruth Jaffe returns to lead a conversational Spanish group for all. The 4-part series will take place on Mondays at 2:00 p.m. on May 9, May 23, June 13 and June 27. Participants are welcome to join all or some of the sessions.

This is the ideal opportunity for those who wish to learn basic conversational Spanish, as well as for those who wish to strengthen their verbal skills in the language. All ages, stages and levels of proficiency in Spanish are welcome. The gatherings will take place in the casual, relaxed setting of the Reading Room of the library, inviting spontaneity of interaction. Structured guidance and individual, as well as group, feedback will be focal elements of each meeting. Be prepared to conquer your linguistic reticence and take a leap into ESPAÑOL!

Ruth Jaffe is a psychoanalyst/psychotherapist in private practice in Washington, CT, and since last year retired from her practice & teaching in NYC. Her academic background, particularly in her native Argentina, includes the teaching of languages from elementary through college levels. As a teenager, she attended the renowned Instituto Nacional del Profesorado en Lenguas Vivas, from which she graduated with a teaching degree prior to her acceptance at the School of Medicine of Buenos Aires University. She later came to the U.S. on a scholarship to study Psychology — and the rest 'es historia.'

Ruth is an avid reader and can often be seen in the library. She is also an accomplished artist.


Life Coach Sarah Hamilton — Life is Now

On Thursday, July 7 at 6:30 p.m. certified life coach Sarah Hamilton of Washington, CT offers a presentation, "Life is Now," in the Wykeham.

Sarah specializes in heart-centered communication by helping others transform their lives by transforming their thoughts. She focuses on helping people, many of whom have been diagnosed with life altering illnesses, by focusing them on living in the moment. Throughout this process, many make sustainable changes in their lives as well as their health and recovery.

In this program participants will learn some key steps to starting on a path to staying present. They will receive the tools to stop cyclical thinking, and bringing one into the present moment. She will ask key questions about experiencing the "now" and what judgement could be being placed on it. How one thinks and the choices made can either support health or tear it down. The only thing in life we can truly control is the way we think and our subsequent actions. As the adage states, "Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery and today is a gift, that's why we call it the present!

As a certified life coach, Sarah has spent the past 22 years preparing for this moment. She brings her background as a professional actress and voice over artist of 15 years, along with her experience as a director, fundraiser and public speaker to her coaching. She has devoted years to intensive spiritual practice and is an eternal student of humanity. Sarah is a regular speaker at Mt. Sanai Hospital in NYC and at Carlson Therapy Network in CT.

For more information visit www.sarah-hamilton.com For more informaiton on this program, contact Margaret Ferguson at gunnprograms@biblio.org or 860-868-7586.

Book Basement

Open weekdays 10:00 to 4:00, Saturdays 10:00 to 2:00
Consider Bringing Your Own Bag. Thanks!

Come in and browse the newly added fiction, non-fiction, biography, history and children’s books. The history has been organized into major wars as well as American and European categories and more. There is an entire wall of new fiction. The new stock includes "specials" — frequently collectible and highly sought after titles priced far less than what can be found on internet book sites. A large collection of books about antiques will be featured, among which the series, American Furniture by Luke Beckerdite, is covering 1993 to 2010. A selection of Irish literature includes many signed books of poetry. There is a section of local authors and many are autographed.There are thousands of books on varied topics and for every age. Since the Book Basement is constantly restocking, if you don't find something one day, come in another to find additional titles that have been added. It is a bibliophile’s cornucopia!

Call the library for further information at 860-868-7586.

e-Readers at the Gunn

Six Nook e-book reading devices have been added to our junior library collection, featuring titles for children and independent readers. Three are black and white models, with illuminated screens yet no glare in sunlight, and three are full-color tablets, perfect for younger picture book readers as well as movie-watchers with a Netflix account.

Four Amazon Kindle e-book reading devices continue to circulate from our adult circulation desk. Residents 18 years or older with a current library card may borrow an e-reader, and a Borrower's Term of Agreement must be signed. The e-reader program is made possible by a generous donation from the Shea family.

Museum Passes

Looking for a fun day trip? Museum passes are free to check out for for a three-day loan to Gunn patrons.

New Britain Museum of American Art — Free admssion for four people. (One adult must accompany children under 16). Pass is valid for general admission only. Additional fees may apply to special exhibitions, events and programs. Library pass cannot be used for Docent-led tours.

Wadsworth Atheneum — the ARTpass offers free general admission for up to two adults and two children (ages 6-17).

The Junior Library has more passes.

Explore the Connecticut Room

Looking for your ancestors? Want to learn more about your house? Is there something here in Washington that you've always wondered about? To explore the resources available in both the Connecticut Room and the Museum, please call 868-7756 for an appointment.

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