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KENAN GALLERY TO PRESENT 3 GENERATIONS OF BURCHFIELDS | Arts & Culture

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KENAN GALLERY TO PRESENT 3 GENERATIONS OF BURCHFIELDS
Arts & Culture
KENAN GALLERY TO PRESENT 3 GENERATIONS OF BURCHFIELDS

This year not only marks the 50th Anniversary of the Kenan Center in Lockport, but the 51st anniversary of a landmark in the history of the Kenan House Gallery. It was on April 30, 1966, that the fledgling gallery opened with an exhibit of works by American watercolorist, Charles E. Burchfield, from the collection of Charles Rand Penney. It would prove to be one of the last exhibitions Burchfield attended in person prior to his passing in January, 1967.

This year the Burchfields return with the exhibit, THREE GENERATIONS OF BURCHFIELDS: WORKS FROM THE SCHOENE COLLECTION, opening April 30, 2017 with a public reception from 2:00-5:00 p.m. The exhibit will bring together for the first time the works of Charles Burchfield, both of his daughters Catherine Burchfield Parker and Martha Burchfield Richter, and his grand-daughter, Peggy Richter Haug. The exhibit is guest curated by Gerald Mead. In addition to paintings by all four Burchfield artists, Schoene’s collection also includes an extensive number of Charles Burchfield’s field sketches which he used as references for his paintings including one for “Icebound Lake Boat,” a painting in the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

The exhibit continues through June 16 in the Kenan House Gallery, 433 Locust St, Lockport. Gallery hours are M-F, noon-5:00 p.m.; Sundays, 2:00-5:00 p.m. The Gallery will also be open Saturdays, May 6 and June 10 from 2:00-5:00 p.m., and during 100 American Craftsmen, 11:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. June3, and noon-5:00p.m. June 4. The Gallery will be closed May 7 and 21, and 27-29 for Memorial Day weekend.

Collector Louise Simon Schoene comes from a background of business and civic activity as what she calls a “citizen diplomat.” She previously held the role of director and New York State Coordinator of Sister Cities International and currently serves as Vice President of American Women for International Understanding. She has devoted more than two decades to acquiring the Burchfield works in her collection, with a particular desire to bring Martha Burchfield Richter to greater national attention. Says Schoene: “This exhibition is personally meaningful to me because it is the culmination of almost twenty years of focused commitment--from my first Burchfield purchase and working to turn the idea of the Charles E. Burchfield Nature and Art Center in West Seneca into a reality, to my current service as a member of the Advisory Council of the Burchfield Penney Art Center.” An interesting side note is that Schoene loaned seven of Martha Burchfield Richter’s paintings to the producers of Marshall, the bio-pic about Thurgood Marshall which filmed here in Buffalo in the summer of 2016.

Guest curator, Gerald Mead, adds:  “Renowned watercolorist Charles Burchfield and his artistic descendants quite possibly could be referred to as Western New York’s ‘first family’ of artists. It is highly appropriate therefore that this collection of their works, passionately acquired by collector Louise Schoene over many years, be presented at the Kenan Center in its year of celebration. This exhibition, which consists of works spanning nearly a century, provides a rare opportunity to see the work of Charles Burchfield in concert with his daughters Martha and Catherine and grand-daughter Peggy. It is also noteworthy that this exhibition includes the largest number of works by Martha Burchfield Richter on public view in decades.”

In addition to the exhibit, a special Tea & Tour will take place on May 21 from 1:00-3:00 p.m. giving visitors a chance to learn more about the works and the artists. The event will include light luncheon fare, tea, and dessert followed by a conversation with Schoene and Mead. The cost is $25 per person and advance reservations are required by calling 433-2617.

2017 Gallery exhibition sponsors are the Grigg Lewis Foundation, Kenan Arts Council, Kenan Quilters’ Guild, M&T Bank, and the William R. Kenan, Jr., Charitable Trust.

For information, go to www.kenancenter.org.

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